Nike CEO Mark Parker Apologizes for Toxic Corporate Culture

“Throughout all of this change, we — and I — missed something.”

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Fashion
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As Nike continues to find itself surrounded in controversy for its workplace culture, CEO Mark Parker has just released a formal apology to employees after months of turmoil.

According to The Wall Street Journal, Parker apologized to employees during an all-staff meeting held at the Tiger Woods Conference Center, for allowing a workplace culture where many felt excluded. Parker also apologized for those who felt their complaints weren’t being taken care of seriously.

During the meeting, Parker told the packed theater that this has been “a painful moment” for him. He continued to share how recently an employee told him they didn’t feel like they fit the Nike profile and that this hurt him considering “there is no Nike profile.” “Throughout all of this change, we — and I — missed something,” Parker stated, according to a transcript of his prepared remarks. “While many of us feel like we’re treated with respect at Nike, that wasn’t the case in all teams. And if all of our teammates don’t see the same opportunities, we just can’t accept that.”

Parker continued by outlining the next steps Nike will take in order to combat its recent negative behaviour including that every voice is heard, not just the loudest. He then asked his staff to “support each other, be energetic, engaged, constructive and passionate, yet respectful, open and humble.” “Let’s move towards that future,” Parker said. “I’m in 100 (percent), and I’m counting on you to be all-in too.”

Over the last couple of months, several executives have left Nike due to internal complaints of inappropriate behavior including once Nike President Trevor Edwards, Vikrant Singh, North America senior brand director for Nike Basketball, and Daniel Tawiah, vice president of global brand digital marketing innovation. The women at Nike have also revealed they felt “ignored, harassed and stymied in their careers.”

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