Inclusion and Diversity
At MK, we’re a place where all people are welcome, yet we are still early into our Inclusion and Diversity journey (which I realise isn’t something to shout about but transparency is important!).
I had a read of this recent research by IGD called Inclusion in Food and Consumer Goods, which shows encouraging signs of change.
We’re driving social mobility with our community work, offering a lifeline to people and parents who are fighting hunger. The management team, along with our Mental Health First Aiders are helping to create an environment where it’s ok to not be ok. We’re also adapting our recruitment methods by partnering with Winter Night Shelter which will further help to improve social mobility.
We’re really good at tracking our environmental progress and are becoming better at tracking our community work. A goal we will be working on in 2021 is to put the framework in place to make sure we’re an intentionally inclusive workplace in terms of gender, disability, ethnicity, religion, age, social mobility, mental health. It’s fair to say this is still a traditionally male-dominated industry (although change is happening!)
Similar to climate change, this isn’t something you can ‘complete’ and for a lot of us approaching this subject feels difficult.
How do we ensure we’re perceived as genuine and not just box ticking?! How do we navigate the nuances sensitively?! How do we openly discuss stereotypes and misnomers without causing offence?! However, what I feel is critical is that we don’t scare ourselves and shy away from these subjects. Breaking down barriers and stereotypes, and celebrating “differences” should be encouraged.
I look at it from a sporting context, if a football team is made up of eleven fantastic centre forwards, their similarities will stifle them as a team, they won’t be a cohesive unit and won’t be successful. To be a great team, two fantastic centre forwards need to be complemented with nine other players with different skills and perspectives, only by pulling together all the different skills and perspectives will the team be successful. As leaders in the business community, we have a brilliant platform to help drive this change and I believe we have to embrace this responsibility.
This is a great video I saw shared by Fiona Gittus at Tesco: