Executive Director and Chief Diversity Officer
Ally Financial, Inc.
Headquarters: Detroit, Michigan
Industry: Financial Services
CEO: Jeffrey J. Brown
Credentials: M.B.A., Queens University; B.A., College of Holy Cross
DEI is a core value at Ally and the financial services company doesn’t hide its light. Leadership holds media interviews and meetings with other leaders within the industry and beyond to discuss opportunities to get more involved in community issues such as financial education, workforce development, equitable housing and access to technology.
The focus on DEI at this company is apparent in the numbers. The number of people of color was up 15 percent in 2022 and female representation at the executive level has remained steady because of higher retention and promotion rates. There has been more than a 50 percent growth in Employee Resource Groups (ERG), internal organizations for employees of different races, ethnicities and genders.
Everyone is encouraged to join or engage with Ally’s eight ERGs, which are conduits for action as well as listening – frequently, the ERGs host “Let’s Talk About It” sessions where employees can share their thoughts and reactions around relevant social justice, equity and inclusivity topics. The discussions are often difficult and raw, but critical in bringing the teams together and fostering a sense of belonging.
Because of difficult and uncertain economic conditions, 2023 will be the year of employee retention and being thoughtful about the approach the firm takes with existing teammates. Primarily, it will be focused on facilitating a ‘human’ approach to leadership and ensuring that the DEI team plays a big role in coaching and teaching managers.
That will also include improving mental health support and resiliency for all employees. Caring for managers and leaders allows them to continue to create an environment where their teammates feel a connection and sense of purpose.