In September, President and CEO John Turner and head of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI), Clara Green joined the Birmingham Business Journal for a fireside chat exploring a path to a more inclusive local economy as part of the news outlet’s Leaders in Diversity and Inclusion event series. The wide-ranging discussion covered Regions’ efforts to build a culture of inclusion and how that translates into our business strategies, from talent acquisition to supplier diversity and more.
Some highlights from the event include:
John Turner – on the role of the CEO in creating a culture of inclusion
“My role is to be, in addition to Clara, the primary spokesperson, so I’m leading our initiatives; I’m talking about diversity, equity and inclusion; I’m setting the example for the rest of the team as we seek to try to build a culture that is more inclusive. Ultimately, in order to create a more diverse team, we’ve got to start by creating a culture of inclusivity. You can have diversity, but if you don’t have inclusivity, you won’t keep and maintain the diverse teams that you build, so we’ve been working on that.”
Clara Green – on DEI milestones and moving in the right direction
“Understanding what story your data is telling you is important. And so for us, we look at the progression of diverse talent in the organization, we look at representation at the most senior levels in the organization, we looked at retention of diverse talent and if we see gaps, how do we triage that? What do we need to do to close those gaps? It becomes critically important.”
John Turner – on Regions’ role in building a more inclusive economy in Birmingham
“I’m excited about the things going on in Birmingham. We have signed up for the VITAL program (a local initiative to report spending with diverse companies) and today, about 11% of our diverse supplier spend is with VITAL companies here in Birmingham. We’ve got a pipeline of about 14 new companies that we’re working with to try to help them bring their acquisition program up to a standard that will allow them to serve us, and we’re excited about that.”
Interested in reading more? The entire fireside chat is published here on the Birmingham Business Journal site.