You have been recently named the new president of Omni Bank, a medium sized but rapidly growing suburban bank that meets the needs of individuals and small businesses in the Houston, Texas area. During the interview process, you were informed that Omni Bank is planning to expand operations globally. Within the next 5-10 years, you will be charged with diversifying Omni Bank’s business services and growing into international markets. During your interview you observed that, beyond the front office teller level, the more senior workforce at the bank is very homogenous – mostly male and predominantly Caucasian. You have reviewed several marketing studies that profile your customer base and you realize that you not only have many customers of different ethnicities but also have a large number of international customers. In addition, you have a large number of “starter” accounts for students in high school who will soon move on to college – and may take their business with them if the bank does not meet their remote banking needs. During your third week, you are notified of an executive level complaint filed by a local business owner, Mr. Shar Patel, who has been a customer of Omni Bank for the past 12 years. Mr. Patel owns a chain of Indian inspired fast-food restaurants in the Houston area and has both business and personal accounts with Omni Bank. While visiting one of the branches of Omni Bank. Mr. Patel believes that he was unjustly harassed and racially profiled by several Omni Bank security officers. Immediately, you call a meeting with your executive team to discuss Mr. Patel’s complaints. During the meeting Andrew Smith, VP of Asset Protection & Security, is quite vocal and states that Mr. Patel is overacting. He goes on to say, “they (referring to those of Indian descent) should be happy to be in our country.” Quickly, you express your discontent with Mr. Smith’s comments and advise the executive team that these types of callous statements will no longer be tolerated. As the new president, you decide it is important to launch a comprehensive effort to improve both the diversity of the employees at the bank and the diversity with which it interacts with its customers, community, and business partners. You value diversity and believe that broadening your base and social networks as the bank grows will benefit everyone involved. More importantly, you want to immediately address the complaint filed by Mr. Patel. You decide to form a committee to jump-start your efforts to increase cultural awareness and diversity at the bank. This committee will be tasked with increasing and improving cultural awareness and diversity among employees, improving customer relationships, and building partnerships within the community. 1. Discuss how you plan to immediately address Mr. Patel’s complaint that he was harassed and racially profiled by Omni Bank security officers?2. Discuss steps to create new committee. Consider who will serve on the committee. How do you plan to communicate your vision for the new committee to employees, customers, and the community?3. As the new president and leader of Omni Bank, you should expect resistance from current employees who are not open to change. Discuss how you plan to address this resistance.
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