Racism and ‘allyship’

16 Nov 2020   By Alison Maitland

ALONGSIDE the Covid-19 crisis, the police killing of George Floyd and the resurgence of the #BlackLivesMatter movement in the US and many other countries have been defining events of 2020.

They have focused attention on the persistence and the price of racial inequality, something that each of us has a responsibility to acknowledge and address.

Like many other white people, I’ve been listening, reading, watching and taking part in discussions about race over recent months with a heightened awareness that, individually and collectively, we must do more. While it’s a continuing process, here are some lessons I’ve learned that I’d like to share.

‘Not knowing’ has consequences Continue reading

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Inclusion in the new era of work

13 Sept 2020     By Alison Maitland

BY MOST ACCOUNTS, we are moving into a new era of work. For those who typically worked in an office, the Covid-19 crisis has tipped the balance decisively in favour of workplace flexibility.

The knowledge workforce of the future looks set to be much more ‘distributed’ – located partly in offices, partly at home, and partly in other places.

How can leaders and managers take inclusive action to get the best from all their people in this fast-changing environment? Continue reading

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Systemic inequities need radical responses

13 July 2020  By Alison Maitland

The economic crisis caused by the global pandemic risks reinforcing inequalities around the world. What needs to be done to prevent this and to stop the pockets of progress of recent decades from being reversed? It is an urgent question that needs radical responses.

Current trends demonstrate the interconnectedness of systemic challenges, showing overlapping disadvantages linked to gender, ethnicity and socio-economic status. Continue reading

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Diversity numbers are ‘not enough’

26 June 2020 INdivisible cited in Germany’s ada magazine

INdivisible, which I co-wrote with Rebekah Steele, was featured in an article about diversity and inclusion by journalist Alexandra Borchardt in the German magazine ‘ada’, which focuses on the digital world. Borchardt quoted our argument that it’s not enough for organisations to tick the ‘diversity numbers’ box, and that the work of inclusion goes much deeper and wider. Here’s the excerpt, translated from the German: Continue reading

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Crisis lessons in inclusive leadership

17 May 2020       By Alison Maitland

‘WE WILL get through this together, but only if we stick together, so please be strong and be kind.’ This was one of the messages that have elevated Jacinda Ardern, Prime Minister of New Zealand, to the widely conferred status of one of the world’s best leaders during the Covid-19 crisis.

The pandemic has highlighted the gulf between good and bad leadership, and the difference it makes, in this case to people’s very survival. Continue reading

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Three lessons from the pandemic to make organisations more human

29 April 2020 What can leaders learn from the Covid-19 crisis about how to make organisations more human in the digital age? I offer three answers to build and sustain inclusive work environments in this article for the Octave Programme’s web magazine. You can read this and other pieces written by me and my co-author Rebekah Steele about our book INdivisible here.

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How Covid-19 will impact working lives

11 April 2020 I was interviewed by Annette Young for France 24’s The 51 Per Cent show, which focuses on women’s rights and equality. I talked with her in the 10 April edition about how we can use the mass shift to virtual working during the pandemic to create fairer, more inclusive work environments. (The short interview starts at 6:30 minutes into show).

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Speaking about INdivisible with The Conference Board

7 April 2020 I was interviewed this month by The Conference Board Europe’s Marion Devine about INdivisible, the new book on inclusion that I’ve co-written with Rebekah Steele. You can listen to, and download, the 30-minute podcast here.

We discuss why organisations must build and sustain inclusion if they are to respond effectively to disruptive global challenges, what’s held up progress to date, and how our new, comprehensive approach has parallels with the whole-system, global response needed to tackle the Coronavirus pandemic.

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The ‘power of everyone’ – the importance of inclusion at work

Building and sustaining inclusive organisations is more important than ever in these very challenging times. In a chapter called ‘The Power of Everyone‘ for the 2020 BBVA book, Work in the Age of Data, I explain why inclusive systems and behaviour help people and organisations adapt to the new realities of the business world and working life. Read the article here. The book and article are available free as part of BBVA’s OpenMind project.

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Amplifying women’s voices

12 January 2020  By Alison Maitland

At a time of deep political and social divisions, when female politicians have resigned citing the level of abuse and threats they’ve received, it is more critical than ever that women are able to make their voices heard.

Speaking out is far from easy. When I wrote leadership interviews for the Financial Times, I sought to profile as many women as possible. The women were less keen to be profiled publicly. Some refused. Some said yes, but tried to set limits on what they would talk about. The few who were enthusiastic Continue reading

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