Emeli Sandé spoke about the need for more diversity in top executive positions and how the movement can benefit from a change in psychology
MOBO CEO Kanya King, singer-songwriter Emeli Sandé, Accenture managing director Nnenna Ilomechina and entrepreneur Natasha Chetiyawardana discussed diversity and MOBO's new platform – Mobolise – with the goal of creating a more equitable and representative creative industry.
"I definitely feel that we need more representation within executive roles. It still is completely disproportionate – even more so now that you have so much black music in the charts – and still I can count on one hand how many executives I know. You go into the labels, and you have people and A&Rs, but to actually get to the top boss and sit in an office and it be a black man, let alone black woman, is very, very rare" -- Emeli Sandé
MOBO and Accenture came together at Web Summit to launch Mobolise, a platform that connects black talent with the best career opportunities and most forward-thinking organisations.
"I think the one thing that really excites me about this project is the change of psychology. Because I think we get stuck in this mindframe that everything should be a struggle; it becomes normal that everything is a battle. We forget that that's actually not as it should be" Emeli Sandé
"You kind of get used to this resistance all the time, and having to stand by yourself – you against the world. It helps you move forwards, but it's a hindrance. You know, it'll always put us on the back foot compared to somebody who doesn't have to face this resistance all the time."
Nnenna Ilomechina, managing director at Accenture Strategy, acknowledged the importance of a strong network for building diversity.
"As I moved forward in my career, especially in technology and professional services, one of the things that I noticed is that your network is the most powerful thing that gives you the experiences which then enable you to develop and grow. I was lucky enough in my career to have some folks who were in my network, who were able to provide some of those experiences that would break the barriers that unconscious bias can sometimes put in your way. That's why I think something like this is so important."