How Large Organizations Can Help Close the Skills Gap with PPG's Divya Thadani

Divya Thadani leads PPG’s strategy and business development for the company’s architectural coatings business in the US and Canada. But her impact doesn’t end there. She’s made her mark as a diversity, equality, and inclusion champion at PPG.

In this episode, Divya shares some insights from her childhood and how growing up in an entrepreneurial family influenced her life. She explains what she believes is causing the skill shortage gap in the manufacturing industry and how we can make these roles more accessible to underrepresented groups.

Divya sets the stage for how large organizations can help close the skill gap through the lens of PPG. She also gives some pointers on how individuals can foster positive organizational changes that transcend individual teams


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3 Quick Things from this Episode

  1. 4 million manufacturing jobs were lost in the U.S during the early days of the pandemic.
  2. Investing in underrepresented minorities is an integral part of driving diversity.
  3. The digital shift has changed the way people approach work.

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Tweetable Quotes

  • “The digital shift has enabled us to think very differently about the way we work, how we work, where we work from, which all ties into the DEI conversation.”
  • “Leadership teams need to think about constructive ways to drive cultural change while being intentional with how it permeates their business unit and the company as a whole.”
  • “Enabling underrepresented minorities — whether it’s income or ethnic diversity — involves educating people about the possibilities and giving them access.”

Please Scroll Down for Recommended Resources from this Episode

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What We Discuss with Divya

  • Divya’s experience coming from an entrepreneurial family
  • The most important lesson Divya learned from her parents’ business
  • Why Divya thinks a certain amount of naivety is bliss
  • How to make engineering roles more accessible to underrepresented groups
  • The forces driving the skill shortage of trade professionals
  • How organizations can have a direct impact on educational opportunities
  • Why it’s important to invest in educational opportunities for underrepresented groups
  • How PPG invests in the next generation
  • How to create positive cultural change beyond your organization
  • How the shift to digital impacts PPG’s diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts
  • Divya’s advice for young and upcoming professionals

Recommended Resources

  • PPG Industries: An American Fortune 500 company and global supplier of paints, coatings, and specialty materials.
  • PPG’s Sustainability Report: The company’s 2020 sustainability report strongly focused on its DE&I efforts.

Connect with Divya & PPG