Critical Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Conversations at Davos 2021

The World Economic Forum’s Annual Meeting, or Davos, continues this week with critical conversations around diversity, equity, and inclusion (DE&I).

This week we’re following the World Economic Forum’s Annual Meeting, or Davos, which continues today with educational sessions under such themes as Beyond Geopolitics, Fairer Economies, and more. Tomorrow will feature conversations on the themes How to Save the Planet and Better Business, as well as topics within Society & the Future of Work. In particular, the sessions “Stories Move Mountains” and “Delivering Social Justice in the Recovery” center around the ever-pressing topic of diversity, equity, and inclusion (DE&I).

In “Stories Move Mountains,” a diverse panel will discuss the role of women in leadership positions as well as what environment is needed for women to step into creative leadership. Research shows that only 7.8% of Fortune 500 CEOs are female, while less than 1% are women of color. Gender is often included in social stereotypes, leading to limited ideas of who is a leader and who is not. Moving away from these limited ideas includes having tough conversations about bias, and then building a pipeline of talent that fosters success for diverse women, allowing them to move up the ladder to the C-Suite.

The conversations around diversity continue with “Delivering Social Justice in the Recovery,” in which business and government leaders will discuss social justice as the world recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic. While the idea of social justice often conjures up images of picket lines and protests, it also includes addressing systemic barriers to progress from the top-down. Businesses and their leaders are crucial to addressing sustainability, racial equity, and other policies to ensure that recovery works for everyone.

Such critical conversations are part of an overall diversity, equity, and inclusion (DE&I) strategy that is at the forefront of the new normal. Business leaders, mobility professionals, and the world at large have increasingly focused on DE&I to foster working environments where people can be their whole selves and reach success. Research shows that employee concern about diversity and inclusion increased 19% globally, with more employees expecting an active promotion of DE&I from their leaders. In the U.K. alone, hiring demand for DE&I-related roles surged by 106% in the past two years, while job postings for these roles increased by 30%.

Mobility professionals are key to addressing DE&I as part of the overall employee experience. Whether performing bias mitigation practices or staying up-to-speed on individual diversity environments from country to country to ensure expat safety, mobility professionals play a key DE&I role in businesses. When businesses focus on such DE&I strategies, they can build a pipeline of diverse talent while increasing return on investment (ROI) in global mobility, all the while fostering an inclusive and equitable workplace. They’re more than industry buzzwords, they’re essential to better business, and a better world.

Such critical conversations are just one part of this week’s Annual Meeting, or Davos, from the World Economic Forum that we’ll be following this week. Join us as we continue to explore the Davos themes while hearing from global leaders as they examine critical questions facing businesses and the world.

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