Planning for the New World: A Q&A with Mark Atkinson
27th September 2019 2 minutes read
Every year, I’m proud to see our list of 100 BAME leaders. Not only is it a list of some of the most talented executives in the UK, this is a list of role models whose achievements are paving the way for future BAME talent to thrive.
As a Partner in Green Park’s Diversity, Inclusion, Culture & Ethics Consultancy Practice, my team addresses, on a daily basis, the barriers and ceilings that prevent senior diverse talent to progress in business and to achieve the top positions that they both strive for and deserve. Our diagnostic work highlights these challenges through a series of robust metrics - through differences in employee experiences to disproportionality in rates of progression.
Our team then work with organisations to address the issues identified, establishing bespoke and sustainable solutions. These solutions touch the entire workforce and improve the working experience and opportunities for all underrepresented groups of the population. We assist all businesses and individuals to recognise the importance of diverse talent and why they should be taking a seat at the very top of our business. This is why the BAME 100 list is so important.
This isn’t just a case of ensuring that talented individuals excel, regardless of their skin colour - it’s about changing the face of leadership to inspire others, it’s about having visible role models, having diverse opinions and decision makers and, ultimately making organisations more successful. These BAME leaders widen a board’s perspective, making it more relevant and insightful. And when boards understand their teams and customers, there’s more chance that they’ll create the products and services that people really need and want.
The UK is more diverse and multicultural than it’s ever been, so it makes both moral and business sense for its organisations to be also. Our consultants’ contributions to studies such as ‘The True Value of Diversity’ underline the compelling business case for embracing diversity & inclusion and how it can drive business growth.
With this in mind, diversity in leadership isn’t simply an option for organisations – it’s essential. Those that ignore today’s demography risk blinkered perspectives, missed opportunities and a drift into irrelevancy.
And without these role models and a supportive and inclusive environment, we risk missing out on tomorrow’s BAME leaders.