32. Torod Neptune, Lenovo

To have any chance of winning his company's business, worldwide CCO Torod Neptune insists on PR firms genuinely having diversity and inclusion at the top of their agendas.

As one of the most senior Black PR leaders in the industry, Torod Neptune has led with actions rather than words in ensuring diversity is top of mind within his own teams as well as among the agency partners of the Chinese tech giant Lenovo he joined in 2017.

In this role and his previous tenure at U.S. telecom company Verizon, Neptune insists his PR firms genuinely have diversity and inclusion at the top of their agendas, otherwise they don’t win his business: “We look at metrics quarterly and that is a part of the evaluation for considering new work and ongoing work.”

He notes that agencies also need to behave and operate more as strategic consultants and business advisers than the historical role they traditionally played as tacticians.

To that end, Neptune is taking functions such as communications technology in-house, building proprietary systems from scratch based on expertise at Lenovo’s Chinese HQ.

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