As an organisation, WIBF is proud to be able to support the careers of our individual members. We are also glad that we work with some fantastic corporate partners who are working to ensure their organisations are diverse and inclusive, setting examples that provide examples for the UK financial services industry to follow.
Here, we showcase a few of these initiatives for International Women’s Day (IWD) from a handful of our 75 corporate partners.
Deloitte wants its employees, at all levels, to be reflective of society and is committed to creating diversity of thought and high performing teams to deliver the best solutions for its clients. In 2014, the company set an executive priority to maintain that unwavering commitment to gender equality, ensuring its staff can succeed, thrive and be their authentic selves.
2023 sees the company showcasing members of its Gender Balance Network on social media and internally, encouraging people to join the conversation about how they will #EmbraceEquity.
Richard Hammell, Managing Partner, UK Financial Services, stated: “We are looking forward to IWD on the 8th of March and we will be taking the opportunity to celebrate the fantastic achievements from the women at our firm. Our focus on diversity and inclusion unites us through shared values and encourages us to bring our own ideas, skills, and perspective. Throughout March, we will be honouring IWD with a range of events including those organised through our Gender Balance Network and our wellbeing programme, Flourish.”
Nancy Dickinson, Director, Major Programmes, Financial Services and Co-Chair of WIBF’s Norwich chapter, added: “Deloitte’s partnership with WIBF supports us with our diversity and inclusion agenda, helping us connect, challenge, and inspire across our community. The year-round events programme offered through WIBF provides opportunity for personal development, mentoring and thought leadership and we are proud to share how we will celebrate International Women’s Day together.”
Katie Jackson, the UK Head of Forensic and a member of the Women in Leadership FSI Council, stated “Through our Flourish programme, we aim to raise levels of awareness and empathy for the challenges that face us as women in the workplace. Our sessions are designed to support, connect, and create a safe space for women and others to tell their stories.”
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This year sees International Women’s Day coinciding with the firm’s annual results day, and, while lots of communications have to focus on that, the team is also sharing a message on the day from its CEO.
This year sees two important initiatives showcased.
The first is its desire to see “No Woman Left Behind”, which asks whether gender diversity initiatives deliver for all women. While highlighting the achievements by gender diversity initiatives over the last decade, it focuses on representation by disability, race, religion, gender identity, social background, or sexuality and sets out the aim to ensure equitable access to funding and career opportunities so that all types of women can achieve the summit of their capabilities, leveraging evidence from a broad representation of successful female executives and entrepreneurs from all backgrounds.
Given the firm is passionate about creating inclusive economic opportunities through promoting inclusive markets and championing economic empowerment, Monday 6 March saw its event have a diverse panel of women explore how to drive genuinely equitable opportunity for ALL women, across ALL backgrounds and demographics, including discussing the benefits of economic empowerment for women and the forms that can take, and the importance of achieving a sustainable and an inclusive economic recovery.
Employees were encouraged to share the invite with someone who is outside their race, background, or affinity group to bring together a more diverse group of people together and encourage new, broader networks.
The second is the LSEG Women Inspired Network’s Leaderthon on Thursday 9 March. This aims to help budding or experienced leaders understand what it is like to be a leader at LSEG. The immersive leadership challenge is modelled on hackathons (coding challenges) and focuses on solving real world LSEG leadership challenges to give participants the opportunity to develop and flex their leadership skills.
Working in small teams to produce innovative, effective, and practical solutions to genuine leadership problems at LSEG, the programme offers support and feedback from leaders in the company and the chance to interact and network with your colleagues across LSEG. The Leaderthon was held in the firm’s Nottingham office as part of IWD 2022 and its feedback was so positive 2023 saw the programme extended to London to allow more employees to participate.
Using new research on gender to highlights of its diversity programmes, Moody’s Gender and Finance Hub showcases its commitment to gender equality across its business and in the communities where it operates.You can access the hub here: https://www.moodys.com/web/en/us/about/how-we-work/gender-finance.html.
IWD 2023 saw three activities promoted internally and hosted by its Women at Tesco Bank network.
The first was a fireside chat by Jacqui Ferguson, the bank’s Interim Chair, on Tuesday 7 March who reflected on her career journey and provided insights into her most valuable lessons and her perspective on the importance of gender equity.
On IWD itself, the team organised a second event entitled “How to further your career with Networks & Mentoring”. Here, the gender network was joined by representatives from its networks Hot@Tesco, Fertility and Parents & Careers, its D,E&I team and WIBF to discuss how networks and mentoring help employees achieve what they want from their careers.
Finally on Thursday 9 March, the network hosted an event for Saorsa Menopause Consultancy, a women-owned business that was formed four years ago as a result of the passion and dedication of Tesco Bank colleagues, Mo Caldwell and Pauline Nichols. The awareness event is for colleagues going through menopause, those supporting someone else, people who want to become an ally or anyone interested in knowing more.
Hosting a discussion on 2023 IWD’s theme of #EmbraceEquity, moderated by Kate Grant, Head of International HR, the firm host a panel which comprised the Co-Chairs from each of the firm’s EMEA employee resource networks: DE&I; Pride; Black Connection; Employee Impact Team; Asian Connections; and Wellbeing. The in-person event was also streamed across the company’s EMEA locations.