Wells Fargo CEO Charlie Scharf told the truth and unintentionally exposed the root of the problem yesterday. Defending the abysmally small number of African-American employees at Wells Fargo (4.1%), Scharf said it was because of “a very limited talent pool.” To me that sounds like the lynch mob blaming its victim for not bringing a chair to stand on. Here’s a notion, Mr. Scharf: let Wells Fargo spend some of that fancy advertising budget deliberately mentoring persons of color and cultivate your own rich talent pool.
According to Business Insider mag: “Here’s a breakdown of Scharf’s salary package at Wells Fargo: $2.5 million base salary. $5 million target cash bonus. $15.5 million in equity. $26 million Wells Fargo stock, in lieu of awards he will forfeit for leaving his job at BNY Mellon.”
That cash bonus alone could fund Fifty $100,000 starter positions if they were serious about growing a talent pool.
Four percent is embarrassing, but information company Cisco has NO Black people on its executive leadership team. They have pledged to increase the number of Black persons in entry-level management positions to 25% within three years. The report I read did not divulge an amount of money budgeted for the effort. Announced goals not backed up by effort and money are smoke rings on a windy day.
Citi has budgeted over $1Billion dollars for initiatives to close the racial wealth gap. They will spend this money investing in Black-owned businesses, boosting credit access in communities of color, and helping increase Black homeownership.
And the one business/racial item you probably did hear: Mars (food company) is dropping its Uncle Ben label from its rice products. It will also retire the image. The brand will be renamed Ben’s Original.
Also yesterday, California Governor Gavin Newsom issued an executive order that would ban the sale of new gasoline-powered cars in the state by 2035. Here in the US, where the fossil fuel industry owns the federal government, this will be portrayed as catastrophic and unrealistic, but 15 nations have already passed similar laws. All the auto manufacturers have been working toward this for decades.
Ford Motor Company released a statement saying it’s “proud to stand with California,” noting it’s in the process of trying to “electrify our most iconic nameplates like the F-150 (pickup truck) and the Mustang Mach E.”
Also yesterday, Volkswagen announced its new all electric SUV for the U.S. market. The ID 4 costs just under $40,000