Since Brenda Marshall joined Kelly Services® nearly 20 years ago as national account manager, she has served in several leadership positions, including her current role as senior director of global diversity solutions. She is responsible for developing strategies, designing processes and building alliances that support the organization’s overall strategic direction for Diversity & Inclusion, as well as delivering innovative solutions for Kelly and clients.
An active member of several professional boards, including the Executive Advisory Board for the Center for Empowerment and Economic Development, Marshall currently serves as Chair of the Council of Supplier Diversity Professionals’ Board of Directors. She was recently named a “Supplier Diversity Champion” by MBN USA, one of WE USA’s “Top 100 Leaders,” and a “Diversity Business Leader” by Corp! magazine. However, when asked to name her most important accomplishment, she replies, “My greatest professional achievement is my ability to empower others to succeed.”
According to Marshall, in a world of supply and demand, diversity and inclusion are a valuable source of innovation and the key to personal, professional and organizational growth. “The one constant in business is change, and as the market continues to evolve, so does the face of diversity,” she explains. “What began as a compliance-driven activity has become a profit-motivated initiative in organizations that want to remain adaptive and innovative in a global economy. From employment opportunity to the procurement process, diversity creates a competitive advantage.”
Marshall believes there are more opportunities for women today, but there is also more competition. “To succeed, each woman must find her passion, set high standards, develop a strategy, seek out mentors, stay ready, and make no excuses,” she advises. “I believe there is greatness in everyone, and the first step to reaching your maximum potential is taking control of your career. Establish a clear and direct vision for your career and define your contribution to your company, your team and yourself. Choice, not chance, determines your future.”