The term 'Belonging' has many meanings, but when applied within the context of a work environment, it can be summoned as meaning "being yourself and being seen", in any situation and with people who may have a totally different background or believes than oneself.

On the 10th of October 2022, in celebration of World Inclusion Day, RMC Wise co-hosted a conference on The Value of Gender Diversity. The conference echoes the commitment of RMC Wise to foster diversity and inclusion within our culture. The purpose of the conference goes beyond gender diversity. It's aim was to increase awareness on how we, as leaders and entrepreneurs, can ensure we give equal opportunities and create a culture that helps our people thrive within our organisations. Anyone with the right set of skills and drive, irrespective of their gender, race and other potentially discriminatory factor, should have an opportunity to have a seat on the table.

For years, Milton Friedman's doctrine has influenced entrepreneurs, in that "an entity's greatest responsibility lies in the satisfaction of the shareholders". Yet over the past years, we have experienced a shift in mentality, with business ethics focusing more on the wellbeing of shareholders and the stakeholders, encouraging a people-centred approach at the workplace. Investors are also increasingly taking interest in Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) matters.

It is generally accepted that building teams of talented people from different backgrounds and creating an inclusive culture, is not only the right thing to do, but it also leads to better company results. People will be more loyal to the company, will engage more, and will feel more motivated to create value. In the current rapidly changing and increasingly complex environment that we must navigate through, having a diverse team will help businesses to retain solutions which are creative and innovative, which in turn will lead to better performance and a competitive advantage.

At RMC, we hire people with talent, ability and desire to become their best version. We cultivate a culture that welcomes talent from different backgrounds and make people feel like they belong with us. By building a diverse and inclusive culture, RMC Wise can leverage on the differences of our people and build talented teams that can deliver excellent solutions while ensuring a resilient and more ethical business.

During The Value of Gender Diversity conference, several varying viewpoints were outlined, proof of the keen desire to address the deficiencies which stand in the way of having a truly inclusive culture, where everyone can feel like they belong and can thrive. Some of the key takeaways are on false societal narratives on what it takes for women to take on certain leadership roles. Raising a family should not be assumed to be a prerogative of the woman. Men and women need to have an equal voice in determining who and how to shoulder the responsibilities. Gender diversity is proven to enhance economic growth and innovation whilst promoting amore efficient corporate governance. In order to address the limited pool of talent, organisations need to embrace a culture that fosters employee retention and attracts people for the right reason. The world of work is changing for everyone, and both men and women are seeking greater flexibility.

Beyond the gender balance, it is important that every member of an organisation has an equal voice. The private sector can truly influence the mindset of our society, on matters like gender balance and other ESG factors for the wellbeing of society at large. We have a responsibility to build a future that everyone is excited about and is treated fairly.

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