Hear from Group HR Director Clare Martin as she explores the importance of diversity and inclusion at times of crisis.
There’s a number of news articles that have stuck out for me recently. The first has been the reports that the COVID-19 pandemic will set gender equality progress back by decades as women bear the brunt of extra childcare, housework and carer responsibilities.There’s also been for some people what may deemed as controversial reports, which shows that those countries with female leaders have handled their response to the pandemic more effectively.
With June being Pride month, it’s important that we remind ourselves the benefits of an inclusive culture have been clear for some time and don’t change just because of a crisis.Research has repeatedly shown that inclusion and performance go hand in hand. The latest report from McKinsey & Co Diversity wins: How inclusion matters, reinforces the business case.
So, what can be done to ensure businesses don’t lose traction on any progress made or indeed use this moment in time to define a more inclusive culture that enables all talent to shine?
Another benefit of using technology such as Microsoft Teams for meetings is that we’ve been able to broaden and diversify the group of colleagues involved in conversations. Before we were restricted by travel times, diary availability etc, but now we can simply gather people together, have a discussion, make decisions and work more agile, having had a diverse-rich conversation.
As a business, we had already started to adopt Microsoft Teams as a way to collaborate and communicate, but once in lockdown and forced to isolate, Teams became a stable part of daily routine and not just for meetings. A quick phone call to a colleague has been replaced with a casual Teams video call as we craved the facetime with others as a way to stay connected and it’s definitely brought us closer together. Long may it continue.
There are many positives we will take from the way we’ve operated through the COVID-19 crisis to make further progress in our diversification and inclusion strategy #WeAreJMG.While Pride month has had to go online this year with Pride Inside due to social distancing, we remain committed to working with our partners Stonewall and our colleagues through our JMG United network, to ensure we continue to make our business welcome to all talent.