Inclusion of diversity

  • Promoting diversity is part of our company culture

The strong global character of our markets translates into different customer requirements – and we want to reflect this diversity in our workforce, too. For us, diversity is first and foremost about bringing together employees with different backgrounds who can draw on different perspectives to grow our business. At the same time, we want to better understand our customers’ expectations. Diversity also boosts our teams’ performance and power of innovation, and increases creativity, motivation and identification with the company. Promoting diversity is an integral part of our corporate culture and as such, it is also anchored in the global Competency Model as one of the behaviors expected of employees and leaders. This is how we promote the appreciation and inclusion of diversity. Leaders play an important role in its implementation. We support them by integrating topics such as inclusive leadership into our leadership development courses. Special seminars are held to sensitize leaders to the issue of unconscious bias. The aim is to help leaders remain as objective as possible when making personnel decisions, for example, to avoid unconscious biases in favor of or against candidates with certain characteristics or views.

2021 Goal


Proportion of women in leadership positions with disciplinary responsibility

Since 2015, BASF has set itself global quantitative goals for increasing the percentage of women in leadership positions. In the BASF Group, the global proportion of female leaders with disciplinary responsibility was 20.5% at the end of 2017 (2016: 19.8%). We aim to increase this ratio to 22–24% worldwide by 2021, so that the proportion of women in leadership positions reflects that of women in the global company workforce. Considering the relatively low rate of turnover in the BASF Group’s leadership team, this is an ambitious goal that we want to achieve through various measures. One example is the KarrierePlus program, which supports leaders and future leaders with young children in their professional development with mentoring, networking events and training. The mentors gain insights into successful models for flexible work and leadership. BASF has been a member of the Chefsache initiative since 2016, a network of leaders from industry, academia, the public sector and media. The initiative aims to initiate social change such as increasing the percentage of women in leadership positions in Germany. Furthermore, BASF wants to continue increasing the percentage of senior executives1 that come from countries other than Germany. This figure was at 38.9% at the end of 2017 (2016: 36.4%). Moreover, we intend to maintain the proportion of senior executives with international experience at over 80%. We exceeded this figure again in 2017, reaching 84.6%. With these goals, we continue to drive our globally integrated approach to promoting diversity and leadership development.

1 The term “senior executives” refers to leadership levels 1 to 4, whereby level 1 denotes the Board of Executive Directors. In addition, individual employees can attain senior executive status by virtue of special expertise.