This year, #BlackLivesMatter protests around the world have encouraged many individuals and organisations to educate themselves about racism and to stand in solidarity against it. In honour of Black History Month, I wanted to talk about a fantastic new initiative here at Siemens Financial Services (SFS) led by our incredible staff.
At SFS, our Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) department has been around for years. But following the murder of George Floyd in May 2020, some of our staff took the initiative to form a new community to support the mental wellbeing of colleagues in these difficult times. Founded by 6 black people known as BEAUT – Black Equality Allies United Together – the group has since expanded significantly after receiving an overwhelming turnout to their Talk@12 discussions on “Do all Lives Matter?” attended by over 90 colleagues. The positive response to the event demonstrated the desire of employees across SFS to listen, learn and proactively engage with this important movement.
BEAUT’s mission is to drive equality and unity by addressing unconscious bias, raising awareness, encouraging accountability for self-education, and celebrating the diverse communities within SFS. For the SFS Black History Month, BEAUT has been delivering an exciting and interactive programme with weekly events taking a deeper look at aspects such as historical figures, music and style.
We’re all excited for the month ahead, but we also hope that with BEAUT, these learning and unlearning sessions can be extended beyond October and be made a part of our ongoing activities. BEAUT already has some other educational activities in store for later this year, such as an Inclusion Workplace Toolkit and Ally Suggestions.
I couldn’t be more pleased to see this new BEAUT programme thriving and wish to thank everyone who took a part in making it happen. There’s still a lot of work to do though, and as a business, we have a responsibility to take an active role in creating a culture of inclusion and supporting our diverse communities.
Julian Hobbs, CEO at Siemens Financial Services UK
Julian Hobbs is Chief Executive Officer at Siemens Financial Services Ltd UK. He joined Siemens in 2010, bringing with him 20 years extensive experience in financial services, across a variety of roles. He is an advocate for sustainability, working with local businesses and charities to support the local community, providing thought leadership and challenge to the financial services sector on areas such as diversity and inclusion and is passionate about attracting new talent into the industry.In his role at Siemens, Julian is driving forward the development of innovative and creative financing solutions to enable the capital investment needs of clients.