How to make gender equality everyone's responsibility

Diversity and inclusion isn't just the job of the D&I officer.

How to make gender equality everyone's responsibility

Like a lot of Fortune 100 companies, Exelon has an officer dedicated to diversity and inclusion. One of the reasons we have been able to make strides in this critical area is that we recognize it’s not just her job. We all own this, and it requires some big moves, planning, and accountability. 

We were the first energy company to sign the White House Equal Pay Pledge, and we conduct an annual enterprise-wide pay analysis to identify gaps. Women are paid 98 cents for every dollar earned by men in the same roles. 

Senior leaders of the company report quarterly on progress relative to diversity and inclusion hiring, retention, and promotion, and are held accountable. We also provide training, putting leaders through a half-day course on mutual respect that is focused on inclusion. 

See also: What it's like to be black in PR

Our 90-person team, led by Maggie FitzPatrick, SVP of corporate affairs, is two-thirds women and diverse employees, the result of a plan and thoughtful hiring. Having more voices at the table gives us better insight into the communities we serve and helps us tell stories in a more relevant way.

Our diverse team also fosters innovative approaches, leading to better outcomes for our internal clients and external customers. 

There is more to do. About 22% of our employees are women, when they make up roughly half the workforce in the U.S. That fact was a key driver behind our joining the HeForShe United Nations initiative — because you can’t achieve gender equality if it’s only women working toward it.

Our commitment includes an additional $3 million investment in STEM programs for underprivileged girls to help create a greater pipeline into our industry. It also includes a commitment to reach gender parity on retention of women. 

Like safety and security, diversity and inclusion is our collective responsibility. We take it seriously. 

Jean Medina is VP of corporate comms at Exelon

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Already registered?
Sign in