Mary Barra, CEO, General Motors discussed on Katie Couric
From. Business leaders to make the kind of bold statements that Mary and others were making You know because there's there's GonNa be mixed reaction sometimes. People won't believe you right right that they won't believe you I. Was GonNa ask you Mary. About sort of you know we live in such as Senecal Age and I'm wondering if if if you're worried on behalf of other leaders like yourself that that some will view this as sort of flagrant brand opportunism. You know that they are jumping on the bandwagon that they. That that they're not really that sincere in their commitment and I'm curious how you feel about that. I would say I've I've had the opportunity over the last couple of weeks to talk to a lot of CEO's and. It's real it there. I mean you know it's a it's a deep concern, and from that comes a strong commitment, and so I from every all the CEO's that I've talked to I believe it's it's real, and it's sincere, and they're being very authentic, and I would also say with the the response that I received from the letter we shared at General Motors not only did. We have hundreds? In one day we had almost six hundred responses from our employees on our internal site, but I've had dealers reach out to me. Suppliers reach out to me saying, thank you. We believe in this, too, and we WANNA work with you and so. We expected. There would be some pushback or some negativity and other than some skepticism. Which I think is fair. It is some of our employees, said. Hey, yeah, I hear you i. read what you said I wanna see what you're going to do. And I think that's a very fair response, and that's why we're taking steps with the fund set up the initial donation to the N. w. c. p. in the fact that we're already starting our listeners as it happens to be my first listening sessions there have been other leaders that have already been having. Discussions to to to learn and to also provide a a resource to to their employees, because this is such a difficult time To leaders today and she said you know people are exhausted on this issue so troubling and so so difficult. I'm wondering Mary how much you've learned about how to tackle this challenge through your work on gender equality, G., M. has been consistently recognized as one of the world's leading corporations and establishing gender equality. First of all. How do you get other people to follow suit? And what lessons have you learned from those efforts that could be applied to creating a more diverse and. Inclusive workplace and company. Well I would say one of the big lessons. I learned because as I mentioned. You know there was work going on over twenty years ago. That allowed me to have the chances in the opportunities that. Allowed to be ready in considered for the position. I'm in now. Is the company in the late Alito nine time from his. We went through the bankruptcy I realized as we survived. We had to start again so I think what minds that people have to have is this is never done. This is something of or I guess I look for the day when it doesn't need special focus, but I think we're a long way off. From having leaders very deliberate about creating a diverse groups, diverse opportunities and and you know it really gets to I, would say I'm an engineer and so what I've had to challenge myself to do is. I think I would sometimes pick people like me because I was like okay. Well I know I'll get it done so if I pick someone like me, they'll get it done. And recognizing you get a really narrow slice when you do that, and so we've worked really hard to have our leadership team. Not only have a say, gender race from a diversity perspective, but also experiences other companies and Ben Because that. You know very diverse. Thinking I think is allowed. Allowed us to make better decisions than challenge each other, and so I i. really think that we it's something you have to continually focus and and make sure again. It's a business imperative, just as much as you know wanting our next set of electric vehicles, and that's the mindset that we have to have a net one of the learnings. I had because I think at some point, people said okay well. We got that. We're doing well. It's it's a continual focus. You're listening to back to Biz with Katie and bows, and when we come back Mary Barra on GM's decision to stop making cars and start making ventilators. When Mary Barra became CEO OF GM in two thousand fourteen,.