AN INTERVIEW WITH CYNTHIA PATTON, SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT AND CHIEF COMPLIANCE OFFICER
Why was it critical for your organization to be involved in the Gender Parity Collaborative?
It’s no secret that women have faced greater barriers in securing leadership opportunities in business, including in our industry of healthcare. I’m proud of Amgen’s commitment to our Diversity, Inclusion and Belonging company priorities, which ties nicely with the important work of the Collaborative. We have already begun to introduce our collaborative initiatives into Amgen’s Diversity, Inclusion and Belonging priorities.
As one of your organization’s leaders, why are you personally committed to advancing gender parity in the workplace?
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. said, “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘what are you doing for others?”’ It’s one of my favorite quotes and a constant reminder of my commitment to the development, mentorship and sponsorship of Amgen’s talent pipeline, especially women. As an African American woman, it’s important to me to utilize leadership opportunities to prioritize our agenda around women of color, who far too often receive unbalanced representation in decision-making which leads to uneven opportunities for advancement. I’ve made it my personal mission to support building a community of leaders at Amgen who are equally driven to change the narrative and ensure gender parity is an expectation.
Why has it been necessary to create the Collaborative—this first ever industry consortium?
The consortium’s bold and progressive agenda emulates my personal mission. Working with other healthcare executive-level thought leaders to strategize, prioritize and execute is a rewarding experience that will benefit the whole industry. Women bring different perspectives, experiences and approaches to business, resulting in a diverse workplace and better company performance. The Collaborative is using transformative data to surface the significant gaps of women in leadership in the healthcare industry coupled with a rigorous agenda to blaze the trail for change.
What makes this consortium unique compared to other initiatives/investments happening in your own organization?
Advancing women in leadership requires a broader spectrum of stakeholders and allies to drive change. The uniqueness of the consortium is that mission driven healthcare senior leaders are strategizing opportunities for advancement and setting the priorities that encompass more than just one healthcare company. Equally important, the consortium’s purposeful concentration on creating meaningful and sustainable business results by driving gender diversity, compensation equity and recognition, arms leaders with information that can be taken back and executed upon by individual organizations.
How has your company benefited from the Collaborative discussion forums with like-minded industry peers?
We’ve benefited with a unique opportunity to co-create with like-minded industry peers, and advance conversations that align and mobilize leaders, key influencers, and decision makers. Specifically, at Amgen, we are working on engaging men as allies, one of the Collaborative’s priorities, including with male senior leadership who have now created functional priorities around our Diversity, Inclusion and Belonging efforts.
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