How leaders can tackle microaggressions in the workplace starting with #MyNameIs
News 8th July 2021 3 minutes read
“I love showing organisations that tangible change is possible. I believe in what we do.”
Introducing the newest addition to Green Park’s Diversity, Inclusion, Culture & Ethics consultancy, Molly Hugh.
Green Park were delighted to welcome Molly Hugh to the business, back at the start of 2021. Joining the DICE (Diversity, Inclusion, Culture & Ethics) team as a Consultant, Molly brings in depth experience and passion to the diversity and inclusion field: “It’s empowering to be part of positive change, working with people from all kinds of organisations,” she says.
“I love seeing that light-bulb moment when leaders realise what they need to do to produce tangible change.”
Molly’s interest in diversity and inclusion grew out of a Master’s degree in Gender Studies, for which she earned a Distinction. “The first few weeks really opened my eyes,” says Molly, “I learned a lot about my own privileges and also white-centric ways of seeing the world.” This realisation set Molly on course for a career that has been defined by her drive for greater equality. Following her Masters, Molly joined an international charity dedicated to supporting women and children in Africa. From there, she moved to a diversity-focused recruitment agency, building skills that are now part of her work every day.
“I work within a data analytics team, helping organisations identify areas for improvement and making recommendations. We then help them implement EDI (Equality, Diversity and Inclusion) initiatives so they can reach their objectives.”
Molly has found herself working across all sectors, from NGOs and the NHS to private sector businesses, including major retail names. However, she warns against taking a ‘cookie cutter’ approach and says bespoke solutions are essential.
“Every project is tailored to a client’s specific needs. We use a range of diagnostic tools, assess policies and speak to employees to spot each organisation’s EDI disconnects. But it’s not just about diagnosing problems. We always highlight the good and the bad with a focus on solutions for improvement.”
Since the resurgence of the Black Lives Matter and #MeToo movements, more organisations than ever are focusing on EDI and making sure the workplace embraces all. For Molly, the growing demand for EDI expertise is a welcome development and she hopes it’s not just a passing trend. In her eyes, perhaps the biggest challenge is making organisations understand that they must take an intersectional approach. “They need to focus on all protected characteristics and look at all strands of diversity,” she explains. So, what other advice does Molly have for industry leaders?
“Be data savvy, and always get trust and buy-in from your employees. Many leaders are unaware of how their people feel, so listening is critical. At Green Park, through our not-for-profit Race Equality Matters we have developed solutions for organisations such as Safe Space, which provide a protective and open forum for employees to communicate with their leadership teams and have conversations that may otherwise seem uncomfortable. Forums such as these are also a highly effective way of boosting an individual’s cultural intelligence.”
As Green Park continues to grow, Molly says there are further exciting projects in the pipeline, including professional EDI films which will showcase and socialise what organisations are doing in the EDI space.
In the meantime, Molly is enjoying working at the forefront of her field with highly respected EDI experts Jo Heath and Corine Sheratte.
“Before joining the business, I’d been referencing insights from Green Park’s industry-leading diversity reports, so it’s great to be here and working with the team that is leading their field and helping to make an impact.”
Although more and more organisations are accepting that the workplace needs to change, Molly is well aware that EDI initiatives are often met with apathy and disillusionment. This negative view is perhaps no surprise – too many organisations have introduced ineffective, ill-fitting measures or treated EDI as a PR exercise. Faced with this challenge, Molly is determined to change attitudes, and the workplace too:
“I love breathing new life into the sector and showing organisations that tangible change is possible. I really believe in what we do.”
Find out more about Green Park’s DICE consultancy.