Originally featured on the Turn the Talk blog.
In March 2019 with others from across the industry we launched Turn the Talk as a wider industry initiative.
It came off the back of a number of discussions with people in the industry who were frustrated at seeing the same faces representing the industry.
We knew that there were so many more people with interesting and different perspectives on the industry, but they either weren’t getting the opportunities to shine, or didn’t feel like they could take the opportunity.
Turn the Talk was set up as a vehicle that could help highlight and change the factors that resulted in ‘the same old faces’ representing the industry.
What are the issues that Turn the Talk aims to tackle?
Ensuring employers welcome diverse talent into the industry
Increase the number of people that are publicly representing the industry
Providing access to free learning and development
Changing (intentional or unconscious) discriminatory attitudes which aren’t inclusive
In just a year we think the industry has made significant progress to address these challenges. Some of these efforts have been tackled by individual companies as part of their own diversity and inclusion strategies. Some efforts have been more visible, for example active changes that event organisers or media outlets have made to become more inclusive. Progression is happening, but things don’t change overnight.
For those of us that have created Turn the Talk we are determined to continue to use the initiative as a driver of change, in a responsible manner that can contribute to an industry that is represented by a diverse and inclusive range of people.
Turn the Talk’s commitment this year
So, what are we planning for 2020? There have been a number of individuals who have been involved in Turn the Talk in the last twelve months, all of whom have given up their time and expertise free of charge. The initiative is not for profit, and we do it in addition to our main jobs.
Because Turn the Talk has gained momentum since launching, and because we have limited time and resources we wanted to share our goals for 2020. We are doing this so that you know what we plan to commit our efforts to this year.
The Turn the Talk objective is simple;
“We want to initiate industry-wide change that creates and recognises a broader spectrum of role models.”
Why is this important? Individuals and organisations that back Turn the Talk are often inspired by the challenges and issues that need changing. We want the project to highlight the positive intent and progression that the industry appears to be embracing. It’s important to make these changes with an air of optimism!
Last year the project focussed heavily on how to get a wide array of individuals into public speaking, and therefore onto the stages and forums that represent the industry. We will continue to do this, but the objective has been expanded into ‘creating and recognising a broader spectrum of role-models’, because we know that role models are not only the people that take to the stage.
What does Turn the Talk plan to do this year?
Host another workshop – we will deliver a free summer event that provides real support and personal development, through a lively and inclusive forum
Highlight positivity – we will provide content on the Turn the Talk site that helps individuals with tangible tips and advice, tackling the diversity issue in a productive and positive way that highlights role models from across the industry
Collaborate and support existing event organisers – we are open and willing to offer our time and support to any event or conference that would like to embrace the Turn the Talk ethos to make changes to their event
Increase awareness – We plan to work with the other initiatives out there to spread awareness of the great stuff that our industry is doing to create and develop an inclusive and diverse industry
How can you get involved?
If your organisation would like to get more involved, or would like to showcase your own efforts in support of the initiative please visit the Turn the Talk website.
We are always on the lookout for more individuals who want to get involved. If you have any questions, or would to get involved more in Turn the Talk please drop the Turn the Talk team an email.