The past few weeks have shed a much needed light on centuries of privilege, ignorance, and inequalities inherent in our society. The tragic deaths of Black Americans at the hands of those meant to protect them must end, and we must put in our share of the work to ensure that no one else suffers the same fate.
Last week, our CEO Dan Lewis shared publicly his thoughts and position in a weekly video called “Dispatch.” Here’s part of that message:
As a small and growing company, we’ve asked ourselves what actions we need to take and what commitments for change we need to make. We believe change starts with listening.
Last week, the Convoy team spent several hours with hundreds of employees in small group discussions led by facilitators to create open, honest, conversations and hear the perspectives of our Black employees. Many of these were difficult conversations. We shared, we cried, we created better understanding and empathy, and most importantly we listened to one another. The discussions raised dozens of questions, many internal to Convoy, and others focused externally on the broader community and industry we operate in. We certainly don’t and won’t have all the answers. But we know that enough is enough, and our path forward requires a commitment to action and change.
We anticipate a number of actions to come from our listening sessions, many internally oriented, but to start we wanted to share three steps we are taking to support the broader community we operate in.
First, Convoy established an employee matching program to provide financial support to the organizations leading this movement including ACLU Foundation, Equal Justice Initiative, Black Lives Matter, and many others. These funds include donations from the Convoy leadership team as well as our employees.
Second, to support diversity amongst our carriers, for the next three months, Convoy is helping offset the cost for minority-owned carriers to receive their Minority Business Enterprise (MBE) certification. Certified carriers gain access to loads that businesses allocate specifically for diverse suppliers. The supplier diversity program at Convoy is specifically designed to increase opportunities for diverse carriers, and we hope that by helping to cover the certification cost, more diverse carriers will be able to take advantage of this opportunity to grow their business. Carriers can visit Convoy’s Supplier Diversity page or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Third, starting this month, we will launch a monthly content series produced by underrepresented Convoy employees with the support of their peers. This series will provide perspective into the challenges of people of color as well as the LGBTQIA+ community face in our industry and discuss how Convoy is delivering on our promise to listen and act together.
As a young company still shaping its identity, we must ensure that diversity, equity, and inclusion are part of our DNA as we grow and that every voice is represented. We’re not there yet. We know this requires a long-term, consistent commitment and holding ourselves and each other accountable along the way. Black@Convoy, an employee resource group, is being established to make sure Black employee voices continue to be heard and to help guide our work in this area.
At Convoy, a core value of the company is to “Bring Out the Best in Others.” Building an environment of openness, inclusion, and belonging is core to helping each other thrive and driving a culture where people feel safe to bring their whole selves to work each and every day. Systemic racial inequality has no place in our environment and demands our attention and action.
It’s time for change. Enough is enough.