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Diversity, Equality and Inclusion is not a woman vs man thing….

By Iman Hill, IOGP Executive Director

Iman Hill, IOGP Executive Director

Pleased to see a rise in the number of posts about women in business and industry. But I have a small personal request/suggestion.

Please can we stop the ‘them and us’ messaging and mindset. Diversity, Equality and Inclusion isn’t about proving that women are better than men.

Diversity is good for the world and business because different ways of approaching a problem leads to innovative solutions. We are each shaped by our backgrounds, upbringing, religious beliefs, political beliefs, sexual orientations, heritage, and life experience. I can’t imagine that anyone can disagree that having a multitude of people from different backgrounds and cultures together in the same environment working for the same goals can be anything but positive.

Equality, freedom from bias or favouritism and the right to impartial treatment is just a basic human right. Who are we to judge that one skin colour, ethnic origin or gender is superior to another and deserves better treatment, better access to opportunities or better pay?

Inclusion creates a culture of acceptance, respect for differences and the empowerment of individuals because instead of worrying about ‘being different’ we can celebrate it and feel free to be the best version of ourselves.

There are women in the past and today who love the fact that they get to be at home doing one of the hardest jobs in the world, bringing up children and keeping the family home together. And they adore their men for affording them the opportunity to do so.

For those of us who also want to be in industry or business let’s not make our story be about women vs men or that “they (men) get to be mediocre so why can’t we?”. A sentiment I’ve seen expressed recently which does nothing to advance the case for change. Let’s make it about the gender pay gap or the subtle sexism that still goes on today. And about the fact that we don’t want to be defined by our gender, skin colour or ethnicity. We only want to be defined by how good we are.

This article is also published on LinkedIn.

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