HR Zone | Autism in the workplace: Why recognising intersectionality is so important
Blogs 7th August 2019 3 minutes read
As we count down to the launch of Green Park’s 2019 #BAME100 Business Leaders on the 11th of September at Somerset House, we’re catching up with some of the stand-out figures from 2018’s #BAME100 list, including Dr. Kamel Hothi OBE. In this, her second short film, Kamel shares fresh insight into her work as a non-executive director of TLC Lions, an exciting and rapidly expanding organization created to inspire change in the workplace.
Dr. Hothi & TLC Lions
TLC Lions is a collection of motivational speakers who share their inspiring stories to help organisations improve employee engagement and well-being. Since its inception little over a year ago, TLC Lions has thrived, amassing over 65 clients in the UK and globally. As a non-executive director, Dr. Hothi has been focusing particularly on Diversity & Inclusion and how TLC Lions can influence organisations.
“I’m looking at culture and Diversity & Inclusion through emotional engagement. I tap the top – the CEOs and Chairmen – to see how they can really understand diversity.”
Why inclusion matters
For Dr. Hothi, the issue we’re tackling now is inclusion. She makes a strong case for an open, welcoming workplace and believes the benefits include a more engaged and dedicated workforce:
“If you treat everyone equally, regardless of the colour of their skin, regardless of their culture, religion, background and sexual orientation, and let them be themselves at work, it will increase their confidence straight away. That’s because they think ‘I’m not being judged because of my voice or the fact I dress differently to you or because I have my hair a certain way because of my culture, or because I celebrate Eid or Diwali.’ They think ‘Because you allow me to be myself at work, I’m more committed to you.’”
In the video, shot exclusively for Green Park, Dr. Hothi speaks to a new TLC Lion, Anusha Nirmalananthan who has worked in the tech industry for over 10 years between the UK and San Francisco and is Head of Growth Data & AI at Just Eat and the former Head of Product at eBay. A Londoner with Sri Lankan parents, Anusha’s journey to a senior tech position is exactly the kind of authentic story that can inspire others and shift deeply ingrained mindsets. By drawing on her passion for science and computing, she overcame obstacle to do a job she loves at a highly successful internet business.
The TLC Lions' success story
Dr. Hothi’s influence is in no small part responsible for TLC Lions’ rapid growth. Founder & CEO, Gian Power is grateful and recognises the tremendous impact Dr. Hothi has had on his work. Gian says TLC Lions has gone from having a very small audience to reaching 20,000 people, and is looking forward to progressing further with Dr. Hothi’s advice, expertise and support.
With the help of outstanding BAME leaders such as Dr. Hothi and rising stars, Gian Power and Anusha Nirmalananthan - Green Park will continue to move the dial on diversityand inclusion. For deeper insight into Dr. Hothi’s work, watch our video.
Dr Kamel Hothi OBE has been breaking glass ceilings in the banking world for over four decades from cashier to director, strategist and architect of numerous programmes and initiatives that have changed the shape of the banking industry.
She has led programmes such as the Lloyds Bank 250th anniversary, Asian Markets, skills volunteering across 85,000 colleagues. She now acts as Trustee & Advisor to Alzheimer’s Society, Teenage Cancer Trust and the Queens Commonwealth Trust. As well as a Non-Exec Director for two businesses including TLC Lions, Kamel is passionate about welcoming a new style of kind and inclusive leadership in organisations and having this impact nationally and internationally. Her passion for inclusion and diversity resulted in forming one of the first Women’s and BAME networks and chairing the government’s task force for supplier diversity ahead of the Olympic 2012 pitch. Her views on cultural inclusion and wellbeing have influenced many to follow.