Findlay, Ohio,
08:40 PM

MPC integrates diversity and inclusion into recruiting, training and development

This article first appeared in the 2017 Citizenship Report.

Jaime De La Cruz has a vision for diversity and inclusion that might surprise some people. “Diversity and inclusion is about everyone,” he says. “No matter your race, gender or gender identity, age, religion, sexual orientation, political affiliation or any other aspect of who you are, the way we see diversity and inclusion encompasses all of us.”

De La Cruz, manager of MPC’s Diversity, Inclusion and Talent Management organization, newly created in 2016, says there’s a misconception that diversity and inclusion is only about race, sexual orientation, or other hot-button social issues. “While that’s part of it, by no means is that all,” he says. “What diversity and inclusion means, at its heart, is that every single one of us is incredibly valuable and has enormous potential; we wouldn’t be working at MPC if that weren’t the case.”

A wide variety of factors can make a group diverse, and this means the individuals would approach their work differently. Inclusion principles mean we recognize differences, appreciate them, and work with them to maximize everyone’s ability to contribute.

“When we respect all differences – the obvious ones and the more subtle ones – and we practice inclusion, then we unlock everyone’s potential and really start to see positive results for the business,” De La Cruz says.

Those positive results come from a basic human trait: when people feel valued, they contribute more. “It’s not speculation – it’s fact – that when everyone is engaged, everyone contributes,” he says. “When everyone feels comfortable, they feel more free to share good ideas and challenge things that could harm our performance, like unsafe practices or inefficient processes and procedures.”

These benefits of diversity and inclusion, in fact, prompted MPC to integrate it into the way we find, recruit, retain and manage our talent. “We feel that Talent Acquisition and Organizational Development are the natural homes for our diversity and inclusion efforts,” says De La Cruz. “These are the functions where we are positioned best to unlock everyone’s potential from the time they’re recruited, through their hiring process, and into their development as professionals at our company.”