TOP COMPANY FOR EXECUTIVE DEVELOPMENT
NO. 1 ON THE DIVERSITYINC TOP 50 LIST
Kaiser Permanente has the most diverse board of directors and management, especially the top three levels of management, that DiversityInc has seen. The company’s board of directors is half Black, Latino and Asian and 36 percent women, and its top level of management is 38 percent Black, Latino and Asian and 25 percent women.
What types of best practices does Kaiser employ to keep its senior levels so diverse? The company has an exemplary mentoring program and is one of only 26 percent of the DiversityInc Top 50 that offer cultural-awareness training for mentors and mentees before they start their formal relationship. Its employee-resource groups are used for diversity training, mentoring, leadership opportunities and talent development.
Kaiser has exceptionally strong diversity leadership from its chairman and CEO, George Halvorson, who leads the National Diversity Council. What makes Kaiser remarkable is the consistency of its diversity-management efforts, as well as the alignment between diversity in the workplace and diversity in the customer base.
Kaiser first participated in The DiversityInc Top 50 Companies for Diversity in 2005, when it was on the 25 Noteworthy Companies list. It moved to No. 36 on the list in 2006, No. 27 in 2007, No. 7 in 2009 and No. 4 last year. Kaiser’s diversity-management initiatives have jelled in the last five years as a clear reflection of its values and leadership.
Award accepted by Chuck Columbus, chief human resources executive and senior vice president, Kaiser Permanente:
“This recognition helps to remind us of the good work we are doing and why we are doing it. We’ll take this award back and celebrate what it represents, but we’ll celebrate it shortly. There’s still a lot left to do. We still have gaps to address. (In the healthcare world, we call them “disparities.”) For Kaiser Permanente, it’s about carrying on a legacy. We’ve had some long intentional, thoughtful, spirited debates about not just providing the best care but providing the best care for everyone—and that `inspires our work for diversity. It provides a compass for us.”