“Cummins’ success today would not be possible without our deep commitment to diversity. At Cummins, we want to create an inclusive work environment where the diverse ideas and perspectives of our employees drive innovation for solving tomorrow’s business challenges. Diversity will help us better serve our customers around the world and deliver results that will sustain our future growth and success. In short, diversity is critical to our bottom line.”
-Tom Linebarger, Chairman and CEO
Founded in Columbus, Indiana, United States in 1919, Cummins was among the first to understand the commercial potential of an engine technology invented two decades earlier by Rudolph Diesel. Today, Cummins has become a global power leader with more than 60 percent of its sales generated internationally and operations in more than 190 countries.
At its core, Cummins is a family of four interrelated, yet diversified organizations that create or enhance value as a result of doing business with each other. These four businesses - Engine, Power Generation, Components and Distribution - are linked through their shared brand, technology, joint venture partnerships, distribution operations and common global customers, as well as corporate and administrative services.
The Company's 40,000 employees - more than half of whom work outside the United States - embody the Cummins' philosophy of diversity. They operate across cultures, functions, language barriers and time zones to solve the technical and logistical challenges created by a worldwide customer base.
They differ in age, gender, race, nationality and language, as well as in personality, behavior, sexual orientation and religious beliefs. They have varying skills and abilities, including education, experience and functional capability. Their diversity reflects the countries and communities where they live and work, as well as the customers and constituencies they serve.
The Company's vision is to make people's lives better by unleashing the power of this diverse workforce. The Cummins' mission directs employees to partner with customers to provide innovative products and services that meet customer expectations and help them succeed ... to demand that all of the Company's activities lead to a cleaner, healthier and safer environment ... and to create wealth for all stakeholders.
The Company's goals are further defined by the six strategic principles established since the year 2000. Those include the following:
- Leverage complementary businesses
- Increase shareholder value
- Become the low cost producer
- Lead in critical technologies
- Seek profitable growth
- Create the right work environment
Our vision is to make people's lives better by unleashing the power of Cummins through our products and services, but more importantly through our employees' ideas and energy. Our mission is to motivate employees to act like owners, to exceed customers' expectations and partner with them to ensure their success, to demand that all of our activities lead to a cleaner, healthier and safer environment and finally, to create wealth for all our stakeholders.
Employees around the world also operate within a code of conduct that demonstrates the following core values:
- Integrity - Strive to do what is right and do what we say we will do.
- Innovation - Apply the creative ingenuity necessary to make us better, faster, first.
- Delivering Superior Results- Exceed expectations, consistently
- Corporate Responsibility - Serve and improve the communities in which we live.
- Diversity - Embrace the diverse perspectives of all people and honor with both dignity and respect.
- Global involvement - Seek a world view and act without boundaries.
The vision, mission and core values provide Cummins with the solid foundation needed to build its future. These guiding principles define who we are and what we want to be.
Companies cannot succeed without the full commitment of their employees, and employees have a need to know where they are heading so they can contribute to the journey.
Diversity at Cummins
"...if a plot of ground be sown with one species of grass, and a similar plot be sown with several distinct genera of grasses, a greater number of plants and dry herbage can be raised in the latter than in the former case" "...the truth of the principle that the greatest amount of life can be supported by the great diversification of life, is seen under many natural circumstances."
- Charles Darwin, The Origin of the Species (1859)
As Cummins reaches out to attract and retain global customers, the Company acknowledges that a diverse workforce is essential to its continued success. How then does Cummins define diversity within the corporation?
- On a personal level, the diversity of an individual is defined by his or her cultural and personal differences, as well as life and professional experiences.
- At the organization level, diversity is created through the distinct personalities and capabilities of each individual within the group.
- Taken together, the diversity of individuals and organizations creates an environment where innovation and ideas flourish.
When Cummins' businesses enter new markets and geographies, it employs people who understand the local culture and speak the local language --- people who share the Company's values, and in most instances, who are an integral part of the local community.
A successful work environment not only includes people from different backgrounds, it also welcomes and celebrates their differences.
To derive the greatest benefit from diversity, Cummins believes it must do the following:
- Create a workplace population with representation that is similar to the markets in which it operates.
- Demand that the workplace is safe and inclusive for all individuals and organizations.
- Develop a collective behavior that encourages all individuals and employees to best use their talents.
- Capitalize on a diverse workforce to enhance the Company's competitive position in the marketplace.
Influencing Factors and Challenges
Five major factors have the potential to significantly affect Cummins and the way it does business now and in the future. They include:
- Globalization - Cummins has worldwide operations, including technical centers, manufacturing operations and distribution networks. These far-reaching business connections provide the Company with numerous opportunities for low-cost sourcing, talent recruitment and profitable growth in new markets. At the same time, operating in a global environment subjects the Company to greater potential risks, ranging from political, economic and ethical issues to manufacturing, market and people-management. To deal with these challenges, Cummins must employ a workforce that understands complex issues at local levels and can operate successfully within the Company's value system.
- Increasing customer expectations - Large global customers have more leverage to demand innovative products and business solutions at the lowest cost. Delivering solutions that delight customers with superior performance requires Cummins to have a worldwide network of highly skilled people.
- Increasing Regulation - Regulations provide both a business opportunity and a challenge for Cummins. For example, the implementation of stricter global emission standards and new requirements on fuel economy are business opportunities for the Company's leading technology. Conversely, laws that affect operational issues such as financial reporting, manufacturing emissions and safety, require teams that can understand and deal with complex regulations around the world.
- Changing Demographics - Immigration, emigration, changing global norms, aging populations and generational differences, coupled with varying birthrates, are driving greater complexity in all regions. Successful companies understand how demographics can affect their markets and how to effectively leverage diversity to create value by attracting and retaining the best talent.
- The Move Toward Sustainability - Corporations have come to understand that operating with an eye toward sustainability is vital to the society and our environment. A sustainable approach also nourishes a company - enabling growth today and in the future. This holistic attitude toward doing business requires a company, with its employees, to examine every aspect of its footprint - from product development to manufacturing practices and facilities operations. The value of a sustainable approach is recognized by Cummins many constituents, especially investors.
Our worldwide operations must ensure full compliance to strict environmental standards that require the tracking of consumption and waste streams, compliance to complex government reporting and continuous improvement efforts to minimize environmental impact.
New financial and government regulation requires that we track our worldwide assets and cash flows with unprecedented accuracy and report to shareholders in the most transparent way. Doing this successfully requires solving complex issues quickly, routinely and with global teams.
The Competitive Advantage of Diversity
"Character, ability and intelligence are not concentrated in one sex over the other, nor in persons with certain accents, or in certain races, or in persons holding degrees from some universities over others. When we indulge ourselves in such irrational prejudices, we damage ourselves most of all and ultimately assure ourselves of failure in competition with those more open andless biased."
- J. Irwin Miller, former Cummins Chairman and CEO
Mr. Miller's words, spoken over 20 years ago when he was chairman of the Cummins Executive Committee, identify the reasons why it is critical for Cummins to recruit talented employees from a diverse pool of candidates in every region and culture where the Company operates. Diversity provides Cummins with a competitive advantage in the following areas:
- Attract and retain the best talent
- Create an inclusive work environment that fosters innovation
- Promote differing viewpoints to enhance problem solving and decision-making
- Develop a positive reputation in its communities
- Create an inclusive and safe environment
Exceeding customer requirements - Global OEMs benefit from the innovative products and services Cummins provides through its worldwide operations and diversified workforce. The Company is better able to meet and exceed the needs of the marketplace because it has manufacturing facilities, technical, distribution and service centers along with low-cost sourcing opportunities close to where its customers do business.
Nearly all world growth in the future is projected to occur in Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe, the Middle East and Latin America. Cummins understands that the best way to grow into new businesses and more geographic regions is to have employees and organizations that understand the local culture or are part of it.
Innovation - Cummins relies on key insights from its diverse workforce to help solve complex engineering and business problems; to help reduce costs; and to help create differentiated products and services that enable the Company to delight its customers.
A greater number of innovative ideas and solutions are created from a group of people with different perspectives and backgrounds than from a homogeneous group whose members might basically act and think alike.
Doing the right thing - A company is only as healthy as the environment and communities in which its employees live and work. It is in Cummins self-interest, not selfish interest, to create an environment in which people treat others as they want to be treated. An environment in which diversity is celebrated creates a culture that is aligned with Cummins core values and enables the company to flourish.