FedEx-2As Senior Vice President and Chief HR and Diversity Officer at FedEx Express, the world’s largest express transportation company, Shannon A. Brown oversees more than 160,000 team members representing diverse backgrounds and cultures. Customers depend on this diverse team and network to provide fast and reliable service to every U.S. address and more than 220 countries and territories. In his role, Brown leads the diversity focus and directs all human resources practices, policies and operations.

Throughout the company’s 42-year history, FedEx has put its people first – both because it’s the right thing to do and because it makes sound business sense. “FedEx is a technology-smart company where team members all over the world come together around a single mission – to give our customers the best experience,” says Brown. “Because we serve a diverse world, we are ever mindful that diversity in business is much more than achieving headcounts. It’s about recognizing and nurturing talent in all ethnicities and backgrounds. It means creating the best opportunities for talented people to succeed, and giving back to our communities so that others will have a chance to fulfill their dreams.”

The company’s diversity goals include heightening cultural awareness through education and communications; recruiting, developing and promoting diverse talent; and supporting multicultural programs through strong community engagement. “The U.S. Census projection that by 2050, the U.S. population will be 50 percent minority means that the diversity of employees, customers and future leaders will continue to increase,” explains Brown. “As a result, developing talent among minorities and women is critical to our support of diverse present and future leadership throughout our operations.”

Recruiting at diverse colleges and among minority- and women-centered organizations and agencies ensures that FedEx continues to be as diverse as the world it serves. “If we want new ideas, we need people from different backgrounds, people who think differently, people who will see things we don’t, and people who have different perspectives from ours,” says Brown. “We must make an ongoing effort to celebrate the uniqueness of each person while recognizing the things we all share.”

Other strategic initiatives relative to diversity include the FedEx Express Vice Presidents’ Diversity Council, chaired by Brown. The council, comprised of executives representing each of the company’s divisions, meets regularly and works to ensure greater awareness and positive perception of the company’s diversity commitment. Council members also serve as sponsors to the eight employee resource groups that include African-American, Asian, Hispanic, Cancer Support, LGBT & Friends, Multi-faith, Women, and U.S. Military Veterans networks.

Brown joined FedEx at age 21 as a cargo handler. Throughout his 37-year career, he has continued to serve as a mentor to many employees and students. During his tenure, FedEx has consistently been ranked on Fortune’s list of the “World’s Most Admired Companies” and Black Enterprise’s “Top 40 Best Companies for Diversity.”

0 comment

You may also like