*answer attributed to the DE&I team at Feed
Despite being the year that stopped the world in its tracks, 2020 has also been a progressive time for positive change. We’ve seen communities stand together on matters of racial prejudice, trans rights, sustainability, and mental health. As leaders in the creative industries, it is incumbent upon us to keep the momentum going.
At our very core, marketers are storytellers. We are uniquely situated to tell marginalised stories on a global scale and create opportunities for more people to see themselves reflected in the media they consume. In telling those stories, we must also reject tokenism.
It is up to us, as managers, to create the culture internally that we wish to see reflected in the world around us. Recruitment may seem the natural place to begin creating meaningful shifts towards more inclusive workplaces, and hiring diverse talent at every level is, of course, vital, but organisations will fall short unless employee development is consciously inclusive as well. And we must be careful not to limit our definition of ‘diverse’ to mean only gender, race and sexuality. Economic background, ability, age, and neurodiversity should also be included.
We shouldn’t ever shy away from tough conversations, especially during a pandemic when team members who belong to marginalised communities may have been hit harder this year financially, socially, mentally, and physically. We should empower those with lived experiences of marginalisation, giving them the resources and platforms to help lead the way. The creative industry has the opportunity to set the stage for radical listening, to take a step back and create opportunities for marginalised communities to share their stories and thrive. Let’s make 2020 the catalyst for long lasting change.