Insurance professionals call for change in firms' culture to boost diversity

Lucy White
Investitures at Buckingham Palace
Jonny Benjamin and Neil Laybourn will be speaking about mental health awareness at Dive In's third annual festival (Source: Getty)

Professionals in the insurance industry believe workplace culture needs to change to attract and retain top talent, according to a new survey from insurance diversity festival Dive In.

Almost three quarters, or 71 per cent, of insurance professionals surveyed from around the globe said that the environment in firms must become more inclusive.

The UK ranked mental health as the area needing most work in terms of building openness, while inclusivity for those with disabilities came second and advancing diversity in sexual orientation and gender orientation came third.

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“Building a diverse, dynamic workforce is critical for the global insurance market to enable us to remain relevant in a rapidly changing world,” said Nicolas Aubert, chair of insurance body the London Market Group.

Inga Beale, chief executive of Lloyd’s of London, added: “The insurance sector is working hard to address its culture. We have made a lot of progress and, although we have more work to do, we are uniting across the insurance world to attract and retain a diverse workforce.”

Dive In surveyed more than 2,800 respondents from 150 firms in 17 countries, who are attending the third annual Dive In festival.

The festival is themed around the “diversity dividend”, focusing on the bottom line business benefits which a diverse workforce can bring to organisations and the role an inclusive culture can play in driving productivity and innovation in the sector.

Read more: Are London companies leading the way on diversity?

Jonny Benjamin and Neil Laybourn, who have campaigned for mental health awareness since Laybourn talked Benjamin out of a suicide attempt on Waterloo Bridge, will speak at the festival.

Military veteran Chris Moon, boxing manager and transgender rights activist Kellie Maloney and acid attack survivor Katie Piper will give talks on overcoming adversity, and New Zealand rugby player Bill Bush, England footballer Graeme Le Saux and rugby player Keegan Hirst on diversity in sport.

Dive In's festival will take place from 26 to 28 September, with events in London, New York City, Zurich, Sydney, Bermuda, Beijing, Glasgow, Johannesburg, Madrid, Miami, San Francisco, Perth and Sao Paolo.

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