Summit told ‘organisations must be ready to listen to employees'

At the IoD summit are (from left) Marcelo Rodrigues (Schroders Personal Wealth), Paul Gillen (Lewis Silkin), Kirsty McManus (IoD NI), Martin McKay (Texthelp) and Caroline Van Der Feltz (Danske Bank). Picture: Darren Kidd/PressEye

ORGANISATIONS in the north “must be ready not only to take action but to listen to employees”, the inaugural IoD Directors Summit has heard.

IoD diversity and inclusion ambassador Paul Gillen, employment partner at Lewis Silkin, made the comments as part of a panel session entitled ‘Closing the Skills Gap' which focused on how diversity and inclusion in the workforce can help organisations address critical skills gaps and improve productivity and long-term business success.

The panel discussed how businesses can incorporate diversity and inclusion into the structure of their organisations for the benefit of all, with Paul noting that companies “should be honest about where they are on their diversity and inclusion journey” and that in terms of resources and support, “equity is more important than equality.”

The summit, sponsored by Schroders Personal Wealth, also provided business leaders with an insight into Northern Ireland's political landscape, current challenges related to recruitment and talent, and what a post-Covid workplace may look like.

Kirsty McManus, director at IoD NI, said: “It is wonderful at this summit to come together as a community and to gain such a variety of expert insights from our talented speakers and panellists.

“I would like to thank everyone who joined us for our very first event, and I hope that attendees will utilise what they have learned today to improve their own policies and practice.”

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