June 1, 2021

Increasing Diversity and Cultivating Inclusion through Meaningful Partnerships

Kenya Jacobs

Kenya Jacobs, Director of Diversity and Inclusion

At Trane Technologies, we embrace differences and value the opinions and contributions of each person. We are building an inclusive and uplifting culture and creating opportunity for all.

Increasing diversity is a core part of our refreshed Diversity & Inclusion strategy. And, the benefits of increasing diversity and building a culture of inclusion are clear. According to recent research from Linkage, companies with inclusive cultures develop products more likely to appeal to a more diverse and global customer base. They also develop more innovative products, increasing revenue by almost 19%. And employees at inclusive companies are more engaged; people who are able to bring their whole selves to work are 42 percent less likely to say they intend to leave their job within a year.

To ensure we continue to recruit, hire and advance diverse talent, we partner with like-minded organizations committed to advocating for and helping advance the historically underrepresented.

Our partnerships are making it happen

Cultivating partnerships with organizations focused on diverse groups enables our company to expand where and how we recruit and hire talent. And, these partnerships allow for the acknowledgement of the unique and specific obstacles these groups face throughout their careers.

We have a long history with the Society of Women Engineers (SWE), the world’s largest advocate and catalyst for change for women in engineering and technology. Partnerships like this one enable our company to attract, hire and retain some amazing women engineers. As we look toward the future, these women will be integral members and leaders of our teams. Trane Technologies participates in SWE career fairs and regional and national conferences and presents workshops.

And, our work with the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE), aims to empower the Hispanic community to realize its fullest potential and impact the world through STEM awareness, access, support and development. In addition to career fairs with SHPE, Trane Technologies is participating in the Women of Color in Engineering Collaborative in partnership with SHPE, SWE and the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE). This network of organizations is committed to diversity, equity and inclusion, with a specific focus on increasing the retention of women of color in the engineering workforce.

The relationships run deep

We’ve been working with the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE) as a national sponsor for several years. We sponsor its annual convention and help fund NSBE, Jr. programming for K-12 students. We also leverage employee volunteers for the Summer Engineering Experience for Kids (SEEK) program, which moved to a virtual format in 2020, allowing even more children to attend in cities across the U.S.

“Our partnership with NSBE helps us further our diversity goals in meaningful ways and on several different levels,” said Kenya Jacobs, director of diversity and inclusion. “NSBE connects us with top Black engineering professionals for open positions in the U.S. and college students for our early talent programs. Through NSBE, Jr. chapters, the organization is cultivating the next generation of Black engineers by engaging elementary students around STEM.”

We’re making it personal

What’s more, some of our own people – and their successful careers – have been positively impacted by NSBE.

“I was introduced to the National Society of Black Engineers when I was attending Clemson University,” said Tyrone Ellis, aftermarket engineering leader. “There weren't many Black students, so being part of an engineering community that looked like me and came together to be supportive helped me be successful.”

Tyrone Ellis

Tyrone Ellis, aftermarket engineering leader in Trane Technologies’ Residential HVAC and Supply business

Tyrone is passionate about giving back and inspiring the next generation of Black engineers. At NSBE’s recent annual convention, he organized and participated in a panel discussion with other Trane Technologies leaders entitled Leading While Black. The convention, virtual for the second consecutive year, drew nearly 16,000 attendees – more than any other year. Soon Tyrone will address and inspire third through fifth grade students and their parents at this year’s SEEK program orientation.

“I’m excited about our opportunities to encourage underrepresented communities to pursue STEM career paths,” Tyrone said. “Our partnerships with organizations like NSBE are aligned with our vision around Sustainable Futures – our three-pillared citizenship strategy designed to help underrepresented communities. Our relationship with the Society of Women Engineers (SWE) is another great example of how we’re being intentional in this space.

“These meaningful partnerships are helping us actually make a difference in the world instead of just talking about it.”

These meaningful partnerships are helping us actually make a difference in the world instead of just talking about it.

Tyrone Ellis

Engaging children around STEM

Through our partnerships we are engaging children around STEM and gaining access to a diverse pool of qualified candidates for technical positions and early career paths at Trane Technologies.

“We bring our resources and volunteers to the organizations to help grow their programs and expand their reach,” Kenya said. “And in return, our own people are benefitting from opportunities to mentor young people, give back to future generations and receive support from the organizations we partner with.

“We’re helping Trane Technologies become even more diverse and more inclusive while making a positive impact on the world. I can’t think of anything more important in today’s climate.”

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