Ranks 11-50 of the Diversity MBA Magazine 50 Out Front


50 Out Front Profiles

by Sheryl Nance Nash, Mark Reynolds

11. WellPoint, Inc.

Indianapolis, IN

42,000 employees


There’s a saying at WellPoint: “One Company, One Team.” And in alignment with that core value, the Diversity and Workplace Culture Ambassadors (DWCA) program weaves diversity, company values, and corporate culture into the fabric of the organization. The DWCA focuses on raising awareness and engagement among all WellPoint associates. Ambassadors plan and implement local events and activities and volunteer their time to act as champions for creating dialogue, interaction, and engagement around the company’s diversity and workplace culture efforts.

Another piece of WellPoint’s diversity puzzle is its Community Resource Centers. The storefront offices are strategically located for ease of access by their members, and staffed with health care and social service professionals. They comprise a multidisciplinary, multicultural, and multilingual team that helps members navigate the bureaucracy of public programs, break down language and literacy barriers, and even provide transportation to doctor appointments if needed.

To overcome an absence of self-reported race and ethnicity membership information, WellPoint developed a dedicated health disparities analytic unit. With initial assistance from Rand Corp., WellPoint developed a means to estimate member race, ethnicity, or language needs based on affiliated health plans’ membership demographics. This information allowed the firm to examine differences between racial/ethnic groups in various health indicators, such as diabetes and mammography screening rates. Overlaying the performance data with geographic software produced maps showing health disparity “hot spots,” and opportunities to implement programs to improve service and access.

WellPoint is the nation’s leading health benefits insurer and a Fortune Top 50 company.

12. DePaul University

Chicago, IL

1,842 Professors


How important is diversity at DePaul? In its Vision twenty12 goals, becoming a model of diversity is among its top six objectives.

The Office of Institutional Diversity & Equity (OIDE) at DePaul provides both on-demand and scheduled professional development training. The heart of the training philosophy is to provide interactive, productive, practical, developmental sessions that effectively introduce diversity competencies and skills that ultimately establish best practices in the workplace and classroom.

The President’s Diversity Council (PDC) promotes collaboration and communication by bringing together leaders from identified constituency groups to initiate cooperative programs and facilitate opportunities for multicultural dialogue. The vision statement is clear: The PDC will be evolving in composition, and reflect the changing dynamics of the school’s demographics in regard to students, faculty, and staff populations, and will assist with the strategic planning and incorporation of diversity initiatives throughout the university.

DePaul’s Cultural Center is the hub for culturally oriented programs and services for students, faculty, staff, and the general public. It also offers financial support for cultural and ethnic student organizations representing African-American, American Indian, Asian, Ethnic Greek, GLBT, Jewish, Latino/a and Muslim populations, offering opportunities for all students to interact with and learn about people from different racial, ethnic, and/or cultural backgrounds outside of the classroom.

13. FedEx

Memphis, TN

140,000 employees


FedEx doesn’t deliver on its diversity promise only to employees, but also to the community. More than 40% of the company’s U.S. workforce and 27% of its management team are minorities.

Dress for Success is a nonprofit organization that helps low-income women become self-sufficient and self-confident by providing work-appropriate clothes, self-esteem building, and career development.  FedEx is a presenting sponsor of the Dress for Success Worldwide annual fundraiser in New York. The company has also expanded its involvement to include the FedEx special delivery trucks in efforts to collect and deliver clothing to Dress for Success locations in key cities. Additionally, the FedEx Women’s Network has been instrumental in providing workshops, mentoring, and coaching to the Professional Women’s group, a major initiative of the Dress for Success Program.

FedEx contributes to the United Negro College Fund and sponsors the Asian and Pacific Islander American Scholarship Fund. The Hispanic Scholarship Fund (HSF) is dedicated to advancing higher education and increasing the earning power for Hispanic- Americans. The HSF-FedEx Scholarship program supports a new group of scholars annually with a four-year renewable scholarship. FedEx also sponsors annual HSF town- hall meetings to inform students and their families about education resources and opportunities. The organization’s mission is to double the rate of Hispanics earning college degrees by 2010.

14. Northern Trust Corp.

Chicago, IL

10,918 employees


At Northern Trust, the corporate diversity officer is charged with ensuring the progressiveness in their programs, training, and policies, with support from diversity councils.

The Chairman’s Diversity Advocate Award Program recognizes employees who champion and make contributions to the company’s diversity efforts. Widespread Diversity at Work training continuously improves the abilities of work groups to value their people and all of their contributions. In order to keep the best people, the company has work-life programs such as flexible scheduling, on-site childcare at headquarters, and rigorous career-development programs.

The Northern Trust Company Charitable Trust was established in 1966 to support nonprofit organizations in Cook County, IL. It focuses on reaching out to people in the Chicago area who are in need or who face obstacles that impede their full participation in society. It supports programs designed to make an ongoing difference in people’s lives with a particular emphasis on advancing the well being of disadvantaged women and children and people with disabilities.

Women and minority-owned businesses are supported through the financial institution’s lending activities and supplier network. Northern Trust’s partnership efforts include philanthropic, educational, technical assistance, and direct volunteer activities.

15. Colgate Palmolive Co.

New York, NY

36.000 employees


Career development is key at Colgate. Within its Individual Development Planning (IDP) program, employees partner with their managers to identify skills, behaviors, and knowledge needed to achieve specific goals. The company’s global succession planning identifies and develops the next two to three generations of leaders. Skill development includes formal classroom study, sharing best practices globally, and developing practical work applications based on real-world experiences. There are annual goal-setting sessions as well as continuous coaching and feedback to discuss progress, identify areas for improvement and redefine priorities. Written appraisals document progress toward career goals.

Colgate thinks globally. With over 30,000 employees around the world, the company is a melting pot, and so is its marketing. “Multicultural Marketing is the introduction of products and services to a diverse group of consumers consistent with their cultural and lifestyle preferences in a manner that acknowledges the cultural nuances in a respectful way,” says Dan Cummings, general manager of multicultural marketing.

At Colgate, each global market represents its own unique purchasing preferences and product needs. With Hispanic-American, African-American and Asian markets the fastest growing in the country in terms of numbers and purchasing power, the U.S. Multicultural Marketing Organization within Colgate is focused on driving growth in those important consumer markets. Its objective is to know its global consumers and develop products that meet their needs.

16. Convergys

Cincinnati, OH

74,000+ employees


The company’s diversity principles include valuing individual differences; attracting, developing and supporting a diverse workforce, fostering mutual respect and open communication, and enhancing career opportunities.

Convergys has a diversity curriculum. With the company’s expanding global presence, the demand for customer and employee interactions across cultures continues to grow. This is being addressed through a multi-dimensional, multicultural skills-based learning experience called Operating in a Global Environment (OGE). OGE is designed to help employees accomplish their goals of working in a changing, multicultural workplace.

A group of 80 employees who are recognized as leaders in their businesses to drive proactive change at all levels of the company make up the Global Diversity Council (GDC). Members work to define diversity as it relates to the company’s workforce and business case, while striving to build a cohesive and inclusive workplace where all employees feel valued. The GDC committees provide direction and implementation for diversity measurements & accountability, diversity education & training, diversity communications, diversity recruitment & retention, and diversity career/professional development.

Diversity goes deeper still with diversity action teams, designed to focus on enriching the employment experience of all employees, as well as making meaningful contributions that benefit the company overall. The teams identify and recommend solutions specific to their location, market, and community.

17. American Airlines

Ft. Worth, TX

84,100 employees


American Airlines recently created external customer advisory councils, focused specifically on key segments, which have given the company invaluable insight into what it can do and stop doing to build customer loyalty. The feedback has driven enhanced customer service training, specialized content on AA.com/women and AA.com/rainbow, and product enhancements, many of which benefit all customers.

For 15 years, employees have had the opportunity to take part in company-sponsored employee resource groups (ERGs), which are established by employees to highlight identity and advocacy and to provide opportunities for professional development, community involvement, and business contribution. There are 16 ERGs that include: 40+ (generational), African-American, Asian/Pacific Islander, Caribbean, Christian, Employees with disabilities, GLBT, Generation NOW, Hispanic/Latin, Indian, Jewish, Muslim, American Indian, Parents at Work, Veteran Military and Women in AAviation.

The groups are having an impact on business. Members of the Indian, Asian/Pacific Islander, and Muslim ERGs provided insight on everything from customer service to menu selections when American began service to India and China. The Diversity Advisory Council is made up of representatives of each ERG. It meets monthly to provide cross-cultural insight on employee and customer policies, communications and initiatives. Diversity and inclusion are promoted, and strategic guidance is given from the board of directors, office of diversity strategies, and executive- and management-level sponsors.

18. Allstate Corp.

Northbrook, IL

38,000 employees


The numbers speak clearly at Allstate. Its workforce mirrors the diverse markets it serves. Of its nearly 36,000 employees, 60% are women and nearly 30% are minorities. More than 40% of officers and managers are women and approximately 20% come from one of five minority groups. And of the nearly 13,000 Allstate agencies, nearly 40% are women and more than 20% are minorities.

Allstate also earns plaudits for its on-site undergraduate, MBA, and professional courses. Its ConSern Education program offers access to education loans for employees and their families. Allstate Center for Assistive Technology allows the company to identify and meet the needs of individuals with disabilities.

The company’s work-life balance efforts include flexible work arrangements, and dependent care support – an on-site childcare center at headquarters, three near-site childcare centers, and discount programs. There is also on-site dry cleaning, car oil-change, salon, postal, and catering services.

Allstate has a long history of serving multicultural communities. It is the number-two auto insurer in all multicultural markets and provides bilingual (Spanish) customer service.

Women and minority-owned suppliers comprise 2,000 of total Allstate suppliers, or 14% of the entire supplier base. Allstate is an active member in the National Minority Supplier Development Council and Women’s Business Enterprise National Council. Over the past few years, the company has nearly doubled minority and women-owned businesses represented within the total outsourced expenses.

Allstate’s commitment to diversity has been recognized by more than 45 publications and associations that monitor diversity in the workplace.

19. MillerCoors

Chicago, IL

10,000 employees


At MillerCoors, it’s all about partnerships. The company partners with organizations that celebrate and work on issues important to advancing diversity, including those that support diversity education, urban entrepreneurs, university education, and heritage initiatives.

For example, the award-winning Miller Urban Entrepreneur Series responds to the needs of adults 21 and over who want to achieve economic empowerment through entrepreneurship. Since 1999, the company has given hundreds of aspiring entrepreneurs access to expert advice and the tools that they need not only to advance in or win its annual business-plan competition, but also to succeed in obtaining financial resources that will help take their business to the next level.

MillerCoors joined with the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities in 1993 to establish a college education program, the !Adelante! U.S. Education Leadership Fund. It offers a three-tiered model for investing in Latino students through scholarship, internship, and leadership-training programs. The goal is to inspire the best and brightest Latino students to graduate and to lead. All who have participated have either earned a bachelor’s degree or are actively pursuing a master’s.

Each year, MillerCoors supports a variety of health and AIDS causes, community groups, and pride events nationwide. Internally, the company provides sensitivity training and educational, social and support services.

There are initiatives to support female employees, suppliers and women-related causes. In addition, there are programs for minority-based enterprises. And for those who have served or currently serve in the U.S. military, MillerCoors maintains an active program to recruit newly returned veterans for jobs.

20. CSX Corp.

Jacksonville, FL

35,443 employees


At CSX, it’s clear what diversity and inclusion are not. They’re not limited to race and gender, and not about preferences or quotas, changing people’s beliefs, or Affirmative action. Simply put, it means engaging everyone, regardless of age, gender, race, tenure, railroad affiliation, physical challenges, sexual orientation, geographic location, educational level, income, or life experience.

CSX is a transportation company that provides rail-based transportation, intermodal and rail-to-track transload services. Its network connects customers to ports, production and distribution centers and markets across the Eastern United States. Its   employees participate in more than 20 inclusion groups and councils throughout the state network. Groups are required to establish goals that align with CSX business imperatives. Inclusion and council members are actively involved in both community service and recruitment for CSX, and are making a difference. In 2007, new employees in CSX management were 49% diverse. These groups include councils in Jacksonville, Atlanta, Louisville, Florence, Chicago, Huntington, Baltimore, and Tampa, among others.

The annual Inclusion Forum is held in Jacksonville with employees from throughout the CSX network participating in a series of executive and leadership panel discussions, social networking events, workshops, and study circles.

21. MetLife

New York, NY

49,400 employees


At MetLife, diversity is a business imperative. The company highlights some of the marketplace trends that make this so: By 2050, new immigrants will have increased the U.S. population by 80 million. Over 50% of those who enter the workforce are people of color. The U.S. is the fifth largest Spanish-speaking country in the world, with Hispanics having the fastest growing median household income. Women comprise nearly 47% of the U.S. labor force and 50% of its managerial and professional specialty positions. And by 2020, 40% of workers will be caring for aged parents.

Such stats have the diversity people hard at work. MetLife’s Enterprise Diversity Council is made up of senior executives from across the company. It works with the line of business diversity committees and local inclusion action teams to set direction, communicate strategy and ensure consistency of the diversity message across MetLife.

The line of business diversity committees develop and implement strategies and programs designed to foster and support diversity goals and an understanding of the importance of diversity within the lines of business. The diversity action teams develop and promote initiatives that reinforce the inclusive work environment at each MetLife site in order to promote the company’s commitment to diversity and to continue putting MetLife’s enterprise-wide diversity strategies into play.

22. Vanguard

Valley Forge, PA

12,000 (US) employees


“Engagement happens when everyone, no matter who they are, feels deeply valued. Moreover, the broader our diversity, the greater our effectiveness will be, for there is true power in having the widest possible array of perspectives,” says F. William McNabb, III, president/CEO of Vanguard.

Through a partnership between Corporate Diversity and Vanguard University, the company offers a full curriculum of training that moves employees along the diversity continuum from awareness to maturity. The core curriculum consists of more than a dozen sessions that serve as critical components of leadership training, as well as stand alone offerings.

The CEO appoints the Diversity Leadership Team (DLT), which consists of senior leaders from throughout the organization. The DLT sets objectives, ensures their alignment with business strategies and holds leaders accountable for achieving success.

There is a group of full-time diversity professionals who are led by the chief diversity officer. They drive the diversity strategy through education, engagement with leadership teams, relationships with organizations and communities and research to ensure Vanguard stays on the cutting edge of diversity theory and best practices.

23. Citigroup

New York, NY

309,00 employees


At Citigroup, it’s about choice. The company wants to be an employer of choice, a service provider of choice, a business partner of choice, and a neighbor of choice.

What’s the strategy for tackling these goals? Citi’s Diversity Operating Council, made up of senior diversity and human resources leaders from core businesses and regions, provides support and accountability. The council regularly reviews progress against its diversity strategy; shares best practices across businesses; aligns diversity policies globally, and develops, promotes, and executes global diversity initiatives through the business diversity councils, which focus on dimensions of diversity such as disability, ethnicity, gender, race, and sexual orientation.

Senior business managers develop diversity plans and are held accountable for progress against them. In 2007, 109 diversity reviews were conducted and an annual report was presented to the board. Also that year, more than 5,000 employees participated in formalized mentoring programs; 80% of the company’s Management Committee members formally mentored Citi employees, with 89% mentoring a diverse person.

Since 2006, the number of women’s councils and networks more than doubled, from 24 to 54. In 2007, 79% of Management Committee members completed diversity training; in 2006, 82% completed it. In addition to the women’s group, there are 41 other networks, with 14,000 employee participants in 20 cities in the U.S. and United Kingdom. The groups include African Heritage, Asian Pacific Heritage, Disability, Hispanic Heritage, Pride, Working Parents and many others.

24. Cummins Inc.

Columbus, IN

40,000 employees


From day one, Cummins says its employees are involved in the decisions of the company and can take charge of their own projects.

Recognizing the importance of on-boarding, new employees can take part in LAUNCH (Leaders Advancing, Uniting, and Networking Cummins Hires), an affinity group for those with zero to five years of service at Cummins. The mission of LAUNCH is to positively impact the recruitment process and the retention of valued employees.

Cummins consists of business units that design, manufacture, distribute, and service engines and related technologies, including fueling systems, controls, air handling filtration, emission solutions, and electrical power-generation systems. It had sales of $14.34 billion in 2008.

The company has a 10-word vision statement: “Making people’s lives better by unleashing the power of Cummins,” from which all things flow. It says it has worked hard to create a “New Cummins” that is less cyclical, more diversified, and better positioned to be a global leader in all the markets it serves. The company has customers in 190 countries and territories through a network of more than 500 company-owned and independent distributor locations and approximately 5,200 dealer locations.

The new strategy has resulted in strong financial performance, while maintaining to core values such as diversity, global involvement, and corporate responsibility.

25. SunTrust Banks Inc.

Atlanta, GA

33,000 employees (E)


Home is where the heart is. SunTrust provided financing that allowed an Atlanta consortium to purchase the Martin Luther King papers for $32 million and keep the collection in Atlanta.

The kind of care it shows for the community it also applies on its own. At SunTrust, women and minorities are on the board of directors, as well as local community boards. They’re in leadership positions throughout the company, managing key lines of business, and are members of the governing Management Committee. As of March 31, 2007, the workforce was 68% female and 34% minority.

At SunTrust, employees don’t have to wonder how they’re doing. Formal and informal mentoring programs are available throughout the organization. Formal mentoring programs are in place to pair senior managers with junior associates. Managers in different areas have the flexibility to tailor the program to meet their career development needs.

SunTrust’s Focused Leadership Development Program is for minorities. It aims to increase the representation of ethnic minorities in key management and leadership.

Senior management participates in comprehensive diversity training. A web-based diversity-training program is available to all employees. Employees have a formal conversation with their managers about diversity during their annual performance reviews, and managers are asked to show their commitment to diversity.

SunTrust also supports people with disabilities. It has been a national sponsor for Disability Mentoring Day, and sponsored the Career Opportunities for Students with Disabilities (COSD) National Conference. COSD provides education and a forum for students and employers to explore and enhance employment opportunities. The partnership is designed to increase the company’s pipeline of candidates and support people with disabilities.

26. Harley Davidson Inc.

Milwaukee, WI

9,000 Employees


Diversity is a road well traveled at Harley. Through partnerships with local and national organizations, it provides scholarships to minority and female executives seeking to enhance their business management expertise. Scholarship recipients attend intensive educational programs conducted at some of the nation’s most distinguished institutions, including Tuck School of Business (Dartmouth College) and Kellogg Graduate School of Business (Northwestern University). The programs combine business theory along with practical application and offer opportunities to learn from fellow entrepreneurs and top educators.

Since 1993, Harley has provided $25 million in grants and contributions to more than 1,000 non-profits and organizations. Examples of financial support to education include the Black College Tour, Black Achievers Program, minority scholarships to Milwaukee Public Schools, as well as Alverno College’s Project Seed math skills development program, Urban Technology and Trade School. In an effort to nurture quality of life in Milwaukee, it contributes to the Sojourner Truth House, Hunger Task Force, and other groups.

Harley shows its support to veterans by helping to fund the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Traveling Wall and Wall That Heals. It also host special events on Veteran’s Day.

27. Pitney Bowes Inc.

Stamford, CT

35,000 employees

www.pb.com Pitney Bowes has a rich history of diversity. In 1940, then-Chairman Walter H. Wheeler, Jr. resigned from a private club in protest of its anti-Semitic membership policy. He vowed that the company’s employee register would be representative of the ethnic and racial population of Stamford. Two years later, he boycotted a hotel when it refused to register an African-American Pitney Bowes salesman. He immediately left the conference with 20 salespeople in tow. As far back as 1950, Pitney Bowes was recognized by the National Urban League for leadership in providing better job opportunities for Negroes in industry.

In 2000, the company celebrated “Diversity Around the World,” via a global diversity day in 134 offices around the world. That year, purchases with women and minority businesses exceeded $57 million. In 2002, Chairman/CEO Michael Critelli was named chairman of the board of the National Urban League.

Pitney’s employee orientation program includes a formal diversity message, reinforced by diversity learning experiences that emphasize the value of diversity and establish a tone for the environment. There are regular diversity communications via voicemail, newsletters, and e-mail. A classroom and online diversity curriculum are available for employees. The company’s annual Diversity Festival celebrates the company’s multi-cultural and multi-ethnic heritage.

Pitney Bowes has 36,000 employees in 130 countries. Management is specifically tasked with increasing diversity awareness and action, and Pitney’s teams are recognized for their success in introducing new programs that further promote diversity and inclusion.

28. Burger King Corp.

Miami, FL

360,000+ employees


When Burger King opened its doors in 1954, the world was decidedly different. America did not look, work, buy, or live the way it does now. Burger King has had to adapt because change has impacted its workforce, franchise community, suppliers and customers.

Diversity is integrated into every part of its business, including recruiting, retaining, and developing qualified workers from diverse backgrounds. Diversity education is part of the work agenda for employees and leadership.

Burger King supports a variety of organizations and programs geared toward promoting individual success, as well as improving the quality of life in diverse communities. Examples include the National Council of La Raza, Filipino American Library, Asian Pacific American Legal Center, and NAACP.

The Diversity Action Council (DAC) serves as an independent advisory board to Burger King in formulating and evaluating diversity development and goals. DAC is made up of men and women of Burger King and external organizations representing the franchise community of African-Americans, Hispanics, Asian-Americans and others. Its mission statement defines its goals: “To help facilitate business and trade development between Burger King Corporation and ethnic business communities as well as remover barriers that impede good business relationships.”

29. Staples, Inc.

Framingham, MA



With operations in 22 countries around the globe, diversity isn’t really optional at Staples. There’s an associate diversity plan of action and an organizational structure of six regional diversity task forces. The goals of the task forces are to increase awareness of the importance of diversity, reach out and engage with local communities through local organizations and universities and further increase diversity win the company’s sales organization.

Despite a slowdown in hiring due to the economy, the company remains committed to hiring minority and women associates. Staples reports that it continues to see the benefits of a workforce that reflects the face of its customers. In South Florida, for example, the company’s management team is very diverse, and the region had the highest customer satisfaction scores for 2007.

Staples also hosts an international management trainee program. Associates from around the world are brought to headquarters for 12 weeks of intensive training and an energetic exchange of best practices and innovation.

Since 2004, Staples has increased spending with diverse suppliers by 67 %. The company provides training for its diversity suppliers at the annual Diversity Supplier Workshop & Summit, which gives diversity suppliers direct contact with and targeted guidance from senior leaders. Staples offers mentoring to its suppliers to help them build capacity within their organizations. The mentoring efforts are paying off, as suppliers are seeing growth in sales, profitability, job creation, and market share.

30. AstraZeneca International

London, UK, Wilmington, DE

67,000 employees


Pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca has about 67,000 employees, $31.6 billion in sales and is active in more than 100 countries.

Despite its size, its culture is one where continuous dialogue and feedback are priorities. Regular meetings between managers and individuals, as well as an annual performance review, provide not only an opportunity to discuss work objectives and progress, but also to plan any further personal development that may be required to achieve the objectives, and to consider longer-term goals. Cross-functional moves and global mobility are encouraged and supported. The company’s intranet is being fine- tuned to communicate job opportunities more effectively within the company worldwide. An online global center for learning and development provides information and ideas on personal developing planning.

Diversity is included in the company’s senior executive team talent (SET) management objectives and it has a set of minimum standards that support global alignment in the integration of diversity and inclusion into the human resources process.

As an indicator, 21% of the 82 senior managers reporting to the SET are women. The change from 2007 (26% of 82 senior managers), isn’t a result of reduced commitment to diversity, but a consequence of its continued reorganization of the company at all levels, which impacts SET reporting lines.

#31 PricewaterhouseCoopers International Ltd.

New York, NY

155,693 employees


One of the world’s largest accounting and accounting services firms, PwC is committed to developing and promoting women within its ranks. The Gender Advisory Council, a diverse, multinational group led by the CEO, is at the heart of their efforts.  Its aims are to make the case throughout the entire company for better female retention and development, recommend actions and initiatives in support of leadership development, and promote accountability for reaching diversity goals. The council in 2007 launched a blog, The Gender Agenda, to discuss issues faced by women in business.  Additionally, it has published numerous papers on diversity, including “The Leaking Pipeline,” a 2007 study based on interviews with 79 female leaders within PwC’s global network, on issues pertaining to women in leadership roles. The study explores obstacles women face in advancing at professional services firms, and recommends ways to build gender diversity that both promotes the advancement of women in the workplace and increases profitability.

Programs in place in various international sites include coaching, mentoring, networking and bias awareness training. Both the company and several women leaders have received numerous honors from around the world for their efforts to inspire, develop and promote women into major leadership roles.

#32 Boston Consulting Group

Boston, MA

3,900 consultants


With more than 65 offices in 35 countries, BCG relies upon and values a diverse team to solve a variety of business challenges for its clients.  The company maintains four diversity networks to help make BCG a better place to work, as well as a more effective company.

The Women’s Initiative helps to recruit the best available female talent for the firm, and retain and advance current BCG women through effective management of their careers. It provides a formal and informal network of mentors and role models within the firm, and facilitates participation at various events and conferences.  The LGBT Network provides global support, assists in candidate outreach and raises awareness of LGBT issues. It puts on an annual community building retreat, holds quarterly information sharing conference calls and sponsors outreach dinners for LGBT candidates at top business schools each year.

BCG’s Black/African American Initiative seeks to recruit, develop, and retain consultants and associates. The Hispanic/Latino Initiative focuses on increasing BCG awareness on college and university campuses. It also supports multicultural marketing in the United States, and partners with the Black/African American Initiative to identify opportunities to support black and Latino community development.

#33 Cisco Systems, Inc.

San Jose, CA

67,000 employees


Cisco, the well-known supplier of business networking tools and solutions for the Internet, is growing a diverse team, with two-thirds of its U.S. hires in 2007 and 2008 either women or people of color. Cisco formed the Global Inclusion and Diversity Council in 2007 to integrate inclusion and diversity into business processes and operations at all levels. Council members also serve as executive sponsors for major diversity programs and key communicators of the diversity message.

The company sponsors 11 employee resource groups, which undertake projects ranging from recruitment and retention to community outreach.  The groups also plan and conduct quarterly events focused on leadership development skills. Additionally, Cisco offers employees an array of educational opportunities to learn more about the importance of an inclusive and diverse workplace, including a breakout session on inclusion and diversity at the annual offsite retreat for senior leaders.

The Compass Series gives female senior managers exposure to executives and opportunities to network with cross-function peers in two sessions per year.  The Perspective Series helps directors and above build executive-level leadership skills and hosted the Women’s Leadership Offsite meeting.  The company also facilitates participation in external developmental programs.

#34 Goldman Sachs

New York, NY

30,000 employees


Since the establishment of its formal Diversity Committee in 1990, the global financial services firm has made continued strides to promoting and supporting an inclusive workplace. In 2001, Goldman Sachs established the Office of Global Leadership and Diversity to translate the firm’s diversity commitments into specific actions that promote diversity and inclusion.

Goldman Sachs offers programs and initiatives to strengthen the retention and promote the development of diverse talent both within the firm and across the financial services industry. These programs often feature targeted events designed to provide visible role models, facilitate commercial development, encourage networking and comprehensively acknowledge the issues that can affect individuals in targeted populations.

Five Affinity Networks support people from historically underrepresented populations in building communities within the company and in bridging differences across the firm.  The groups develop initiatives to help create and develop a diverse employee population. They drive networking forums, training and education events, leadership conferences and client events. A member of the firm’s Management Committee acts as a sponsor to each of the networks. In addition, the firm sponsors a Disability Taskforce to ensure that employees with disabilities are able to realize their potential within the firm.

#35 Genentech, Inc.

South San Francisco, CA

11,000 employees


Somehow, it makes sense for a biotechnology company that discovers, develops, manufactures and commercializes medicines to treat patients with serious or life-threatening medical conditions, to have DNA as the acronym for its diversity plan, Diversity In Action.  The three-point plan revolves around recruiting a diverse talent pool, developing full potential and capability, and including a diversity of perspectives. Its Scholars program has awarded more than $500,000 to 98 diverse high school and college students in Northern and Southern California to attend school and work as Genentech interns, and it supports the work of organizations like Sisters Network, Asian American Donor Program and Latinas Contra Cancer in bridging the multi-ethnic health gap.

The DNA metaphor carries over to Genentech’s Diversity Network Associations, employee groups that maintain a grassroots diversity effort through strategic community and educational initiatives both on campus and off, in alignment with the company’s long-term vision.  DNA Groups represent eight distinct groups across race/ethnicity, gender, orientation and age distinctions.  Leaders from each of these groups join with the corporate diversity staff to form the Diversity Council, which meets monthly to support and drive diversity at the company.

#36 Compuware Corp.

Detroit, MI

5,600 employees


Compuware, an industry leader in enterprise software and IT services, sees as its foundation a diverse workforce with common personal and professional attributes. Its branded diversity initiative, Compuware Voices, recognizes and values the role employees, customers, vendors, government agencies and community partners each play in building the company’s strength.  The commitment starts at the top, with a board of directors diverse in age, gender and ethnicity and featuring a diversity and community relations subcommittee.  Diversity is also part of the company’s training program, with all managers required to go to the full-day “Managing Inclusion” seminar and a half-day seminar offered for non-supervisors.

Resource groups for African-Americans, Hispanic, Asian Indian and Chinese employees keep Compuware leadership in touch with these populations within the workforce, and support recruitment, cultural exchange (including celebrations at the company of major diverse holidays), and community outreach.  The company supports both the community at-large and the future of the IT industry by sponsoring a team of high school students in the annual Black Data Processing Association computer competition.  It also has a Voices Book Club, with monthly selections on different groups in the community.

# 37 Hewlett Packard Co.

Palo Alto, CA

321,000 employees


The importance of diversity is clearly reflected in HP’s corporate objectives, created by company founders Bill Hewlett and Dave Packard more than 50 years ago.  The company strives to demonstrate it commitment to its employees “by promoting and rewarding based on performance and by creating a work environment that reflects our values.”  That sense is supported by corporate values such as working together to create a culture of inclusion, and believing that each person’s contribution is critic to the company’s success.

HP’s formal commitment to diversity dates back to the first official diversity statement issued by the CEO in the late 1970s, and the establishment of a black managers network.  Today, a global diversity division supports business success worldwide at the corporate level, and a diversity council of senior leadership from each HP business develops, directs and champions diversity initiatives.  The company has several diversity-friendly policies and practices, including employee network groups and, since the ‘90s, domestic partner benefits.

#38 Microsoft

Redmond, WA

91,300 employees


Since Microsoft formed an official diversity team in 1992 to concentrate on affirmative action efforts and community outreach, its diversity programs have become more strategic in nature, with added concentration on training and awareness, supplier diversity, targeted recruiting efforts, and integration of diversity and inclusion into every level of the company.

Diversity education programs ensure that employees have the tools and resources they need to grow professionally. The emphasis is on understanding and valuing differences, and leveraging them in order to compete effectively in an ever-changing marketplace. Microsoft is committed to attracting talented women to the company, providing generous work/life balance programs and leadership- and career-development opportunities.  A formal mentoring program that helps each employee find diverse role models and advisors, is open to all employees.

Microsoft College Recruiting seeks out diverse talent at all schools and specifically targets historically underrepresented institutions.  In addition to recruiting at these schools, the company focuses on diversity recruitment through campus organizations and national chapters such as Minority Engineering Program, National Society of Black Engineers, Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers and Society of Women Engineers.

#39 KPMG

Amstelveen, Netherlands

135,600 employees


“Diverse” doesn’t even begin to describe the scope of KPMG’s operations. It provides audit, tax and advisory services to companies in more than a dozen industries, and operates in more than 140 countries.  That explains why diversity is championed at the highest levels by the senior partners. Some member firms provide networking forums for women and people from a wide range of ethnic groups. All member firms actively look for different approaches, skills, experience and opinions in recruiting candidates.  KPMG has a strong coaching culture, and is committed to providing mentors and/or career coaches to employees considering advancement.  It is also strongly committed to employee development, with extensive training programs at both the member firm and corporate levels.

#40 Qualcomm

San Diego, CA

15,400 employees


In just 25 years, Qualcomm has grown from seven people meeting in a den into an $11 billion provider of wireless services and technology. That growth wouldn’t have been possible without a corporate culture that values the many competencies and perspectives a diverse workforce can provide.  Qualcomm sees diversity and inclusion as encompassing people, communication and technology.

The company has recently added an employee resource group dedicated to the mission of Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) to its lineup, which includes groups for blacks, GLBT, women, and a society of Hispanic engineers. The company partners with numerous professional and civic organizations to help develop diverse talent, including the National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering and the National Consortium for Graduate Degrees for Minorities in Engineering and Science. Further, its “Q” Awards of Excellence Scholarships recognize minority engineering students at select universities through their academic achievement, leadership skills and interest in wireless communications and the field of engineering. It is a past winner of the Secretary of Labor’s Opportunity Award, based on its ongoing commitment to equal employment opportunity, including its commitment to addressing current and future employment issues, and for its corporate social responsibility efforts.

#41 Aetna Inc.

Hartford, CT

35,500 employees


Aetna serves 36.5 million people with information and resources to help them make better informed decisions about their health care. Two tenets of the strategy to be “the industry leader in the diverse marketplace” are to build a workforce that fully understands the diverse communities where the company does business, and to develop a diverse supplier base reflecting the company’s multicultural environment.

32 percent of Aetna’s employees are people of color. People of color hold 15 percent of management/supervisory positions and 10 percent of senior leaders are people of color. 76 percent of employees are women, women hold 62 percent of management/supervisory positions, and 30 percent of senior leaders are women.

Through its Emerging Markets organization, Aetna seeks to drive incremental business through multicultural/multilingual relationships, develop culturally relevant marketing materials, and enhance market presence within targeted business communities. The 28th edition of its African American History Calendar (2009) focuses on healthy communities and health and wellness across the nation to help empower African Americans take control of their health. Organizations such as the Center for Black Women’s Wellness and 100 Black Men are assisting in the effort. Additionally, for the second year, Aetna has produced a bilingual Hispanic calendar.

#42 Google

Mountain View, CA

20,200 employees


Google believes that to meet the needs of its ever-growing user population, it needs a broad diversity of perspectives and voices in the creation of its products. English-speaking users comprise only 30 percent of the total Internet population, and Google believes that to be competitive internationally its products need to speak all the languages its users speak.

Google’s 11 employee resource groups (ERGs) get a great deal of company support and draw their membership from across the globe. Google ERGs create networks within the company that reach across functional and national boundaries to strengthen the company’s retention programs. They provide valuable feedback about the workings of Google’s HR programs and policies, and valuable opportunities for personal growth and professional development.

The company partners with professional organizations such as Forum for Women Entrepreneurs and Executives, Girl Geek Dinners, Anita Borg Institute, and Human Rights Campaign. It shares with them the common goal of diversifying the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) fields, by bringing together thought leaders, conducting workshops, and providing networking and professional development opportunities. Google’s Diversity Internship Program offers technology industry exposure to historically underrepresented students.

#43 Cornell University

Ithaca, NY

14,400 employees


Cornell University seeks to foster diversity on a number of fronts – with faculty, women, students and suppliers. The Cornell Faculty Institute for Diversity helps faculty members incorporate diverse perspectives and experiences into their courses by engaging small groups of faculty in complex discussions about diversity. Each spring, the university sponsors the Constance E. Cook and Alice H. Cook Awards to honor individuals for their commitment to women’s issues and for improving the climate for women at Cornell. Another award, the James A Perkins Prize for Interracial Understanding and Harmony, recognizes a Cornell student, faculty, staff member or program making the most significant contribution to furthering the ideal of university community while respecting the values of racial diversity.

The university’s Office for Supply Management Service fosters a commitment to the development of significant and mutually beneficial business relationships with diversity-owned suppliers. Cornell’s University Diversity Council is charged with initiating programs the advance diversity.  One student organization, Breaking Bread, seeks to build networks that cross traditional social boundaries by providing student organizations with funding and other resources to organize joint small group activities and collaborative programming.

#44 IBM Corp.

Armonk, NY

386,600 employees


IBM believes that its focus on global workforce diversity is a cornerstone of its strategy to differentiate itself as one of the world’s great technology companies. With employees in more than 75 countries and doing business in more than 170 countries, IBM believes that recognizing and valuing a culture of diversity and inclusiveness is an essential part of attracting and retaining the best talent.

IBM views effective management of its workforce diversity policy as an important strategic objective, and every IBM manager is expected to abide by the policy and uphold the company’s commitment to workforce diversity. In its commitment to achieving a diverse workforce, IBM has initiated a global strategic framework for diversity to address how it responds to emerging trends in the countries where it helps its clients do business. IBM’s objective is to create an environment that maximizes its employees’ productivity and connection to the enterprise on a global scale.

IBM is a charter member of the Billion Dollar Roundtable, an organization comprised of companies that spend $1 billion or more annually with diverse suppliers. Like past top IBM executives, CEO and President Sam Palmisano is personally involved with seeking opportunities for next-generation minority engineers.

#45 Toyota Motor Engineering

& Manufacturing North America

Torrance, CA
11,000 employees


Toyota commitment’s to diversity is an integral part of its success, and it believes this commitment must continue to grow sales. With a comprehensive strategy rooted in the Toyota principles of continuous improvement and respect for people, the company believes it has an opportunity to become a leader in corporate diversity.

Toyota’s seven-member Diversity Advisory Board consists of some of the country’s most recognized leaders in the fields of diversity, including former Secretary of Labor Alexis Herman. The board’s main purpose is to bring expert outside perspectives to help shape and maintain Toyota’s commitment to diversity. The Board’s guidance and recommendations have helped Toyota achieve many of its 21st Century Diversity Plan objectives. The Toyota Diversity Strategy is a 10-year, multi-billion dollar sustainable commitment to minority participation in Toyota. Central to the strategy is securing the support of senior management, establishing actionable stretch targets, and committing the company to internal training and education.

As a member of the Billion Dollar Roundtable, Toyota is focused on creating and increasing relationships with minority businesses. Its vision is to develop a strong foundation of highly qualified minority-owned suppliers through innovative sourcing strategies. Toyota’s annual Opportunity Exchange trade fair and conference seeks to develop lasting business relationships between its Tier I suppliers and diverse businesses.

#46 Mattel Inc.

El Segundo, CA

30,000 employees


At Mattel, a leader in manufacturing and marketing of toys and family products, including the enduring Barbie, Hot Wheels, Matchbox, American Girl, Radica and Fisher-Price brands, a guiding principle is that “Everyone Plays.” That principle is behind its diversity efforts through its Office of Global Diversity, allowing it to understand the business opportunities in various markets around the world and develop products that resonate with consumers in diverse cultures. Nearly half of Mattel’s sales today are generated from outside the United States, and the company believes its greatest potential for future revenues will be from emerging markets.

Mattel is committed to a number of initiatives to encourage inclusion within its workforce, including its long relationship with the INROADS internship program that places talented minority youth in business and industry and prepares them for corporate and community leadership. Through INROADS, 117 young men and women have interned at Mattel. Mattel also actively recruits at the National Black MBA Association and National Society of Hispanic MBA conferences. Additionally, Mattel recognizes the importance of supplier diversity in all aspects of its procurement practices, which is included in its global diversity initiative, notes Robert A. Eckert, chairman and CEO.

#47 MasterCard International

Purchase, NY

5,500 employees


MasterCard International defines diversity from a multidimensional perspective that encompasses diverse skills, knowledge, viewpoints, cultures and nationalities. Its approach is to create a high-performance culture “that embraces and leverages our total diversity.” MasterCard believes that each employee offers different strengths, views, and experiences, and these very differences create opportunities for growth, innovation and success.

MasterCard’s Global Diversity and Inclusion Council helps management drive an agenda for change and guide the implementation of the company’s Global Diversity and Inclusion vision and strategy. The council, chaired by the CEO, meets quarterly and is comprised of senior leaders from each MasterCard global business units and regions. Council members serve as ambassadors of the diversity vision and strategy via ongoing communication and regular business activity.

The Global Diversity and Inclusion Council also drives MasterCard’s commitment to working with a wide range of high quality suppliers and partners from an inclusive pool of diverse resources. The company seeks to incorporate employment- and supplier diversity campaigns with its existing award-winning corporate brand, “Priceless,” through recruiting messages designed to resonate with different audiences, Additionally, the company supports diverse community organizations through philanthropy programs and outreach programs. Employees are encouraged to participate in volunteer activities of programs that assist the community and the organizations employees care about.

#48 New York Life

New York, NY

14,850 employees


Without a richly diverse corporate culture, New York Life Insurance Co. could not have achieved the success it enjoys today, according to CEO Ted Mathas. Rather than expect employees and agents to adapt themselves to a single way of doing business, Mathas encourages everyone to bring their own cultural and intellectual perspectives to the table. New York Life, the largest mutual life insurance company in the United States and one of the largest life insurers in worldwide, is committed to fostering an inclusive environment for all employees. The company welcomes the opportunity to recruit from the communities it serves, recognizing that employees have unique qualities that lead to a more productive and dynamic workplace.

New York Life is an original sponsor of Minority Interchange, a forum for minorities in the insurance industry, and sponsors the Minority Interchange Weekend Career Conference, which hosts company employees offsite for the purpose of attending career workshops and networking with colleagues around industry issues. The company has sent more than 525 people to this annual career conference. In December 2006, the New York Life Foundation established The New York Life Endowment for Emerging African–American Issues at the Colin Powell Center for Policy Studies in New York, a $10 million gift that provided permanent funding for scholarships and programming at The City College of New York.

#49 Starbucks

Seattle, WA

160,000 employees


The worldwide (16,680 stores at the end of 2008) coffee giant lives by a simple equation: inclusion plus equity plus accessibility equals diversity.  In practice, that means creating an atmosphere where all employees (or “partners”) can be themselves, and treat each other with dignity and respect.

Starbucks maintains partner networks for Blacks, Hispanics, disabled employees, GLBT, and military veterans, plus an emerging workforce network to support employees needing flexible work-life balance solutions.  The company supports several diversity organizations, including the United States Business Leadership Network and the Multicultural Food and Hospitality Alliance. Starbucks’ Diversity Leadership Teams is a formalized program to engage leaders at all levels of the company in taking action toward integrating diversity and inclusion principles into the way they operate their business units, regions or functions.

Starbucks’ partnership with Magic Johnson’s Urban Coffee Opportunities helps introduce Starbucks to ethnically diverse communities throughout the country. Additionally, Starbucks actively engages in community outreach efforts, including through the regional affiliate of the National Minority Supplier Development Council. It has collaborated with several other organizations to establish a model Supplier Diversity Training Program for buyers. In fiscal 2007, Starbucks spent $350 million with Tier One diverse suppliers, exceeding internal goals of $250 million.

Starbucks prides itself on its social responsibility efforts, under the branded banner Shared Planet. The three tenets are ethical sourcing (buying responsibly grown, ethically traded coffee), environmental stewardship (reducing its environmental footprint) and community involvement (1 million hours of community service per year).

#50 Xerox Corp.

Norwalk, CT

57,100 employees


Xerox’s commitment to diversity is evident at every level, including the very top.  With chairman/CEO Anne M. Mulcahy and president Ursula M. Burns, the document management technology and services company is one of the few major American corporations with women in the top two leadership positions.  They’re not alone: one in five at the vice president level or higher are women, and 23% are professionals of color. Further, Xerox’s 11-member board of directors has three black members and four female members.

The Xerox Diversity Council, a 15-member executive body supported by the CEO, offers reviews, recommendations and advice on practices, supports plans, and evaluates the company’s effectiveness at fostering diversity. The Council helps ensure diversity and work environment initiatives that represent the balanced needs of all Xerox employees.  Six employee caucus groups provide a bridge between management and the workplace at-large.  Xerox spreads the message to all employees through communications, education and training. Under the company’s Inclusive Workplace Strategy, senior managers are evaluated on their ability to hire, develop and promote a diverse workforce. The strategy is designed to improve imbalances in representation at all levels in the Xerox workforce.

The company is also active in paving the way for tomorrow’s workforce.  Its Technical Minority Scholarship Program provided 122 scholarships for deserving students in 2008, and it supports the For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST) Robotics Competition and FIRST Lego League Competition.


  1. Hi Jacquelin,
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