We were ecstatic when BM’s name was announced and displayed on the screen – we couldn’t believe it! It’s hard to put into words what winning this award meant to me. As an external award it provides recognition that we are leaders in our sector. And it’s an honour to be acknowledged by our peers.
A strategic approach to ED&I
To be successful in business we must support our #bmFamily team by providing an environment allows them to flourish. This is achieved through the facilities we provide and our ethos.
Lots of studies have been conducted to research the impact that diverse and inclusive cultures have on a company’s success, and the results have been clear: inclusive organisations consistently outperform their less inclusive equals.
We started by creating a dedicated team to drive ED&I. When we set out on our journey, we developed an E&DI strategy and mission statement. This was the foundation stone that everything flowed from. The strategy helped us embed the principles at every level. Without this it would be a tick box exercise. Our CEO Ian Thomas met with us every month, to see what support we would need from the business. This endorsement sent a clear signal that E&DI is important at BM.
Our ED&I journey
The biggest takeaway is that it’s a journey, not a race or a destination. You can’t jump into this and say it’s done, internally or externally. Writing the ED&I mission statement was just the beginning. These are the key elements we put in place:
- Create a strategic plan.
- Understand why you’re doing it
- Get board buy in from the start
- Regularly update the board with progress
- Established baseline metrics
- Create a communication plan and activity calendar
- Outline the role everyone plays in helping achieve goals
- Use training to incorporate the ED&I principles into every system and process
We are on an ED&I journey and we still have work to do to make BM truly diverse. By measuring our ED&I data and being transparent about sharing it, we can have honest conversations about our progress and make evidence-based decisions to shape a better future for everyone.
If I could wave my magic wand – I would go one step further. I would add in ‘equity’. Equity recognises that some groups were (and are) disadvantaged in accessing opportunities and are, therefore, marginalised. Equity, therefore, means increasing diversity by mitigating conditions of disadvantaged groups.
Why enter awards?
Entering awards forces you to look at your business from a different perspective and compare yourself to your peers. I also believe they encourage ideas and continual improvement. A bit of healthy competition between companies is good too! It has always my desire to help not just BM but other companies around us. I hope that our ED&I journey, and case study will inspire others.
I was so happy with the progress we made in ED&I in year one. And winning the Springboard ED&I award has been the ‘cream on the cake”!
I would like to thank my co-chair Murray Soper and the rest of the ED&I team for their support in driving forward ED&I at BM and for helping us win this award; Dorianne Casey, Cathy Hutcheson, Samantha Lawrence Diana Pintrijel and Tripti Seth.