By Alex Gorsky, CEO and Chairman of Johnson & Johnson
The presidential campaign in the United States is finally over, and the result stunned the experts and political establishment in America and around the world. Now that the confetti has fallen and the last political ads have finally flickered and faded from view, it is time to ask the one really important question: Now what?
When the campaign promises, accusations and claims are long forgotten, the United States goes on as a nation, as a people. The world goes on. The president-elect has called for us to build the future together, to heal the bitter divisions. That is most important now.
An inscription on the national seal of the United States tells us how to do that: E Pluribus Unum. That phrase in Latin translates to: “from many, one.” From different people of different backgrounds, from many different interests and many opinions, from many talents, strengths and aspirations we are one nation. Now we go forward together. We meet our challenges and opportunities together.
We have learned the strength of that idea at Johnson & Johnson (No. 8 on the DiversityInc Top 50 Companies list). For over 130 years, our business globally has depended on inventing the future of healthcare. From the beginning we learned that innovation is seldom the product of the solitary genius. Rather, true innovations are the product of collaboration. And that collaboration is driven by a diversity of ideas, individuals and disciplines … working together toward a common goal. That has led to breakthrough after breakthrough, from medical miracles that have changed lives to the simple consumer product ideas that have made every day a little better. This process connects our business in over 60 countries to the concerns and hopes of literally billions of people around the globe.
In my travels around the world, meeting with people of Johnson & Johnson from so many different countries and cultures, I see that strength in our global workforce: From many, we are one. Over 125,000 people with one common mission to help people everywhere live longer, healthier and happier lives.
As a company, of course, Johnson & Johnson does not take sides in presidential elections. And our employees represent virtually every political viewpoint. But in the U.S., whether red or blue in politics before the election, now we are all red, white and blue. Together, we will stand by the side of our new president, just as we have done with the current and past administrations. And, we will continue to support the Congress and all state and local leaders. Our future and the future of our children and grandchildren depend on that.
And as the world’s largest and most broadly-based healthcare company, we recognize we have a unique perspective on the needs, wants, hopes and fears about health and wellness of a billion people whose lives we touch around the world every day. We believe that means we also have a unique responsibility. So we will do all we can to help the president and other leaders around the world to meet the challenge of providing the finest healthcare to all citizens, the best possible outcomes at the best possible value.
And while we provide our support, we will not just be quiet bystanders, cynical critics or simply cheerleaders. We will do our best to provide leadership on the health and wellness issues that we understand better than anyone else. And we will stand up and fight for the interests of all of the responsibilities defined in our Credo; the doctors, nurses and patients, the mothers and fathers and all others who use our products, our employees, suppliers and shareholders and the communities in which we live and work.
We will also continue to provide positive economic impact and good jobs wherever we do business. Our company and our employees will continue to contribute many billions of dollars in federal, state and local taxes. We will be active in meeting our civic responsibilities.
I know I speak for all of us at Johnson & Johnson in wishing the new president and all political leaders the best of luck and the best of health. Our nation and the world need the very best they have got to give.