The #BalanceForBetter Campaign knows what it wants

As we move further into 2019, and into the uncharted territory of Brexit, we all have to do everything in our power to avoid losing momentum around our gender and inclusion agendas. Keeping an eye on our fundamental principles and what makes business sense is the only option. Uncertainty is always distracting, but it’s a mistake to let it displace what we are certain about: the need to create gender balance across business and society. To build more inclusive workplaces.

We know from experience that it’s easy to lose momentum when the economy is challenging, particularly when resources and investment are redirected. In the 2008 recession, many organisations lost years of hard-earned progress and alarmingly fast. Brexit or no Brexit, gender balance is good for business, which means that when our economy demands our immediate attention, gender balance does too.

In times of crisis, it might seem to make sense for inclusion and leadership development initiatives to take a back seat but this discounts that these initiatives have a very significant impact on employee engagement and productivity. This is no more so than when organisations, leaders and their employees face uncertainty in the economic and political climate. Now, more than ever, cultivating a sense of belonging and alignment with the company’s vision and purpose is fundamental to executing your business strategy. And UK businesses need a boost, because in terms of productivity, we are already lagging behind the rest of Europe.

During periods of extreme restructuring, minorities are hit the hardest, so we have to work even harder to sustain balance and support our clients in moving through the organisational change in an inclusive way. During periods of change we know that vulnerable employees, like working parents and minority groups, very often slip under the radar. They are disproportionately impacted by voluntary and actual redundancy. Unless specifically addressed, this issue can have devastating consequences on the diversity of your talent pipeline later on.

This year, as well as giving us a chance to celebrate how far we’ve come, International Women’s Day reminds us to pay attention and focus on what really matters. Collectively we all play a part in intentionally keeping gender balance and inclusion front and center, no matter what else is happening.

During periods of extreme restructuring, minorities are hit the hardest, so we have to work even harder to sustain balance and support our clients in moving through the organisational change in an inclusive way. During periods of change we know that vulnerable employees, like working parents and minority groups, very often slip under the radar. They are disproportionately impacted by voluntary and actual redundancy. Unless specifically addressed, this issue can have devastating consequences on the diversity of your talent pipeline later on.

This year, as well as giving us a chance to celebrate how far we’ve come, International Women’s Day reminds us to pay attention and focus on what really matters. Collectively we all play a part in intentionally keeping gender balance and inclusion front and center, no matter what else is happening.


Chris Parke, CEO, Talking Talent