Skip to main content
Back to People & Culture
Culture April 10, 2024

Introducing “B”: How Bread Financial™ is expanding its DE&I strategy

By Jeff Hammonds

Jeff Hammonds

When I joined Bread Financial™, I was instantly impressed by the passion and commitment of our associates and leadership team to champion diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I) across the business. Together, we were able to quickly develop clear goals and strategies to advance our four DE&I focus areas: workforce, workplace, marketplace and community. We have since achieved measurable progress in each of these areas and reached a stage in our journey where we are ready to evolve our approach and set new standards for success. 

But before sharing where we are headed, it is important to recognize and understand the foundational elements of DE&I and the critical role each component plays for our company and stakeholders:  

  • Diversity is a noun. It is the representation of the different (and similar) identities, backgrounds, perspectives and experiences that make us who we are. It means we value and respect the differences that make each of us unique, such as race, ethnicity, gender, age, sexual orientation, disability, religion, education and more.  
  • Equity is a principle. It represents the fair and impartial treatment of all associates, ensuring everyone has equal access to opportunities, resources and benefits. It means we recognize and address the systemic barriers and biases that may prevent some groups from achieving their full potential, and we strive to create a level playing field for all. 
  • Inclusion is a verb. It is the intentional act of engaging, involving, appreciating and valuing diverse people to achieve a positive outcome. It means we foster a culture where everyone feels valued, heard, respected and supported, and one where everyone can contribute their talents and perspectives. 

And while critical to our success, DE&I on its own is not enough to create a truly thriving workplace. That is why we are focused on a fourth component to encompass and elevate the other three. Think of diversity, equity and inclusion as three unique pieces that together form a complete puzzle - a sense of belonging.  

Belonging is an outcome. It occurs when associates feel seen for their contributions, connected to their coworkers, supported in their daily lives, proud of their work and aligned to the organization’s values and purpose. It is a sense of safety and community, and the feeling of being able to bring your authentic self to work without fear of judgment, discrimination or isolation. 

Belonging is also a business imperative. Research shows that when associates feel a sense of belonging, they are more engaged, productive, innovative and loyal. They are also more likely to advocate for their company and its products and services. Belonging can also help us attract and retain diverse talent, strengthen our brand reputation and foster positive relationships with our customers and partners.  

Adding "B" to DE&I is not just a symbolic gesture, but a strategic decision that will guide our actions and initiatives in the coming months and years. Our DEIB strategy starts with transparent communication and a deliberate commitment to provide the education, resources and tools needed for adoption and accountability. I am immensely proud of our progress to date and excited for the next phase of our strategy as we further elevate what it means to be to be a purpose-driven financial services company.  

About Bread Financial™

Bread Financial™ (NYSE: BFH) is a tech-forward financial services company providing simple, personalized payment, lending and saving solutions. The company creates opportunities for its customers and partners through digitally enabled choices that offer ease, empowerment, financial flexibility and exceptional customer experiences. Driven by a digital-first approach, data insights and white-label technology, Bread Financial delivers growth for its partners through a comprehensive suite of payment solutions that includes private label and co-brand credit cards and Bread Pay™ buy now, pay later products. Bread Financial also offers direct-to-consumer products that give customers more access, choice and freedom through its branded Bread Cashback American Express® Credit Card and Bread Savings™ products.

Headquartered in Columbus, Ohio, Bread Financial is powered by its approximately 7,000+ global associates and is committed to sustainable business practices. To learn more about Bread Financial, visit or follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter/X and Instagram.


Jeff Hammonds

Vice President - Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging