Our recent event applied lessons learnt from bringing together international teams to the challenges of inclusion and diversity.
KPMG recently hosted a ‘Champions for Change’ breakfast, sponsored by Women in Aerospace, Defence & Technology, during the week of the 2019 Royal International Air Tattoo.
We were delighted to be joined by three talented women who are all passionate about inclusion and diversity – Anna Keeling, Managing Director of Boeing Defence UK; Gabby Costigan, CEO of BAE Systems Australia and Jackie Duncan, Operations Director of Microsoft UK Services.
We discussed a range of topics, from the importance of sponsors, to the role of technology in creating an inclusive workplace, to how personally helping to develop employees can lead to better retention rates and a happier workforce.
The panel felt particularly strongly about the importance of mentoring – not just female to female mentoring, but the need for including men in the discussion too. Indeed, the importance of everyone having a voice was felt widely – for example, ensuring new graduates are empowered to share their views right from day one.
Finally, another key topic raised was around flexible working and having open conversations with your employee. We learnt that it is not only about only finding the right role, but the right organisation, that fits with your own personal values.
Rachel Hugo, Partner at KPMG, who hosted the event, commented: “The talk addressed a whole host of new ways of thinking about inclusion and diversity, including how technology can be a crucial enabler when facing key challenges around inclusion. The forum created such an interesting discussion and set of questions. Bringing individuals from across the breadth and depth of the sector, and across the globe, proved an enlightening discussion with innovative ideas for the way we work every day.”
All in all, there was a real sense of strength in the room and optimism for the future. While we still have a long way to go, it is clear that inclusion and diversity is being bought further up the agenda of businesses today.
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