Choosing a place to start

Today, on the eve of the election, marks 121 years of women’s suffrage, when we became the first country in the world to grant women the right to vote.

It’s an opportune time to reflect on how far we’ve come, but also to look forward to the work still to be done, not only in harnessing the potential of women in this country but of all our multitude of diverse ethnicities, abilities, genders and generations.

9 Note 250914

The $9 note, illustrating the gender pay gap where women earn $9 to every $10 that men do.

At DiverseNZ Inc, we’re developing an online Toolkit of resources, literature and tools for diversity & inclusion (D&I). To supplement the Toolkit, we’ve also produced three New Zealand case studies, focusing on people and organisations already championing D&I. A thought-provoking trend that emerged across all three stories was the importance of starting. Jan Bibby, General Manager of Human Resources at Vodafone New Zealand, explains: “You can pick just one or two things and do those. When you’ve got that working really well, and it’s part of your DNA, then you do something else.” Anthony Healy, Managing Director and CEO at BNZ described how, “…it doesn’t matter where you start, just start. Don’t feel you have to perfect the approach, because we’re all learning.”

It would be great to see more diverse ethnicities, abilities, genders and generations leading our country. Shoot for the stars and ask yourself the topical question: What could I do to increase diversity of leadership in a new NZ Inc? Whatever you decide, the most vital recommendation we can give is – Start. Start today. Start right now. If everyone did that one little action differently, imagine the possibilities, the future we could create…

“Diversity is the one true thing we all have in common. Celebrate it every day.”
— Author Unknown