It is promising to see that the role of chief diversity officer has become increasingly common (“The evolution of the chief diversity officer”, Opinion, September 20).
However, it is vital that any incoming CDO has the correct support in place to ensure they can do their job effectively or else organisations risk appointments being little more than token gestures.
The value of such a role should be obvious. Not only is it the right thing to do. Boston Consulting Group found that companies with more diverse management teams have 19 per cent higher revenues.
So it is welcome news that more organisations increasingly recognise the importance of diversity and inclusion, rightly treating this as a higher priority than ever before. However, it is critical that firms embrace other fundamental steps towards improving diversity if progress is to truly be made.
This requires a clear and systematic strategy, including steps to increase diverse leadership, improve accountability around progress, establish an ethos of transparency and actively tackle discrimination where it arises.
Chief diversity officers will be vital to ensuring that these concrete steps are taken, but true progress will only be made possible when an entire organisation, its policies and culture are brought together.
Director, Totum Partners,
London EC2, UK
If you would like to know anything more about how Totum supports Chief Diversity Officers in the professional services sector, or find out more about the roles in diversity we are working on, contact [email protected]