Working in a diverse environment is a source of continuous learning, inspiration and progress.

Shaden, Director in Risk Advisory at Deloitte France, explains what diversity and inclusion means to her.

Bonjour (“hello” in French), my name is Shaden and I work as a Director in Risk Advisory at Deloitte France. 
Coming from a diverse background, I can confirm that diversity and inclusion has so far been and will remain an important issue for me. I am glad to be able to explain what this means to me personally.

Working in a diverse environment is a source of continuous learning, inspiration and progress.

Why is talking and caring about diversity and inclusion so important for you? 
For me, talking and caring about diversity and inclusion is important for two main reasons. First, it brings about personal and professional development, at my level as well as that of the teams I manage on a daily basis. When the team members come from diverse backgrounds, they end up learning from each other. Second, it also brings about added value and greater impact to our clients. 

What is your personal understanding of diversity and inclusion? 
My understanding of diversity and inclusion is being open-minded to accept the differences between individuals, which make them unique. Within Deloitte, it is about including people as they are in order to work together as a close team to reach the same goal. 

What does it mean to you to work in a diverse environment?
Working in a diverse environment means working with people from different ages, gender, nationalities, ethnicities, beliefs and socio-economic backgrounds. Within Deloitte, throughout my missions and tasks I come across such diversity, which helps me develop many talents and enrich my thoughts. This is one of Deloitte’s greatest strengths since it creates an environment in which each person can feel accepted and valued. It also gives each person a sense of belonging, motivation and purpose. It contributes towards making the team spirit very strong!

What opportunities and challenges could appear when working in a diverse environment?
Working in a diverse environment is a source of continuous learning, inspiration and progress. It is also challenging because you constantly need to change the lens and put yourself in the shoes of those around you. You may have to handle more conflicts, but at the end, it proves more beneficial to everyone. 

What is your personal impact to living diversity and inclusion?
Given that my father is Lebanese and my mother is Jordanian with Syrian origins, and having lived in London, Paris and New York, I learnt to be open to and inquisitive about differences among people. As such, I am led to convey such attitude.  

How did you experience working with diverse colleagues and what did you learn from it?
At Deloitte, I consider myself lucky to be able to work with diverse colleagues on a daily basis. This is a continuously enriching experience. For example, in 2019 I participated in a training program in Deloitte’s University in Brussels. On top of learning a lot from the training program itself, I met several colleagues from different nationalities and backgrounds. Their ideas, working methods and operating standards helped me open up to new perspectives of thinking. We worked on practical cases in small groups, each member had his/her own vision and approach in addressing these cases. As such, we were able to have a wider understanding of the challenges, tailor our answers accordingly and make more focused decisions with relevant points of view. Similarly, on a daily basis, Deloitte’s diversity allows me to make an impact that matters and makes us a valued partner for our clients.


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