An anonymous survey completed by some Nike employees has revealed uncomfortable, unfair and even sexist behavior at the brand’s Beaverton, Oregon headquarters, according to an in-depth article by The New York Times. The results of this survey later landed on the desk of Nike CEO Mark Parker, prompting some major changes inside the company.
A number of high-level executives have departed from Nike following the internal survey, while some employees of the brand are skeptical of its human resources department. The New York Times reveals they interviewed more than 50 current and former employees for the article, which details that “at least six top male executives left or said they were planning to leave the company.” This includes “Trevor Edwards, president of the Nike brand, who was widely viewed as a leading candidate to succeed Mr. Parker, and Jayme Martin, Mr. Edwards’s lieutenant, who oversaw much of Nike’s global business.”
Personal testimonies from the article include feedback from Francesca Krane, who stated “I came to the realization that I, as a female, would not grow in that company.” One employee said that her Nike boss threw his car keys at her and called her a “stupid bitch.” Former employees said they were discluded from working in crucial divisions of the company like basketball.
Responding to the allegations, Nike spokesperson KeJuan Wilkins plainly said: “That is not something we are going to tolerate.” Nike, the biggest sportswear brand in the world, will surely be looking to take steps to combat these behaviors, such as enlisting Kellie Leonard as the brand’s chief diversity and inclusion officer. In addition, spokesperson Mr. Wilkins said that Nike is focused “on attracting, developing and elevating both women and people of color throughout the organization.”
It is unclear whether CEO Mark Parker was aware of these issues within the company, or if information was purposefully kept from him.
Read the full piece here.
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Donate to Rape Crisis here (UK) or RAINN here (U.S.).