Apple shareholders again reject proposal to diversify senior management

Posted:
in General Discussion edited March 2017
For the second year in a row, Apple shareholders on Tuesday voted against a proposal that would force the company to actively recruit "people of color" to high-ranking management positions and its board of directors.




Touched on briefly during yesterday's shareholder meeting in Cupertino, the shareholder proposal sought to increase diversity among the company's upper echelons.

Apple requested shareholders reject the proposal on the grounds that its "holistic view of inclusion and diversity" generates opportunity for underrepresented minorities within the tech community. Shareholders apparently agreed, voting overwhelmingly to oppose the proposal, according to a Securities and Exchange Commission filing published Wednesday.

The final tally saw nearly 2.83 billion shares representing 95 percent of the vote cast against the diversity proposal. Only 146 million votes were cast in favor of its ratification, while 135 million abstained. Brokerage held shares, which do not have the power to vote on proxy proposals, were at 1.42 billion shares this year.

With the initiative only capturing 6 percent of the vote, Apple has grounds to block the inclusion of similar proposals in future proxy votes for three years.

Tony Maldonado and Zevin Asset Management, who first lodged the suggested action in 2015 and managed to persuade Apple to put it to vote last year, believe Apple's recommendation in opposition ultimately quashed its success.

"Apple basically duped the investors, to be quite honest," Maldonado said in an interview with The Verge. "They conned 'em to say, 'Look, we're on top of it. Don't worry about it. Everything's fine.' However, I believe that shareholders don't have all information as to the background of the issue."

For its part, Apple deems current efforts to diversify its workforce sufficient. As evidenced by the company's regular diversity reports, however, the initiative is slow going.

In its most recent EEO-1 report filed in November, 73 of Apple's top 107 executives and senior officials and management were white males. Perhaps more telling, Apple added one Hispanic or latino employee and two Asian members to its top ranks over the trailing 12-month period. The report noted only three black or African American executives.

Apple believes the required government statistics are inferior to its own internal metrics on diversity.

"The EEO-1 has not kept pace with changes in industry or the American workforce over the past half century," the company notes on a webpage dedicated to workplace diversity. "We believe the information we report elsewhere on this site is a far more accurate reflection of our progress toward diversity."

Moving forward, Maldonado is looking to work around the three-year proviso, perhaps by incorporating specifics about a comprehensive diversity plan. Whether or not he will be successful in finding a loophole is unclear. More importantly, Maldonado needs to reach the vast majority of shareholders who voted against the measure twice in as many years.

"For some strange reason, I would say that shareholders have the belief that by accepting this proposal, the company would be forced to establish reverse discrimination policies," he said. "We just have to probably expand on the campaign on educating all shareholders, including institution shareholders, that this is more beneficial and at the end of the long run it will help us to improve our bottom line."
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 40
    wood1208wood1208 Posts: 1,557member
    Leave Apple alone. Yes, I support diversity but not to hire or appoint someone just to justify diversity. If person is talented, Apple will hire and don't care if he/she/it is blue color ET from other planet.
    mattinozredraider11baconstanglolliverdarren mccoywaltgswedevbblastdoordamn_its_hotjony0
  • Reply 2 of 40
    mattinozmattinoz Posts: 896member
    wood1208 said:
    Leave Apple alone. Yes, I support diversity but not to hire or appoint someone just to justify diversity. If person is talented, Apple will hire and don't care if he/she/it is blue color ET from other planet.
    Exactly if they concentrate on making sure discrimination doesn't stop the best people getting employed. Make sure all employees get a chance to show where they shine. After that diversity in management should take care of itself sooner rather than later.
    baconstangwaltgjony0
  • Reply 3 of 40
    jdwjdw Posts: 632member
    I've been an AAPL shareholder since the 1990s and I always vote on the shareholder proposals.  In my experience, guidance provided by Apple management to voters prevails pretty much all of the time.  Few shareholders vote outside the advice of Apple, which is why this proposal was rejected.  With that said, I followed the advice of Apple and voted against that particular proposal because we need to vote for quality people to lead Apple, not voting in diversity for the sake of looking politically correct, trendy and cool. (By the way, there were two other proposals Apple management said to vote against but which I voted for; however, those proposals were rejected too.)
    waltgjony0
  • Reply 4 of 40
    jd_in_sbjd_in_sb Posts: 1,481member
    When a company considers skin color to be a top item on resumes, that's the beginning of the end of that company. 
    edited March 2017 SpamSandwichmagman1979waltgawilliams87tallest skiljony0
  • Reply 5 of 40
    anantksundaramanantksundaram Posts: 18,688member
    It's really time to stop with this "people of color* bullshit." So damn tiresome. If you're good, you're good; if you're not, you're not. 



    *from a person of color. 
    indyfxSpamSandwichmagman1979kamiltonrogifan_newwaltgdamn_its_hotcogitodexterjony0
  • Reply 6 of 40
    It's comical they help force the progressive agenda on the country and promote letting transgenders in the bathroom with little girls, but don't want the progressive agenda forced on themselves.
    [Deleted User]waltgawilliams87mobirdSpamSandwichtallest skil
  • Reply 7 of 40
    magman1979magman1979 Posts: 1,041member
    It's comical they help force the progressive agenda on the country and promote letting transgenders in the bathroom with little girls, but don't want the progressive agenda forced on themselves.
    That has NOTHING to do with a progressive agenda, my god... Like Anantksundaram said above, it's about hiring the right people, with the right talents, for the right job, FIRST! If Apple were to start putting people into positions of power within the chain of command simply to fill a quota for Hispanics, Blacks, Asian, the company would collapse so fast it'd make the melt down of Apple after the departure of Steve Jobs in the 80's look like a century's long boring soap opera!

    Your view of this matter is so short sighted, narrow, and ignorant, I can't even begin to put it into a coherent sentence...
    lolliverwaltganantksundaramdamn_its_hotjony0
  • Reply 8 of 40
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 4,201member
    It's comical they help force the progressive agenda on the country and promote letting transgenders in the bathroom with little girls, but don't want the progressive agenda forced on themselves.
    If a woman transitions into a man, do you want him sharing a bathroom with 'little girls'?

    cogitodexter
  • Reply 9 of 40
    dysamoriadysamoria Posts: 1,813member
    Just came here to see all the inevitable libertarian posts from people who think the status quo is just fine because they believe we live in a meritocracy.
    zoetmb
  • Reply 10 of 40
    evilutionevilution Posts: 1,313member
    Good! Companies should be employing the right person for the job. If you gave the job to someone not as good just because they were black, that'd be racist against whites (is that even a thing?).
    waltgSpamSandwichdamn_its_hot
  • Reply 11 of 40
    jungmarkjungmark Posts: 6,548member
    Maldonado Is an idiot. Apple should hired the best candidates regardless of race. They should look at diversity but shouldn't be forced. 
  • Reply 12 of 40
    DonvermoDonvermo Posts: 61member
    I'm glad Apple didn't pass this, positive discrimination is still discrimination, it doesn't fix the 'problem'. People in general should be judged on their merit and their merit alone, skin color or gender should have nothing to do with it in any shape or form. (unless the job specifically requires it such as in acting)
  • Reply 13 of 40
    bluefire1bluefire1 Posts: 816member
    Apple needs to continue hiring the best and the brightest regardless of skin color. 
  • Reply 14 of 40
    Anything that identifies people by their colour/race/sexuality etc. is backward imho. if 3 "whites" and a "hispanic" apply for a job and one of the whites is perfect in skills, attitude etc. Boss has to say, "sorry, we've got too many whites already", hispanic gets the job based on his/her ethnicity alone. I fail to comprehend how ANYONE can think that's as good idea.
  • Reply 15 of 40
    macguimacgui Posts: 892member
    A black guy, a white guy, and a yellow guy walk into Apple...

    HR: Let's see... You're all equally qualified, so I'll check our March Diversity Quota. Talk amongst yourselves."

    Seeking diversity (code for non-white guys) is a good thing if it means looking for the best and the brightest, and good fit for the organization in cultures not found in the stereotypical Old Boys Clubs etc. But at the end of the day the best and the brightest from all 'walks of life' still have to be the best and the brightest of all the candidates.

    If a company has an infrastructure to support recruiting and cultivating second-place candidates in addition to first-place hires and wants to do so, great.

    If not, sorry.
  • Reply 16 of 40
    waltgwaltg Posts: 75member
    The right person for the right job, it is that simple! Why try to screw up one of the greatest companies in the world by an old school idea that didn't work at all when it was first thought up and still doesn't work!! It seems to me that this person that keeps harping(2 years now?) on this is probably the bigot that he tries to make everyone else out to be...
  • Reply 17 of 40
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 4,577member
    I seriously doubt Apple cares what color, race, nationality, sexual orientation, etc, etc a person is when they're hired or not hired. If they feel you're the person for the job then you are, if you're not, then you're not and its not because you're not a white male that you didn't get the position. I get kinda sick and tired of this constant racism crap being brought up all the friggin' time! I firmly believe that if you prove yourself and Apple see's you are what they're looking for they'll hire you. 

    Now I know that Apple Retail is different from Apple Corporate, but if you look at Apple Retail, they hire all kinds of people, including ones that are disabled, or someone who has a defect, or even someone who has piercings, colored hair and tattoos galore! I think thats great! Let a person be who they are and as long as they're capable of performing their duties, then what does it matter. Corporate should be no different....
    edited March 2017
  • Reply 18 of 40
    joogabahjoogabah Posts: 108member
    Rayz2016 said:
    It's comical they help force the progressive agenda on the country and promote letting transgenders in the bathroom with little girls, but don't want the progressive agenda forced on themselves.
    If a woman transitions into a man, do you want him sharing a bathroom with 'little girls'?

    It is not possible to change one's sex, and bathrooms are sex segregated, not gender segregated, because of the biological possibility of rape and pregnancy. The men's room is not there to protect men from sexually aggressive women who, in any case, could not overpower and implant them with a human parasite. That is a very real, material vulnerability experienced exclusively by females and is the salient determinant in their classification, and the reason why provisions for them are ubiquitous and necessary.
    gocolts1818tallest skil
  • Reply 19 of 40
    leighrleighr Posts: 167member
    No company should be forced to hire people of any colour, white, black or anything inbetween. Companies should be allowed to hire the best person for the job, no matter what colour their skin is.
    edited March 2017 awilliams87
  • Reply 20 of 40
    It's comical they help force the progressive agenda on the country and promote letting transgenders in the bathroom with little girls, but don't want the progressive agenda forced on themselves.
    You're making a false comparison, and painting with too broad a brush ("progressive agenda"). Leaving aside my personal feelings on the transgender issue -- which I think is being blown all out of proportion -- the key aspect of what is being addressed there by the protagonists is access and equal opportunity. 

    If Apple is denying access or opportunity because of someone's skin color, that would be, of course, a huge problem. Not to mention, against the law. Are you seriously suggesting that is the case? C'mon. 
This discussion has been closed.