Fostering Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
Be the Most Inclusive
Company in the World
GM seeks to become the most inclusive company in the world, and will build upon a track record of inclusive actions as we do so.
For the Road Ahead:
- In June 2020, we pledged to become the most inclusive company in the world. The promise to swiftly address any evidence of racism and injustice within our facilities, our supply chain and our global network is one we take seriously.
- Our ability to meet the needs of a diverse and global customer base is tied closely to diversity and inclusiveness of the people within our company, which is why we are committed to fostering a culture that celebrates our differences.
- Women hold 32.2 percent of GM’s top management positions within two levels of the CEO, and we are the only major U.S. company with both a female CEO and CFO.
- Our efforts to date are still challenged by our ability to reach the level of diversity and inclusion we seek within our company.
- Ensuring a diverse pool of qualified candidates is consistently considered for openings and promotions
- Increasing the representation of women and other people who are traditionally underrepresented groups in our succession planning within our management ranks
- Helping every employee in every GM facility understand and put into action how they can contribute to the vision of being the most inclusive company in the world
- Identifying and eliminating the potential for bias that may exist within our business practices and talent management processes
- Leveraging the power of our voice to advocate for a future with equity and inclusion for all
In the days following the homicide of George Floyd in Minneapolis, shock and protests reverberated throughout the country and around the world.
CEO Mary Barra moved decisively to communicate GM’s position to our employees around the world. Her message stated unequivocally GM’s intolerance of racism and injustice while also setting a bold aspiration: to be the most inclusive company in the world. “Let’s stop asking ‘why’ and start asking ‘what.’ What are we going to do?”
Specifically, Barra reaffirmed GM’s unwavering position on the following:
- We commit to inclusion — that means creating the conditions where every single human who believes in inclusion is welcome within our walls.
- We unequivocally condemn intolerance — that means racism, bigotry, discrimination and any other form of named or unnamed hatred.
- We stand up against injustice — that means taking the risk of expressing an unpopular or polarizing point of view, because complacency and complicity sit in the shadow of silence.
Barra also announced that by the end of second quarter 2020, she would commission and chair an Inclusion Advisory Board of both internal and external leaders. The Board’s initial purpose will be to consult with GM’s Senior Leadership Team with the long-term goal of inspiring the company to be the most inclusive in the world. She concluded the message by reminding all that awareness leads to dialogue... dialogue leads to understanding... and understanding leads to change.
It has never been more clear that what we at GM are doing to advance equity and inclusion is not enough. The following pages outline where we are now. We’re not satisfied with the progress that we have made, and we commit to being radically transparent about the work that must be done internally, with our supply chain and beyond, to become the most inclusive company in the world. While we are proud of the role we’ve played in expanding opportunities for women in manufacturing and STEM-related fields, we will build on this and do the hard work required to expand equity and inclusion for other underrepresented groups.
Inclusion Advisory Board
- Mary Barra: Chairman and CEO, GM (Chair)
- Tonya Allen: President and CEO, The Skillman Foundation
- Dennis Archer, Jr: CEO, Ignition Media Group and President, Archer Corporate Service
- Kim Brycz: Senior Vice President, Global Human Resources, GM
- Craig Buchholz: Senior Vice President, Global Communications, GM
- Arden Hoffman: Chief People Officer, Cruise
- Todd Ingersoll: President and CEO, Ingersoll Auto of Danbury, and GM Minority Dealer Advisory Council Member
- Gerald Johnson: Executive Vice President, Global Manufacturing, GM
- Telva McGruder: Employee Resource Group At-Large Member, GM
- Mark Reuss: President, GM
- Dhivya Suryadevara: Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, GM
- Matt Tsien: Executive Vice President and Chief Technology Officer, GM
Guiding Principles of the IAB
- We believe that everyone has the responsibility to speak up in the presence of bias and injustice in our world. We will listen and engage in conversations that elevate our collective understanding and inform our actions to address inequality.
- We will not be silent. We will leverage the voice of GM and our brands to contribute to the dialogue condemning injustice and driving inclusion.
- Our words will be supported by actions. We will build on current alliances and establish new ones to advocate for and achieve equality in social justice, education, health care and economic opportunities for blacks and other marginalized groups.
- We believe our partners should reflect our values. Therefore, those who represent us, do business with us or choose to align with us must take action to demonstrate the same level of commitment.
- We will hold ourselves accountable to set the example for diversity and inclusion in the workplace. We will create a safe environment where difference and diversity are respected, valued and reflected in how we recruit, hire, develop and promote.
- We will ensure a more transparent workplace environment that is safe, respectful, free from fear, and promotes and delivers real and measurable outcomes.
As We Seek to Become the Most Inclusive Company,
We Will Build on Our Track Record
First minority supplier program in the auto industry
First Fortune 500 company to have an African American director on its Board
First minority dealer program in the auto industry
First company to sign a letter of support for the National Guard and Reserve
Among the first 500 companies to have an African American Officer
First automaker to run an LGBTQ-specific ad
First and only auto company to have a women’s dealer program
First and only African American Vice President of Global Design in the industry
First female CEO in the auto industry
First female Chair in the auto industry
First auto company to have both a female CEO and CFO
Signatory to the Business Coalition for the Corporate Equality Act
First auto company with a board of directors made up of 55% women
An integral part of GM’s mission to build a workplace of choice is creating an inclusive culture that welcomes and celebrates a diverse workforce.
A McKinsey & Company study found that companies that are demographically diverse are far more likely to outperform their less diverse industry peers. We also believe that our ability to meet the needs and expectations of an increasingly diverse and global customer base is tied closely to diversity and inclusiveness within.
The GM Executive Leadership Team, chaired by our Chairman & CEO, serves as the company’s senior diversity council. Other diversity-focused councils within our organization include the Supplier Diversity Council, Employee Resource Group Leader Council, Disabilities Advisory Council, Minority Dealer Development Council, Women Dealer Development Council, Veterans Leadership Advisory Board, LGBTQ Executive Roundtable, Women’s Advisory Board and the Employee Resource Group (ERG) Executive Champions Roundtable. Further, our Global Chief Diversity Officer chairs the Strategic Diversity Working Group, which aligns all DE&I efforts globally and incorporates inputs from marketing, communications, corporate relations/philanthropy, talent acquisition, public policy and legal. In addition, GM’s diversity initiatives are routinely reviewed with the executive leadership team and the Board of Directors.
In 2019, we conducted our first Segment Inclusion Survey to establish an inclusion baseline for the U.S. The survey was issued to more than 30,000 salaried U.S. employees, with a 24 percent response rate. The survey asked employees their agreement levels on a series of statements across four dimensions of inclusion: valued & belonging; safe & open; empowered & growing; and, respect & equality. Importantly, nearly 6,000 employees who took the survey provided open-ended feedback on inclusive leadership attributes and suggested ways to foster a more inclusive culture within GM.
Highlights of the survey showed that overall, more than 85% of employees who responded to the survey agreed with the statement, “I feel accountable for helping create an inclusive culture.” Conversely, these same employees identified “sense of belonging” and the “ability to be ‘one’s real self” among their top 5 statements of disagreement. And, further analysis and qualitative probing showed that the strength of disagreement on these statements varied significantly by group. The survey findings were shared with GM leaders, their teams and Employee Resource Group leads, along with recommendations, resources and tools to begin the process of understanding and effectively addressing the inclusion gaps identified through the research.
GM also is proud to be a signatory to several CEO pledges including:
- CEO Action for Diversity & Inclusion Pledge, which counts more than 900 CEOs who have committed to take action to cultivate environments where diverse experiences and perspectives are welcomed and where employees feel comfortable to have critical conversations around inclusion.
- The White House Equal Pay Pledge Commitment, which commits to reviewing hiring and promotion processes and procedures to reduce unconscious bias and install equal pay efforts throughout the organization.
- Coalition for the American Dream, through which more than 100 CEOs are calling upon political leaders to act immediately and pass a permanent bipartisan legislative solution to protect Dreamers.
- Business Coalition for the Equality Act, in which GM is the first and only automotive company to support bipartisan legislation establishing clear and comprehensive non-discrimination protections for LGBTQ people in employment and across all other facets of life. GM supports efforts to amend Michigan’s civil rights law to protect lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals as part of Fair and Equal Michigan
2019 – 2020 Driving Diversity Forward: Company Awards
Everyone at General Motors is expected to uphold a set of values and behaviors that are integral to our culture — predicated on an environment where we can all show up to work and contribute fully, free from fear.
We have had our position on zero tolerance for discrimination tested in the past through the unacceptable actions and behaviors of a few employees at our locations. In every case, we took deliberate and swift action to address those issues, and provided re-education and training for our employees to confirm what is expected of those who work for our company.
While we have long been focused on diversity, including racial diversity, we acknowledge that much more work is ahead to ensure our workforce and leadership team are truly diverse. That there is real equity and a measurable culture of inclusion. But, we want to go further than that and are equally committed to ensuring that every GM employee feels a sense of belonging within our company. As part of GM’s efforts to become the most inclusive company in the world, we will cultivate an environment where each person feels they are heard and supported.
So that we can measure and track our progress toward inclusion, in 2019 we conducted a baseline survey of our employees and held empathy interviews and group sessions to better understand our starting point. The findings of our survey were shared with leaders in every function as we take our first steps on this important — and imperative — journey.
Through this qualitative research, we identified three key priorities:
- Ensuring that leaders at GM become more intentional about their responsibility for advancing diversity, equity and inclusion within our company, mitigating bias and championing the Employee Resource Groups and their initiatives.
- Increasing transparency among internal and external stakeholders so that we can acknowledge our shortcomings and create actionable plans for improvement. This report is a starting point, but we will identify further ways to ensure transparency can lead to accountability.
- Facilitating opportunities for our people to forge difficult but necessary conversations around racial equity that help further toward our inclusion vision.
These three needs will factor within our broader corporate strategy for the coming months, and we look forward to updating our stakeholders on our progress.
GM has long been a global leader in advocating for women’s equity in the workplace, with women in 32.2 percent of our top management positions within two levels of the CEO. We are currently the only company among the largest in the U.S. that has both a female Chief Executive Officer and Chief Financial Officer. We have been recognized by organizations such as Equileap and the Bloomberg Gender-Equality Index for gender equality in the corporate sector. Among the reasons: we are one of the few global businesses that have pay equity at the top, middle and bottom bands as well as no overall gender pay gap across the company. We also have policies to combat sexual violence at work, measures to improve supplier diversity and offer flexible hours and flexible work locations to our employees.
Our commitment to the Equal Pay Pledge reflects the value we place on gender equity, our commitment to fostering a diverse and welcoming workplace that values the contributions of all employees, and our shared belief that employees’ protected categories, including gender, should not factor into compensation decisions. We believe that fair and equitable pay should be an essential element of any successful business model, and we are proud to stand with other companies that share this same value. GM conducts gap analyses on an ongoing basis to identify any pay discrepancies and makes adjustments whenever unaccounted for discrepancies are found.
We also have instituted innovative programs to increase representation of women such as Take 2, a program for experienced professionals, often women, who have taken a two-year or longer break from their careers and are ready to rejoin the workforce. The 12-week paid program serves as an “audition” that prepares experienced interns for a full-time career in one of several fields at GM through training, professional development and networking opportunities. Take 2 is currently in its eighth cohort in the U.S.
job offer rate
upon program completion
Other programs supporting women include:
- GM Ally Program was established in 2019 with the purpose of helping us increase our ability to attract, retain and advance female talent, and to build advocacy for sponsoring and mentoring women.
- Global GM Women Councils are aligned around common strategic pillars focused on women’s development, increasing sales to women consumers and supporting the communities where we live and work. In 2019, there were 15 global women’s councils representing 22 countries.
- GM Women’s Bootcamp has been expanded to include all functions and engaged 52 executive-potential women in 2019 to accelerate their development to take on increasing roles in the organization. Momentum will continue by providing a virtual experience for a new cohort of executive-potential women in 2020.
GM’s commitment to the LGBTQ community is at the core of our company’s policies. We have offered same-sex domestic partner benefits for more than a decade and extended same-sex spousal benefits to married LGBTQ couples in 2012. We also have a strong anti-discrimination policy that protects LGBTQ employees at GM. Beyond these measures designed to increase inclusion for our own employees, we recognize the need for a federal standard that guarantees these rights for LGBTQ individuals everywhere. That’s why GM is a signatory to the Business Coalition for the Corporate Equality Act, which provides the same workplace protections to LGBTQ people as are provided to other protected groups under federal law.
GM and our brands are long-time supporters of our armed forces, with veterans making up more than 6 percent of our workforce and 90 current active service members working for the company. We show our appreciation for their service in a number of ways, including the best military discount program of its kind for active duty, reserve and retired members of the military who purchase GM vehicles. We also donate to causes that support and honor veterans, such as the Stephen Siller Tunnels to Towers Foundation and the National Native American Veterans Memorial.
Equity for People with Disabilities
The inclusion of people with disabilities helps drive innovation for our customers and our employees. For example, providing reasonable accommodations for employees who are managing disabilities allows them to perform their best and get the most out of their experience at GM. Reasonable accommodations come in many forms, including adaptive equipment, screen reader software, on-site service animals, alternate parking locations and flexible work arrangements.
But the best ways for engaging with people with disabilities are not always broadly understood. That’s why GM recently introduced a new training course for employees on disability inclusion in the workplace. The course includes real stories from GM employees and is designed to educate our workforce on how they can promote disability inclusion in their work and daily lives. It also explains why it’s important for U.S. employees to self-disclose any disabilities that they are managing that affect their work so that GM can provide any equity tools that may better enable employees to perform.
ERGs are voluntary, employee-led groups that serve as a resource for their constituent members and provide a forum by fostering a diverse, inclusive workplace that aligns with the vision and core values of the company. ERGs provide a forum for employees to share common concerns and experiences, gain professional development support, provide cultural learning for the larger organization and engage in their local communities. We have 11 ERGs, all working toward our corporate effort to make GM the most inclusive company in the world and are proud that one in three GM employees participates in an ERG. ERGs provide us with insights that help us better understand diverse and emerging consumer markets, while offering a platform for our employees to contribute to initiatives within our diverse community. Each ERG also has a business plan tied to talent acquisition, talent development, community outreach and business support. GM ERGs extend to both the U.S. and across the globe.
Our ERGs are essential for nurturing a culture of inclusion, providing employees support and a forum in which to express concerns and share experiences. Each group works to attract new talent to our company.
- African Ancestry Network Group (GMAAN)
- GM Able (formerly People with Disabilities)
- GM Asian Connections (GMAC)*
- GM European Connection (GMEC)*
- JumpStart (New Hires)*
- GM LATINO Network (GMLN)*
- Middle East North Africa Group (MENA)
- Native American Cultural Network (NACN)
- GM PLUS (LGBTQ and Allies)*
- GM Veterans Group
- GM WOMEN*
*ERGs with chapters outside the U.S.
GM has a long legacy of leadership in helping diverse suppliers flourish. In 1968, we became the first OEM to establish a formal supplier diversity program. Over the past five decades, we have spent more than $107 billion with diverse suppliers and contributed to innumerable community initiatives in collaboration with diverse suppliers. GM strives to achieve equitable and sustainable supply chain inclusion goals that ensure long-term viability for our diverse supply base.
We engage with our suppliers through long-standing events such as Supplier Connections, which attracts nearly 1,000 attendees each year. 2019 marked the 10th anniversary of this annual event that provides an average of 100 free booths for suppliers to access in hopes of driving new business and growth opportunities. The day consists of a free trade show, allowing for networking, targeted matchmaking, professional development and opportunities to connect. The event also includes a collaboration with Ideal Group to host a school supply drive that benefits students at Detroit Cristo Rey High School & Holy Redeemer Grade School in Detroit. More than 2,500 school supplies were collected in our latest drive.
Our Supplier Diversity
Mission: Drive I.D.E.A.S.
- Tier I & II spend metrics and sourcing opportunities
- Detroit Cristo Rey and Holy Redeemer school supplies drive
- Five-point supplier curriculum
- Tuck Diverse Development Partnership (Board Chair and Advisory Board Chair with funding of 24 Executive Education scholarships in 2019)
- National Association of Black Suppliers (NABS) scholarship award
- National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO) GirlBiz sponsorship and support
- Four Cristo Rey High School scholarship awards providing scholarships with placement at GM and advocacy partners
- Active memberships and sponsorships with more than 20 national and regional organizations
- In partnership with these organizations, GM holds six board of directors positions and is active on seven subcommittees
- Build relationships and business intelligence with comprehensive Supplier Diversity health checks and annual Supplier Connections event
- Seven out of 19 of GM’s Supplier Council members are diverse suppliers and act as trusted advisors
- GM hosts the annual Supplier Impact Meeting and Awards, which honors suppliers for increasing and improving inclusion within their own supply chains