As the old adage goes: ‘diversity is being invited to the party and inclusion is being asked to dance’. We encourage our teams to join and lead employee resource group activities, and we give them the time, space and tools to work together to drive engagement around causes that are important to them. We ask managers to hold inclusion dialogues, train their teams to identify unconscious bias in themselves and expect all employees to become inclusion allies. Only when everyone feels included, do they belong, and when all 48,000 of our colleagues feel like they belong, that drives positive outcomes for all our stakeholders and for society as a whole.
We are on a journey and there is a significant way to go. There remain barriers to attracting diverse talent into an industry that may not be perceived as a viable career option in some communities. As an industry, we need to change that by improving representation and creating more diverse role models in finance and investments.
The events of 2020 have highlighted the discrimination and social injustice that we would like to think were a thing of the past but sadly still exists today. But at the start of 2021, I am optimistic about the transformative contribution the investments industry can make to society whilst strengthening themselves with the greater experience, creativity and resiliency that a diverse workforce can bring.
This article first appeared on OMFIF.org on Jan. 8, 2021.