The world was defined this year by the impact of COVID-19, and this summer, by the senseless murder of George Floyd. The global ripple of Floyd’s death shined anew the spotlight on the systemic racism that weighs down our ability to truly progress as a society – to bend Dr. King’s arc.
We recognize there are no simple solutions to systemic racism. However, we believe that Medtronic can play an active role in driving progress. Indeed, this work is perhaps more important now than ever before. We have spoken about the need to act and the urgency that is required, and our company is on the move.
First, Medtronic’s African Descent Network led community conversations about racial justice. Colleagues across the company had the opportunity to listen and learn about what is needed and to understand the sentiments of impatience, and more troubling, doubt – doubt that enough progress can be made.
Second, our company began a series of impactful external commitments to support organizations like the Thurgood Marshall College Fund and Northside Achievement Zone in Minneapolis – to begin a process of using our resources to help our communities.
Third, we held a global Day of Action for Racial Equity Progress where we recommitted ourselves to the importance of inclusion and diversity. Our colleagues from 24 countries around the world contributed thousands of hours and tens of thousands of dollars to social justice organizations throughout the United States.
We are writing now to talk about our fourth – and most meaningful – initiative outlined in our Quarterly Diversity Review in July and ratified by the ExCom this week. We will move to the next phase of our work to accelerate efforts of our Executive Committee leaders. Our goal is to double down on new commitments designed to deliver meaningful, tangible progress and achieve clearly articulated objectives for diversity, inclusion and opportunity.
The following game changing decisions were unanimously approved this week by the Executive Committee. These are the next steps on the journey that Earl Bakken spelled out in Tenet 5 of the Medtronic Mission more than 60 years ago – to value the personal worth of all employees.
Here is what we will implement in FY21 into FY22:
If we do these things, with rigor and conviction, we will transform our I&D promise into reality for all our employees. Medtronic is well positioned to become a global healthcare leader in equity, inclusion and diversity, and it will take the belief and conviction of every one of us — no individual leader can do this alone. We need all of us, from our 10,000 people managers, to our 90,000 employees — to fully make our aspirations a reality.
Abraham Lincoln said, “Commitment is what transforms a promise into reality. It is the words that speak boldly of your intentions. And the actions which speak louder than the words.”
Our call to action starts with the top leaders in our company, but it requires a commitment from all of us to believe in ourselves and each other. Which means recognizing that only with the weight of everyone, together, will we ever be able to bend the arc – and achieve equity and inclusion for all.
Geoff Martha, Chief Executive Officer
Carol Surface, Chief Human Resources Officer
Dr. Sally Saba, Chief Inclusion & Diversity Officer