Our panel promise

The panel promise is our endeavour to work towards diversity of thought in panels at events, forums and/or conferences in which Deloitte plays a role.

An overview

Due to various long-entrenched factors, the composition of speakers at events often does not reflect the myriad voices that make up the workforce and society today. The absence of these voices is much more than just bad optics, it’s the absence of a fresh perspective and the danger of decision making with blinders – something with serious long-term implications.

Through the panel promise, our endeavour is to keep encouraging a speaker ratio of 40% women, 40% men, and 20% other underrepresented groups at all events/conferences that are either organised by Deloitte, or by a third party with Deloitte as a knowledge partner/sponsor (or in other similar roles).

How will we do this?

Our colleagues who are actively involved in organising events/conferences and similar speaking events will be the advocates of the panel promise, educating internal teams as well as external counterparties about the initiative, its objectives, and desired outcomes, so that everyone actively works towards an equitable speaker ratio from the get-go. Deloitte teams will also recommend diverse subject matter experts from within and beyond our organisation, in situations where third-party organisers need it. In parallel, we will also build up our own pipeline of subject matter experts so that our pool of speakers eventually reflects the 40:40:20 ratio.

This is going to involve sustained efforts

We want the panel promise to be internalised instead of enforced. Having a panel that has been force-fitted with the 40:40:20 ratio at the cost of quality is far from ideal. Swinging to the opposite end of the spectrum (for e.g., an all-women panel where the subject matter doesn’t necessitate it) is not the solution either. Internalising the concept and substantiating intent with ability is going to take time and perhaps some flexibility in the interim, and we’re all for it. However, we will continue to fuel the evolution within our organisation and in our ecosystem.

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