As much of the world struggles to deal with the effects of climate change, extreme weather and natural disaster, Accenture CEO Julie Sweet offers a timely reminder that every day is an opportunity to help.
In her turn as an Include U instructor — our 30-day challenge on inclusive leadership — Sweet shared some of what she’s learned after spending the better part of a year encouraging Accenture employees to participate in candid conversations about race and their identities.
“Through our Building Bridges dialogues at Accenture, where we have brought together people from diverse backgrounds to have sometimes difficult conversations such as around race, I have experienced the power of storytelling to help people from diverse backgrounds understand each other,” she tells Fortune.
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But to have those conversations, leaders need to consider the broader messages they send. It was that thinking that led the company to publish their workforce demographics for gender, ethnicity, disability, and military service. They were the first major consulting firm to do so, and remain a rarity — only 3% of Fortune 500 companies share their full diversity data.
“Transparency creates trust,” she says. And at Accenture’s level, it resonates: Sweet runs a $16 billion business.
But Sweet also shared an emotional call to action, that stems from the openness and generosity that is part of her nature and a goal of her leadership.
For today’s challenge, Julie Sweet asks you to ask yourself one question: Who have I helped today?
Click here for the emotional backstory.
Fortune’s list of 100 fastest growing companies is now online It’s business and market performance that counts for this list, and only 38 companies returned from last year. (Growth is hard to maintain, y’all.) While some titans still make it — Facebook and Amazon are on it — I’m old enough to remember when I waited breathlessly for this list looking for stock picking ideas, and I still do. But I’m also looking for important strategic trends. One that jumps out from this year’s crop is the growing strength of regional banks who are investing in diverse small businesses. I’m still looking for more, and you should too. Fortune
A new fund continues Philando Castile’s legacy of generosity Castile, who was killed by police during a traffic stop in 2016, was the nutrition services supervisor at J.J. Hill Montessori Magnet School in St. Paul, Minnesota.“Mr Phil,” by all accounts, was adored by many of the students, and was known for paying the tab when low-income kids couldn’t afford their meals. A new fund in his name, “Philando Feeds The Children,” is raising money to cover student lunches and now has more than $62,000 of a $75,000 goal. Huffington Post
Can Levi’s make life better for the people who make your jeans? It’s an ambitious plan, beautifully reported by Fortune’s Erika Fry. There are some 25 million women and men who make up the world’s global apparel supply chain, most of them low-income and vulnerable in very specific ways. “The Levi’s initiative—‘Improving Worker Well-Being,’ officially—is about getting an industry to recognize that workers aren’t faceless cogs in giant profit machines, but people with feelings and needs,” reports Fry. And suddenly those corporate wellness and communication exercises that “suits” do don’t feel so awkward when a sewing machine operator is finally seen as a full human being. Fortune
Trump fans are more likely to react unfavorably to assistance programs when they see an image of a black man In a new study published in Research & Politics, three researchers showed images of black and white men to participants in a series of randomized trials. “They found that when exposed to the image of a black man, white Trump supporters were less likely to back a federal mortgage aid program. Favorability toward Trump was a key measure for how strong this effect was.” The study is part of a growing body of research that shows that even thinking about race triggers conservative responses. It has important implications for public policy. Vox
The Woke Leader
On the value of immigrant communities The economic rationale for limiting immigration is simple: Low wage workers take jobs away from native born workers, particularly those with high school educations. But from an economic perspective, that is far from the entire story. In this this opinion piece by Monica Lozano, Chair of the Aspen Institute Latinos and Society Program, she says it’s easy to forget how much activity immigrants generate. “[W]hile immigrants are often blamed for unemployment among native-born workers, the jobs they create through productivity goes unnoticed,” she says. “[I]mmigrants have a huge impact on the overall growth and strength of the American economy as a whole.” Aspen Institute
Women journalists are ascendant in Trump world It’s the end of toxic macho swagger, declares Vanity Fair. Their rollicking lede paints a grim picture of broadcast media in which the boorish old guard — like Roger Ailes, Sean Hannity and recently fired Charles Bolling — have become emblematic of the personality types who are on the decline. Strong journalistic voices in the age of Trump — think Maggie Haberman, Joy Reid, April Ryan and Rachel Maddow — are “actual fact gatherers and illuminators,” none of whom are “court stenographers.” Vanity Fair
Study: Evolution is not here for your selfishness A new study published in Nature Communications, is upending a long-held notion that selfishness was preferable from an evolutionary perspective. The study revisits game theory experiments – most people will remember that ‘prisoner’s dilemma’ scenario from mathematician John Nash favored selfishness – only to find that any rewards from putting oneself first were short lived. “For many years, people have asked that if he [Nash] is right, then why do we see co-operation in the animal kingdom, in the microbial world and in humans,” said the lead author. BBC