Regulation can never be the solution to getting more women into IT or Cybersecurity – or getting more BAME or female professionals on boards.
Indeed, if you force diversity on a leadership group- the resultant resentment towards the perceived recipient of favour – i.e. whether that’s a BAME professional or a woman – isn’t worth the stress to be endured working within an environment that has been coerced – through regulation – to ‘accept’ the professional.
“Human Issue – Human Solution”
Whilst society can’t disregard inequality, have you ever stepped back to think that, despite the bias that exists globally in most humans (here’s my 2014 post ‘White men aren’t the Glass Ceiling Humans are!’) a member of a different race or gender has probably helped you – at least once in your life? If so, then it’s best to seek to seek out people of the same character to work with – rather than seek to work with firms or persons who have been forced to accept one as part of a quota.
There’s nothing worse – professionally – than sitting around a table with humans who resent your knowledge, skills or even presence in the room, because you’ve got different physical traits to them.
‘Reflection of Gratitude’
Do take a moment to reflect on this question i.e. ‘has anyone from the opposite gender or race given me a helping hand – ever?’ If so, remember there are many more of that person’s type out there! Here’s a list of five (six) of my career helpers from a different race or the opposite gender to me, in the past.
Of course, my DD – Emmanuel Adebayo – the man who architected my career, who’s always championed my vision and dreams – i.e. a man who’s never allowed me to dwell with my head bowed low in discouragement – thanks for everything!
The key to diversity on Boards and in the IT and Cybersecurity industries doesn’t lie in regulation, or in segregated diversity groups in the workplace; rather it lies in the recognition by each company and hiring leader that – each human has one brain, one heart and a unique way of thinking – regardless of their physical appearance. Regulation can’t coerce a mindset transformation, rather – reluctant conformance.
In essence, hiring leaders and leading edge companies need to consider what they’re seeking to hire for their company’s growth i.e. the best brains (knowledge), best hearts (character), and professionals with a high dose of emotional intelligence – regardless of the humans’ outward appearance.
It can only serve a company well to have a diverse team of minds and humans working towards a profitable enterprise.
What do you think?
This article was previously published on LinkedIn.
Ibukun-Emmanuel-Adebayo is an ENFJ happy human & boardroom certified servant-leader .
She has spent 15 years within the C-Suite and on boards in the UK Social Enterprise, Arts and Consultancy sectors delivering strategic & operational systems, policies & processes, to help firms grow & reduce operational risk including IT, Cyber & internal fraud risk.
She is passionate about business integrity and compassionate about her fellow-humans.