Isaac's global perspective drives a global impact at Cummins
Isaac Dankwah’s first Indiana winter was a rude awakening. Growing up in Ghana, Isaac never had to stock his closet with jackets and coats. But after coming to the U.S. to attend college at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana, he was met with one of the most brutal winters in the 21st century.
“Of course I first came to Indiana at the beginning of 2014, which happened to be one of the coldest winters in recent history,” Isaac said. “It was a huge shock for me at first! In addition to the weather, it was my first time being away from family.”
Considering he’s still in Indiana, there must be something about the Hoosier state that’s worth sticking around for. For Isaac, it’s his career in finance at Cummins. During his junior year at Purdue, Isaac took an internship with Cummins, grateful to find a successful company that aligned with his interests and welcomed international students. And the rest is history — well, recent history.
Upon graduation in 2018, Isaac entered Cummins’ finance rotational program, where he completed four six-month rotations with various teams across the U.S., honing his accounting skills and finding his way to his current role as a corporate credit analyst in the treasury function at Cummins.
“Coming out of college, I knew I loved studying finance,” Isaac said. “What you do at work, though, isn’t always what you learned in the classroom.
I didn’t know what a career in accounting would be like, but I thought the rotational program at Cummins would be a great way to figure it out. I got a taste of what I liked and what wasn’t for me.
Through the rotational program, Isaac gained experience in plant finance, where he developed an understanding of how manufacturing plants operate financially, interacting with operations to report on plant productivity. While he learned a lot, Isaac came to realize he wanted to take on larger-scale projects across the company.
“At the plant, I was working within the walls of that individual plant,” Isaac said. “I found that I wanted to work on a larger scope and have a bigger impact on the company as a whole, interacting with more business units and teams.”
Now, Isaac works with a more global view of the business and a larger scope of operations, managing accounts receivable with credit reporting, credit management and policy management on the corporate level across all business units.
Isaac’s ambition and knack for business started early. Growing up, he spent his school breaks working in the office of his parents’ manufacturing company in Ghana, helping out the company’s sales team starting at just 13 years old. It was there that he began to understand supply and demand and take an interest in finance and global business operations. With family still in Ghana, and friends from college across the world, he maintains a global worldview in his everyday life with an appreciation for other cultures.
“Being born and raised outside of the U.S., diversity and inclusion are very important to me,” Isaac said. “I wanted to build my career somewhere that I would fit in and not feel like an outsider.
At Cummins, our differences aren’t just tolerated, they’re appreciated and celebrated.
Cummins takes diversity and inclusion beyond buzzwords and corporate mission statements. Celebrating diversity is integral to our company culture, and Cummins employees live these values day in and day out, even — and especially — when it may be controversial to do so.
“Cummins has been outspoken and gone against the status quo of other corporations’ statements on racial justice and equality lately,” Isaac said. “When the Black Lives Matter protests first started, I personally got a call from the CFO. He reached out just to ask me how I’m doing. That spoke volumes to me.
Most companies will talk about inclusion, but I have actually experienced it in my career at Cummins.
While Isaac’s home base is in Indiana, he interacts with coworkers from all across the globe and feels the support of thousands of fellow employees who know that our differences make us stronger. Cummins is a global company, and we believe in the power of diversity and our responsibility to be inclusive. In a work environment where all people feel welcome, innovation spreads like wildfire — even in the bitter cold of an Indiana winter.
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