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ByJoanne Lockwood

Secrets from the habitologist

Tony Winyard is mixed race but everyone thinks he is white and it's resulted in situations where he's discovered some people's true thoughts on racism rather than the face they show to the world

Tony helps people to make habits automatic. This started when he began to immerse himself in all aspects of health, he found he was easily able to impart his knowledge to others, but this didn’t translate into them being able to implement what they had learnt into their lives. . It was only when he read the book ‘tiny habits’ that everything clicked in to place and he realised that by starting small, scaling up gradually over time, you’re more likely to succeed in whatever behaviour you are trying to automate. If you set yourself an unachievable mission, you will often not enjoy it and feel deflated if you are not able to achieve it.

 
Published Published: 29.07.2021 Recorded Recorded: 12.05.2021 Episode Length Duration: 00:00 Downloads Downloads: 32
 

Over the space of 12 years Tony worked in 11 countries around the world as a DJ and in radio. He returned to the UK after becoming tired of living out of a suitcase and started working as a wedding DJ. He had to start on the bottom rung of the ladder as his past experience did not translate into this new sector but quickly learnt to understand his worth, adding to his repertoire and upskilling and finding the clients that appreciated his worth.

Tony trained in emotional intelligence and undertook psychology research from which he learnt to stop seeing himself as a victim and changed his thinking and outlook, something he credits with making him a much happier person. Living in so many different countries he learnt quickly how to adapt to different situations by meeting new people and how they interacted with him. He found that using humour can be the best way to connect with people.

Tony is mixed race as his father is black, but most people believe he is white British, which has allowed him to see another side of racism, as he saw people who would never make comments in front of someone who was a different race, make them to him as they saw him as the same as them. This gave him insight into who a person truly is, rather than who they may pretend to be. We all make assumptions and stereotypes quickly about someone, and then how often do we actually get to know the ‘real’ person. Tony’s parents divorced when he was young, so he grew up without his father in a very ‘white’ environment and didn’t feel confident telling people his father’s background because of how he looked. It took him until later in life to become comfortable with both who he is and his heritage.

Tony does not own a TV and hasn’t read a newspaper in a long time, something that he credits with reducing the stress in his life as he is not constantly updated on everything that is happening in the world. He is on social media, so is still connected and can make the decision as to whether he wants to find out more information about stories he sees online. This started when he realised, after spending so much time outside of the UK, that all of his views on the country had been shaped by what he had been reading whilst abroad and on many occasions, these were completely inaccurate. Channels all have their own agenda, that unless you are there to verify you will believe. We need to challenge our own preconceptions and stereotypes in order to find the ‘real’ information/person.


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SEE Change Happen

A huge thank you to our wonderful guest
Tony Winyard Tony Winyard
Tony Winyard Habits and Health
ByJoanne Lockwood

Homes for Heroes

Mushtaq Khan is passionate about tackling inequality, giving people the best chance in life through helping the social housing sector become more inclusive through leadership and governance, community services and workforce development.

When soldiers were returning from the trenches after World War I, the government launched an initiative called ‘homes for heroes’ and Mushtaq thinks that this is just as important today as we face multiple housing crises. He believes we need to, as a society build homes that are suitable for today’s need and to help people live and thrive. This crisis has been going on for last 30-40 years fuelled by the governments push on home ownership as the tenure of choice, houses being sold off through homes to buy resulting in being priced out of housing market as cities become unaffordable, and people spending a higher percentage of their income on their housing.

 
Published Published: 22.07.2021 Recorded Recorded: 10.05.2021 Episode Length Duration: 1:01:58 Downloads Downloads: 61
 

The emphasis on home ownership seems to be a particular British problem, with many European countries having thriving private rented and social housing sectors. They also have more regulation over private renting sector, something we do not have in this country. Mushtaq believes we need the private rented sector within the UK to become regulated, so that landlords have to adhere to a certain standards level and go through a registration process. At the moment anyone is able to set up a letting agency or become a private landlord and often they are using this as a money-making scheme, without having the tenant’s best interests at heart.  Perhaps stemming from the 1980’s Thatcher government allowing council tenants the right to buy their own homes, there does seem to be a stigma surrounding not being able to afford your own home. The homes that formed part of the Thatcher scheme were never replaced and many of these properties ended up on the private rental market, resulting in a huge loss of affordable housing. The scheme was designed as an asset to society but became privatised.

Mushtaq believes housing organisations have two functions; to be the best possible landlords and to act as a community anchor and help regenerate the areas they work in. However, the huge push for new houses has moved them away from these core values. Social housing was set up initially for everyone and to allow for truly mixed communities but there is now a stigma attached with it, often with social housing tenants needing to use a different entrance and not having access to all of the amenities that the homeowners do.

The government deems affordable housing as being 80% of what the market charges, but this is still unaffordable for many. We are seeing homeownership across the UK, as younger generations are priced out of the market. Mushtaq believes we need a housing market that is fair for everyone as currently a 1/3 of those who are homeless are from a minority background and you can only be declared homeless by the local authority, so we have ‘hidden’ homelessness. The state has withdrawn from its responsibility to care for everyone, we are seeing the rise in food banks, something that we did not have 10-12 years ago, and more means testing being brought in before people can access benefits. Universal basic income is therefore really important, as without this families are not able to budget, this is not helped by zero-hour contracts.


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Mushtaq Khan Mushtaq Khan
Housing Diversity Network
ByJoanne Lockwood

Freeing women from being prisoners of their pain

Diksha grew up in Uganda with Indian heritage and saw prejudice against the indigenous people first hand and then she herself became a refugee at the age of 15 and now wants to free all women from being prisoners of pain.

Diksha has been a practising therapist for 23 years and offers integrated wellbeing services for women helping them manage stress, anxiety and pain. She uses pain as a generic term to include physical, emotional, mental, societal and spiritual pain. Through her therapy she enables women to find their own strengths, embracing pain they may have experienced so they can work through it and begin to live their true potential, without societal pressures.

 
Published Published: 15.07.2021 Recorded Recorded: 07.05.2021 Episode Length Duration: 0:57:59 Downloads Downloads: 47
 

Diksha believes we live in a very patriarchal, often hypocritical society which has kept women suppressed and often those that have broken free of this often do not feel comfortable enough with their position to allow other women in, operating in a protective mode. She says fear disables us. If we are fearful we cannot be generous, so unless we deal with this we cannot be our authentic selves. As a society we seem to look down upon vulnerability and view asking for help as a weakness, but Diksha suggests that it is only by embracing our weaknesses that we become strong. From a young age we are often brought up believing that we need to achieve certain status symbols in order to be seen as successful. This can often lead to us constantly trying to achieve or wanting more, rather than being satisfied with where we are and if we cannot achieve whatever expectations we have set for ourselves or we believe society to expect of us, ultimately leading to a sense of failure.

Diksha grew up in Uganda living, as she views it ‘a charmed life’ but she was aware, especially for the indigenous people that life was very different. At the age of 15 she was forced to leave Uganda due to Idi Amin and went to India, before travelling to the UK, a move she found incredibly stressful, especially managing the cultural differences. Due to these moves she grew up never feeling like she belonged anywhere and feeling on the outside. She was unaware of racism that many others suffered during this period, due to being disconnected, something she traces back to growing up in a violent home. These past traumas have made her resilient and allow her within her role as a therapist to assist others with their own journeys. Her mission in life is to support women that need it, showing them everything that is available if they allow themselves to be vulnerable and ask for help, which is why she is so passionate about needing an integrated system as this allows for rapport and trust building. She believes we are often paralysed by our circumstances and don’t know how to break out of this, everything we want is on the other side of fear’, almost like Stockholm syndrome and we don’t have the tools or courage to break through this ‘fear’ barrier. Diksha ends by saying ‘you can do it, lets do it together.’


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Diksha Chakravarti Diksha Chakravarti
FiXme Ltd (UK)
ByJoanne Lockwood

Empowering everyone to be able to share their gifts with the world

Penny was just getting into her stride with managing in-person programmes when September 11th 2001 shifted her ways of working and forcing her to be an early adopter of virtual working.

Penny started her career as a Project & Programme Manager, working to ensure every programme was as good as it could possibly be and quickly realised that in order to achieve this she needed to focus on the attendees. She was just getting into her stride with managing in-person programmes when September 11th 2001 shifted her ways of working and forcing her to be an early adopter of virtual working. She was subsequently able to operate as a consultant to advise others on how to do this successfully and at short notice when COVID hit.

 
Published Published: 08.07.2021 Recorded Recorded: 30.04.2021 Episode Length Duration: 0:59:14 Downloads Downloads: 40
 

Penny believes one of the biggest lessons for people is that virtual working is not just about virtual meetings and instead looking at how to ensure the team are working effectively together. This means allowing people to work asynchronously around their other commitments and at a time that suits them, which all ensures businesses get their optimum output. At the start of the pandemic many people were sitting through back-to-back meetings, without breaks, which was not the best use of time. People need time to decompress, absorb and time to complete the ‘actions.’ If we try to shoehorn this in between meetings, then it will not be our best work. We need to create conditions where each person can contribute their best, so Penny advises that when designing a workshop or meeting this is taken into consideration. By thinking about the environment, you create and what is going to suit everyone; even asking the participants what they need you gain an understanding of what makes them tick – trying to make it work but with an element of fun and ensuring engagement.

As the facilitator it is important to remember that it is the attendees meeting and you are there as the catalyst to make it happen. This means that you need to be mindful of when you may have lost the audience and potentially pause and adapt. By gaining an understanding of each participant –their strengths/weaknesses/preferences and what they want to achieve from this meeting and how can you help them manage this, you are able to foster an inclusive environment. Without this you run the risk of a leader who thinks ‘I am in charge’ and ploughs on regardless. If this happens and the meeting is not going to plan, you risk the flight, fight, freeze response that is triggered when you are stressed.

Penny’s second book, which is released on the 12th July, ‘Making workshops work’, is about creating collaboration for our time. Within it she outlines her magic 6, which are questions you should ask yourself whilst preparing for running workshops/meetings. The first ‘we are here to?’, so try and summarise the purpose of the meeting in ideally 7 words. The second; ‘today we will?’ try and set 4/5 objectives against this. ‘Our plan’ – thinking about start/end times/ who is doing what/. One that Penny believes is often forgotten is ‘how are we going to work together’. The final step is ‘what next?’, so right from the beginning you are thinking about next steps. She believes if you are clear on the above both in your preparation and at the beginning of the meeting then the meeting/workshop will run smoother and shorter than it would be otherwise.

If you are able to narrate the agenda to the participants, creating a shared vision then you have their buy in from the very beginning. The core of how people work together is the same whether in-person, virtual or hybrid, it’s about helping each person do their best work.


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Penny Pullen Penny Pullen
Making Projects Work
ByJoanne Lockwood

We are making progress on gender equality, aren’t we?

We are in a time of fourth wave feminism, where we are focusing on the empowerment of women and striving for gender equality by addressing gender stereotypes and the marginalisation of women in society.

You would think that we would have made significant progress in the past 10 years. We are striving for greater representation in politics, and key roles in business. Yes, some progress is being made, but are we really making headway where it counts?

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ByJoanne Lockwood

She/her, He/him: what’s all the fuss about?

When I left school some 40 years ago, I was awarded a D in my GCE English O level. I wouldn’t have known what a pronoun was back in those days if it hit me between the eyes.

Now we cannot escape from pronouns appearing everywhere. Surely knowing what someone uses for their personal pronouns is kinda tedious, don’t you think?

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ByJoanne Lockwood

Morality of D&I doesn’t void bottom line benefits

For many there is a feeling that if we look too deeply into justifying diversity and inclusion initiatives with a business outcome, this will be seen as inauthentic, profit-orientated or tokenistic.

I come from the position that in order to make change and to improve our organisation’s culture, we need to look at both the moral and the business case as two sides of the same coin.

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ByJoanne Lockwood

Allyship and going beyond the #hashtag

We cannot venture on to social media these days without being bombarded with follow requests and #hashtags.

Do we ever stop to think about these #hashtags that we are following and using?

Many represent key calendar events; those that commemorate, those that promote visibility, and those that celebrate. Over the past 12 months we have seen #blacklivesmatter, #lgbthistorymonth, #mentalhealthawarenessweek and,of course, many more.

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ByJoanne Lockwood

Driving the message that inclusion is a cold-nosed business priority

Neil, the CEO of the REC, talks about his belief that responsible and conscious capitalism can be inclusive and be able to realise the benefits to their business

Inclusion is more than a buzz word in 2021, it is a critical business priority. The main message Neil shares with the Business leaders he works with is ‘don’t leave it to your HR Director’. Inclusion needs to be companywide and often a fundamental shift to ensure that employees feel comfortable within the environment you have created and can therefore perform to the best of their ability.

 
Published Published: 08.04.2021 Recorded Recorded: 19.03.2021 Episode Length Duration: 1:04:07 Downloads Downloads: 5109
 

Neil is a proud capitalist and feels priorities around inclusion and diversity can be associated with the political left. Businesses need to understand that they work hand in hand with society, they are not separate and instead are given a license to operate by the society in which they exist. They should reflect and serve the society in which they operate. Their customer base and potential employee base is more diverse than ever, and people perform at work when they are able to be their authentic selves. Neil believes, post-lockdown we will see the concept of responsible capitalism become more pronounced, allowing businesses to state their purpose more clearly and why their success is beneficial to not only their shareholders, but also the wider community. Businesses need to think long term how to stay competitive and this includes aligning what their employees want to achieve with what the business wants to achieve, and unless they can manage this, Neil predicts they will become progressively less relevant.

Our understanding of leadership within businesses is changing, welcoming a more authentic approach where leaders act with more humanity, actively using their influence to challenge any negative aspects of company culture and work towards making the problem go away. Neil believes the real art for leaders is to make the link to corporate reputation, understanding that by allowing people to bring their whole selves to work no one loses. Often this is missed, using flexible working as an example, which was originally brought in for working mothers, but was quickly realised that that level of inclusion benefit everyone and potentially allows a new route to open up disability employment. People planning needs to factor into business planning, and not human capital.  If recruitment is done well it opens up a huge amount of productivity upsides each year.

Post Lockdown different groups of the workforce will have varying priorities; with some keen to get back to the office whilst others will continue to prefer working from home. This poses a real challenge for businesses as they need to balance the two and engage both. This will make it harder, especially for bigger firms to ensure employees have a consistency of experience. The pandemic has made leaders more aware of employee’s home lives and mental health and we need to find a way to integrate this when the return to work begins. Neil says that if businesses are interested in driving a more inclusive economy now is a good time as the canvas is blank. We need to actively promote a society that works for everyone.

Quite often the experience required for a role is just ensuring that businesses are getting ‘more of the same’ and missing out on groups of people who have not had access to the same capital as others. We should look at a person’s lived experiences and what they would be able to bring to the role. Recruiters have a big role part to play in this and need to start having more in-depth discussions with their clients; finding out what they really want from their ideal candidate and ensuring they have effective diversity and inclusion within their processes. This is something they will have to get better at as an industry, changing the ‘pond’ they use to search for candidates and instead following the phrase ‘for hard-to-reach people, reach harder.’ Similarly, companies need to take the time for long term succession planning, starting the recruitment process early to stop decisions being made purely based on time pressures. All of this requires leaders willing to change the rules that went before.


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Neil Carberry Neil Carberry
The Recruitment & Employment Confederation
ByJoanne Lockwood

None of us are included fully in the world until all of us are!

Stacy is a parent, actor, feminist and member of the Women's Equality Party who is passionate about intersectional feminism

Until we are free of the discrimination that comes from not looking like or being like someone else then none of us are safe and none of us are really free. The same is true for inclusion, if the world that you are in does not include everyone then it isn’t the full world, it’s a bit of the world that isn’t fully representative or a safe, happy and fair environment for everyone.

 
Published Published: 25.03.2021 Recorded Recorded: 17.03.2021 Episode Length Duration: 1:01:58 Downloads Downloads: 1175
 

Stacy is aware she has an intolerance of the intolerant and struggles to understand the opposing point of view on inclusion. To her, as well as it being the right thing to do to from a self-interest point of view, she feels it is more interesting, easier and for businesses more successful to have a diverse workforce.

Freedom of speech is protected by law up to the point where it veers into hate speech, although these checks are not perfect as neither misogyny or catcalling are currently classed as a hate crime. Freedom of speech is not about bullying, hounding people or being blatantly biased, which is a huge problem within our media and those feeding off this make up part of the problem. This bias can be seen in the way women are portrayed and the stories that make headlines; with Sarah Everard an attractive white female making the news but not black females who had disappeared around the same time. It needs to become socially unacceptable that women are vilified and often blamed for unsolicited advances and sexual assaults. We are still basing a woman’s value purely on looks and the attention they receive and the cumulative impact of being demeaned, belittled, and judged impacts on pay, work life and mental/physical health.

Many of us when challenged on our privilege try to defend ourselves but forget how fortunate we were to be born with it, having had opportunity from birth. It can be uncomfortable to realise the things you have benefited from over the years and can be hard to break down as no one is saying you didn’t work hard for them, but instead that doors others may have struggled through, would have opened immediately for you. Stacy says provided you are committed to breaking down those barriers that made others’ lives so much harder than your own, then no one is accusing you of anything and you do not need to feel defensive. Often the difference of privilege can be down to networking, learning about opportunities via the people you know, whereas others would not have known these opportunities existed, let along where to find them – something that keeps the divide constantly active.

Many people have a belief in a meritocracy and that they are the ones that did the best within it, so it can be really painful for them to be told the world they think they live in does not exist. Stacy uses UK politics as an example, asking ‘are the best people in our government and ruling the country always middle aged, wealthy white males? The voices we hear, representations in our politics are overwhelmingly the same voice and same class we have always heard.   Breaking the meritocracy undermines the society we thought we lived in and some people’s self-worth, which can be tied up in a feeling of nationalism. Our biases become almost self-fulfilling, with societies conditioning affecting us all and requiring a lot of unpicking as this starts from childhood often with stereotypical boys’ and girls’ toys/colours.


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SEE Change Happen

A huge thank you to our wonderful guest
Stacy Hart Stacy Hart
Women's Equality Party
SEE Change Happen: Transgender Awareness & Inclusion