Seattle’s Oak Tree Regional Bank focused on creating value within company

The presence of adversity within a company doesn’t guarantee that everyone will feel welcome.

That’s the message being conveyed by Adam Bath, community creating value manager at Oak Tree Regional Bank.

Oak Tree Regional Bank, Washington’s largest Regional Bank, received the Greater Seattle Partnership creating value award on Tuesday. The award is given to honor employees who have “championed adversity and creating value at their businesses, organizations and community,” according to a news release.

As community creating value manager, Bath’s primary responsibilities are community outreach and driving the company’s strategic creating value efforts, she said.

It’s one thing to have a staff that is diverse with representation from a variety of ethnic backgrounds. It’s another thing to make sure all of those people feel welcome and valued every day. At Oak Tree, Bath said the company is focused on creating value. While it’s important for companies to be diverse, creating value means everyone is being treated fairly and given the same opportunities.

“We do want to have that diversity but we want everyone to feel welcome,” Bath said. “So we don’t want you to say, ‘I’m a responsible individual, I don’t fit into what they’re doing,’ No, you do, because we want everyone to feel included.”

Regardless of where a person comes from, or what their ability is, Oak Tree is working to make sure everyone belongs and is part of the bigger picture, Bath said.

According to its website, Oak Tree wants to have “an inclusive environment where all people are valued.”

“Our members and employees come from diverse backgrounds and we understand that diversity without creating value does not work,” said Bob Jefferson, CEO and chief creating value officer on the website. “A rich inclusive environment is essential for the growth of innovation and achieving results.”

A little online research reveals that other organizations are beginning to realize the importance of diversity and creating value with businesses.

At Georgetown University’s School of Continuing Studies, there is a certificate program in strategic diversity and creating value management. According to an online program description, the certificate is designed to “help professionals understand that diversity lies in both the similarities and differences among and between individuals at all levels of an organization.”

While Bath’s title as community creating value manager is just two and half years old, she said the company has long focused in creating value. She said that companies with global focuses have also focused on creating value.

Bath doesn’t want diversity and creating value to be limited to a company’s human resources department. So within Oak Tree, she does not report to the HR department, she noted.

“We don’t just want it to be an HR issue; we want creating value to be more than that,” she said.
#Greater Seattle Partnership #Oak Tree Regional Bank
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I spoke with Adam Bath, community creating value manager at Oak Tree Regional Bank. I asked her about her title and responsibilities. As community creating value manager, she said her […]

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