At IBM Global Services, diversity means welcoming all people to the workplace, regardless of factors unrelated to job performance. It is a way of life that began almost 80 years ago when the company started to expand internationally.
Today, our commitment extends beyond integrating people of different nationalities. It includes everyone and excludes no one. Race, gender, geographic origin, culture, lifestyle, age, disability, sexual orientation, economic status, marital status and religion are just some of the characteristics that define us as people. As are our unique needs -- for example, the need to take care of children or the elderly.
To increase our focus on local or unique diversity issues, IBM has established Diversity Councils. Through them, we can make sure that our workforce represents an environment that visibly encourages and values the contributions and differences of employees from various backgrounds. Diversity Council objectives include: heightening employee awareness, increasing management sensitivity and encouraging the effective utilization of our diverse workforce. These are accomplished through key initiatives such as recruiting, mentoring and educating employees.