It has been 14 months since we Automotive News launched our first monthly report dedicated to diversity, equity and inclusion within the industry, DE&I at Work. And in today’s issue, we honor 18 Difference Makers with our second Notable Diversity Champions.
As all corners of the automotive industry, including corporate offices, factories, showrooms, service and repair shops, and the financial institutions that underwrite car purchases, understand why the creation of a diverse, fair and inclusive work environment benefits the bottom line, such efforts are still sometimes achieved. with resistance.
We hear arguments suggesting that DE&I policies are a form of reverse discrimination that could violate the rights of others. I’m no legal expert, but I’m sure the multibillion-dollar corporations that each have an army of competent attorneys would quickly refute DE&I’s supposed illegalities.
Most companies that are serious about DE&I — General Motors, Honda Motor Co., and Mercedes-Benz, to name a few — have released publicly available reports detailing the demographic makeup of their workforces and their leadership ranks, and have set goals for doing business. with minority and female vendors.
Let’s be clear about one thing: discriminatory and exclusionary treatment is not the DE&I point. The goal is to open the door to capable people of different races, genders, religions, sexualities, geographic regions, and professional backgrounds who otherwise wouldn’t even have a foothold because of the implicit biases of decision makers. Why is it so important to have a diverse group of workers? Because customers, allies and business rivals also come from very diverse backgrounds, and understanding them is good business.