When the Copenhagen Pride Parade returns on 20 August 2022, Deloitte will once again be there to not only show support for our LGBT+ network, GLOBE, but also to take a public stand on diversity and inclusion in society. However, “the real push happens in the daily doings,” says CEO Anders Dons.
Once a year, during Copenhagen Pride Week, the streets of Copenhagen are covered in rainbow flags to shine a light on LGBT+ rights in Denmark and around the world. This year is no different, and when the Copenhagen Pride Parade sets off from Frederiksberg City Hall Square, Deloitte will be there as both a proud partner and supporter.
“For Deloitte, supporting Copenhagen Pride is a tangible way to show what we stand for. It is also important to show our people that at Deloitte they can leverage their talent and grow regardless of their sexual orientation,” says CEO Anders Dons.
But Pride also has a wider societal impact, not only for current Deloitte professionals but also for generations to come. As Camilla Bang, who is part of the GLOBE Steering Committee at Deloitte, puts it:
“To me, Pride means showing my daughters that they are growing up in a world with love, diversity and inclusion. I want them to be proud of who they are and the fact that they have two mothers. Imagine how boring life would be if we were all the same. We are all equal, but definitely not the same.”
Anders Dons is, however, very conscious that only showing support once a year during Pride is far from sufficient, nor is it who we are at Deloitte:
The real push happens in the daily doings. That’s when we need to demonstrate that it’s not only words or pinkwashing. We have perhaps taken social inclusion for granted in the past, but as more and more nationalities and cultures join Deloitte Denmark, it is important that we include all of these perspectives when we design and build an inclusive environment for all.”
Expanding the focus on inclusion
Diversity, respect and inclusion can therefore not be reduced to a sub-agenda that is dusted off and brought to life once a year during Pride Week. It is about taking an active stance and showing up for the LGBT+ community all year around.
Deloitte’s internal LGBT+ network, GLOBE, is therefore working to foster a truly inclusive culture where LGBT+ colleagues feel they can be open about their identity and feel confident in bringing their true selves to work every day.
Making diversity, respect and inclusion real and authentic is also high on the agenda of Deloitte’s People & Purpose Leader, Camilla Kruse:
“So far, we have had a huge focus on gender balance, and now we need to expand this focus. Over time, we have gotten invaluable inputs from the GLOBE network on challenges but moving forward we wish to mobilise and involve the network even more than we have done so far to improve inclusion."
In a report by Deloitte Global from June 2022 conducted among 600 members of the LGBT+ community in 12 geographies (not including Denmark), respondents report the positive impact of having allies support their LGBT+ networks and indicate that this support has been critical in making them feel comfortable being open about their gender identity and/or sexual orientation at work.
Having a strong internal LGBT+ network and allyship is therefore key to LGBT+ inclusion. And while there is already an LGBT+ and allyship network within Deloitte, there is still much progress to be made.
“I believe we could increase the focus on how to be more inclusive of queer people – especially transgender people – within Deloitte. There will always be opportunities to do more and get better, even at Deloitte Denmark,” says David Pereira, who is a member of GLOBE.
David also highlights that respecting someone’s pronouns is a simple way to help create an everyday inclusive culture:
“Your colleague can have different pronouns than what you assume, and it can be mentally damaging to constantly correct your peers.”
Deloitte is always striving to become an increasingly inclusive workplace. For Mathilde Nærland, who is part of the GLOBE Steering Committee, workplace inclusion is when everyone is treated equally and has equal opportunities.
She highlights Deloitte’s new parental leave policy, which grants equal terms to all parents in the firm, as something meaningful to her:
“I've always wondered which 'box of rules' would apply to me in terms of parental leave. Fortunately, with the new policy, I have the same rights as all other parents in Deloitte and will no longer have to fit into the 'co-mother' box; I will merely be a 'mother'. This may seem like a trifle to some, but when such things are manifold in your life, they eventually impact your feeling of being included and equal. Now I will be recognised for who I am – and that feels nice."
If she is to give one simple piece of advice on how to create a more inclusive everyday culture, she would ask to not assume the gender of someone’s partner:
“Next time simply ask, ‘what does your partner do?’ and wait until you hear the gender before making presuppositions. This might be irrelevant 9/10 times, but the one time is worth it for your colleague’s feeling of inclusivity and representation.”
At Deloitte, we are excited to join the Pride Parade on 20 August and celebrate diversity and inclusion for all!