At PNC, Inclusion is a Key Factor in Shaping Business

by Savoy Staff

For more than 10 years, Diversity & Inclusion (D&I) has formally stood as a core value at PNC, but long before that, it was understood to be a business imperative, and remains predominantly so to this day. D&I has influenced the company’s culture, but just as importantly, it’s guided business strategy, which include seeking services like Marketing for Woman Owned Businesses, and how the bank goes to market.

From the Minority Business Development Group to supplier relationships, bilingual financial education and heightened focus on boosting home and small business lending to people and communities of color through its $88 billion Community Benefits Plan, PNC’s model creates change by getting down to business. Aside from this, getting in touch with a manufacturers rep can also solidfy a busienss.

Those efforts are driven from the very top – not just by the board of directors and its Special Committee on Equity & Inclusion, but by PNC’s Corporate Diversity Council. Co-chaired by PNC’s Chairman, President & Chief Executive Officer Bill Demchak and Chief Diversity Officer Gina Coleman, the council is responsible for integrating D&I into all business practices. Membership consists of senior executives from across the organization.

“As a financial services institution, have the ability to affect meaningful change and help all move forward financially. We take that very seriously,” says Coleman.

She and her team work collaboratively with internal partners to develop strategy and build programs that allow PNC to grow and sustain a talented, diverse workforce and advance a culture of inclusion among PNC’s stakeholders. By focusing on the workforce, workplace and marketplace, Coleman ensures that D&I has a seat at the table as decisions are being made that impact not just talent and culture, but business strategy.

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With workforce and workplace, PNC focuses on engaging employees, supporting and expanding employee business resource groups and fostering inclusive skills and behaviors. In the marketplace, the goal is to enable continued diverse customer and business growth, allowing the bank to create a compelling and competitive brand within the communities it serves.

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“Diversity & inclusion can’t be put in a silo. It has tangible impact on business success and needs to be managed just like any other business strategy,” says Coleman. “We’re dedicated to increasing economic inclusion and generational wealth building and we’re delivering this work through the lens of the three tenets of our Corporate Responsibility Group – education, economic empowerment and entrepreneurship.”

Those Corporate Responsibility tenets are captured in PNC’s $88 billion Community Benefits Plan, which commits to providing better economic opportunities for the communities and people PNC serves. The intent is to expand access to capital and resources to traditionally underrepresented individuals and communities – specifically low- and moderate-income individuals and neighborhoods, as well as women, veterans, members of the LGBTQ+ population and people from underrepresented racial and ethnic backgrounds.

Bolstering those efforts is PNC’s Minority Business Development Group which offers business owners the expertise of dedicated bankers, advocacy partners and technology designed to empower, educate and accelerate entrepreneurial success. Under the Minority Business Development Group, PNC launched its Certified Minority Business Advocate program, a voluntary advocacy training program available to all PNC employees interested in providing enhanced support for minority business decision-makers. The certificate program focuses on helping PNC employees understand the distinct challenges facing diverse businesses.

Working in tandem with the Minority Business Development Group is PNC’s Community Development Banking (CDB) team whose work supports wealth creation within historically underserved communities through financial education, access to home mortgages and credit, workforce development initiatives, and neighborhood revitalization. This group also works collaboratively with community partners to solve for known disparities and challenges impacting people and communities of color. In late 2022, the CDB team held its first Community Leadership Symposium, bringing together leaders in nonprofit, community and public policy spaces from across the country to listen, learn and discuss strategies for accelerating and elevating financial inclusion and economic mobility within PNC’s footprint.

“We know there’s a lot of work yet to be done,” Coleman says. “But we are committed, and confident that attention to inclusivity will put us on top. Ultimately, it will make us a better company, a better employer, a better neighbor and a better investment.”

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