About Us Purpose How Principal® puts a global inclusion strategy into action

How Principal® puts a global inclusion strategy into action

The Principal global inclusion strategy provides a framework to contribute to business growth.

Principal employee during a meeting at Principal global headquarters.
3 min read |

Business growth can be supported and measured in lots of ways—new customers or increased sales, to name just two. But in the 21st century, as connections across continents ease and the globe starts to feel smaller, the options to support growth have only become more expansive. 

Take inclusion: Employees value it. More than 80% of U.S. organizations have initiatives to support it. Companies with inclusive teams drive more innovation than those without.

At Principal® , inclusion is expected to support growth and offer opportunities for customers, communities, and businesses. How? A global inclusion strategy helps to define measurements and track progress.

Global inclusion purpose and goals

If you’re in business like Principal is to make financial security accessible to more people and businesses around the globe, an inclusive approach helps address needs, challenges, and roadblocks. The Principal inclusion strategy was developed in partnership with the Principal Executive Inclusion Council and insights from over 900 employees, former employees, customers, and financial professionals.

The inclusion strategy focuses on present-day ways to assist people, adapt and support business practices, and engage with communities, even while it leans into the long-standing Principal commitment to equitable practices and an inclusive culture. For example, the first person of color on the board of directors joined nearly 50 years ago; just one year later, the first female was added, too.

“Global inclusion is our north star,” says Miriam Lewis, chief diversity and inclusion officer at Principal. “Diversity, equity, and inclusion as well as innovation and business growth are some of our expected outcomes.”

Tracking inclusion progress

The global inclusion strategy doesn’t have a starting—or a stopping—point. Instead, it’s a multi-year guide to build on internal and external strengths and opportunities.

Internally, progress is tracked with metrics such as increased participation in a global mentoring program, a first-ever inclusion summit, the support of nine employee resource groups, and continuous improvement in a score measuring workforce diversity. Externally, the global inclusion strategy encourages sustainable sourcing and supplier diversity, as well as contributions to over 145 organizations through grants, employee match giving, sponsorships, and in-kind donations.

When it comes to setting strategy and reviewing progress toward inclusion, which in turn supports growth, third-party reviews can offer insight, too. In 2022, Principal:

  • was named to the Bloomberg Gender Equality Index,
  • earned a perfect score on the Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s Corporate Equality Index for the 7th consecutive year, and
  • was listed as one of America’s Best Employers for Diversity by Forbes.

What’s next? Continuous improvement—and hopefully more of what Principal has always been committed to.

“We know people around the world can be better positioned to feel financially secure if we help remove barriers and improve access to financial products and services,” says Dan Houston, chairman, president, and CEO of Principal. “Our longstanding commitment to diversity and inclusion has contributed to our success for more than 140 years—and is even more vital to our continued success.”