Diversity – It’s not a Gender Agenda!

She hopefully won’t mind me saying this but I took my initial learning and inspiration for focusing on diversity and inclusivity throughout my resourcing career from the most amazing Group Head of Diversity, Theresa White of G4S.

Diversity was an automatic element of everything that G4S did whilst I was there, and I remember clearly a leadership diversity focused meeting at Group where Theresa made us all feel comfortable to say whatever came into our heads, as there was some apprehension from us newbies to the subject surrounding inadvertently saying the wrong thing during conversation.

To open our minds to the full diversity experience Theresa instilled in us the notion that ‘Diversity is not a gender agenda’ and that all difference was good and should be celebrated and incorporated at all times.

I was reminded of this during a Facebook conversation this week with some industry chums as I played back an experience I had when I was on an external panel discussion and afterwards someone quipped that the panel wasn’t very diverse.

Yes on the face of things there were three white blokes, who even with the best makeup artist couldn’t look young again, so we fitted the stereotypical pale, stale, male group, however, one was in his seventies, another was gay and I have a mental illness, OCD.

So in reality it was a very diverse panel, but aesthetically, you could understand why we were called out as being the opposite.

A question bounced around my head whilst mowing the lawns this morning and I just had to write it down. So just how diverse are our workforces?

Do we really know what diverse groups our employees enjoy belonging to? Some are quite naturally easy to recognise, but the more private and sensitive, e.g. mental ill health, where many don’t want to disclose, could account for so many more belonging to a diverse group and therefore enriching the real percentage scoring of diversity across the organisation.

And back to the pale, stale, male stereotype. Has anyone else thought that as more and more are comfortable discussing their diverse group membership, especially people with mental ill health (yes I do think this is a diverse group), are people that fall into this category and absolutely no other, ultimately going to fall into a future minority and diverse group that will need to be surrounded by a support and campaign environment, where members are championed for the difference they can still bring to our ultra-diverse world?

Happy Bank Holiday (UK) everyone, and do get in touch if I can support with any of your diverse hiring, or mental health initiatives.


How I would have approached GDPR

I’m fascinated by the GDPR debate, where some are suggesting recruitment and HR functions need to assume full responsibility and become experts, and others are suggesting there’s too much hype surrounding the subject.

So I wanted to share how I would have approached it if I was still the Group Head of Resourcing and HR Systems for the world’s second largest private employer, just in case it supports the conversation.

As soon as I had learned about GDPR legislation I would have walked out of my office, turned right, walked approximately 30 paces into Group Legal, knocked on the door of the Group Legal Counsel responsible for global data protection legislation for the entire organisation, and I would have asked her for her timescales for being able to brief me on what I needed to know and learn about it, and evolve and change across my areas of responsibility.

She would probably then tell me that she was still in the process of assessing the impact and specific risk to the organisation as a whole, which when finished would trigger the production of a bespoke set of aligned guidelines and critical activities for the organisation, backed up by one to one support from Group Legal to help manage any implications and changes across all functions.

I would have then gone back to my team, briefed them, then carried on delivering the things I was ultimately responsible for. Over the following months I would have continued to take my lead from her, the guardian and expert of best practice data protection legislation from within my organisation.

Granted, yes, I would have needed a healthy level of understanding of GDPR, which would have grown over time, driven by Group Legal, but I wouldn’t have needed to be educated and trained to the level of a person with ultimate responsibility, unless of course I had ultimate responsibility.

It’s everyone responsibility to know about GPPR and support the implementation of the correct systems and procedures, but it’s probably just one person’s responsibility to own it, and if that’s not you, then I would leave it to them to guide and educate you!

All the very best.


Resilience – That’s twice now!!!

My wonderful recent meeting with Charles Walker OBE MP at Parliament, has just converged with my speaking and chairing engagement at Roffey Park Institute’s 70th anniversary event tomorrow, where I will give the HERO Mental Health Readiness Model a great airing.

Charles said he loved the model and that it should evolve further and incorporate resilience as a follow up! Roffey Park Institute, one of the world’s renowned leadership institutes, has produced the Resilience Capability Index (RCI) – http://www.roffeypark.com/resilience-capability-index. That’s twice now!

The world is changing faster than ever and I personally think we have crossed the rubicon where change in general happens faster than our ability to adapt. Think about the political changes in the world lately. Relatively overnight, we have seen demonstrable change in the UK and USA political landscape, with what looks like more examples to follow (eek).

Then look at our reaction to it. It’s one of 50% resistance and a lack of desire to accept it and adapt. It’s also one of 50% anger and demonstration. You still see examples of this every day across traditional and social media. The debate rages on!

I’m not saying that’s a bad thing or wrong, but I predict before mainstream acceptance has happened to these seismic events (whatever that looks like) something massive and related would have changed again. The pace of change in life is just too fast. Look at tech as well! No sooner have you bought something, version (OMG my version is now old) 2 comes along! We just gotta accept more and more change because you blink and you miss the next one.

The continued and seemingly elevating outcry following change, and compulsion to get involved in the debate (quietly points the finger at social media here) by many is a huge source of distraction and potentially stress. That’s not good for personal or professional lives or human and business productivity!

So my point is this. If events like ‘Brump’, that’s Brexit and Trump combined, were accepted quicker by those/us that voted against them, would they/we be less distracted, less compelled to argue against it and less stressed.

In my own world I say yes. My immediate reaction to my initial reaction to these things, to keep my stress levels in check, is to try to accept things as quickly as possible and move on. Not easy but it’s something I am now conditioned to do because the alternative feeds my illness. Does that then make me more resilient than others? If so another positive for having OCD!

Finally, resilience must therefore be a state of mind; well for me it is. I consciously practice resilience as one of my remedies, along with exercise, distraction, CBT, not drinking alcohol (that’s a lie sorry) and by living as healthily as possible. You can apply a reaction to a reaction, and if its a positive to counter a negative, e.g. being resilient, eventually it becomes habitual. Arguably a good habit to acquire! I have a few.

All the best.

Colin – +44 (0)7887 480142 – colin.minto@bigideatalent.com – Join the Mental Health in Business Group

The Six Pillar Talent Lifecycle – Demand – Service Delivery Model / Team

Six Pillar Talent Lifecycle - Demand - Service Delivery Model Team

Once the Needs / Planning activities have been completed, this actually falls into place.

You know the skill and personality set of those that will excel in every role across the business.

You know when, where and in what volumes you need them, to operate your business to the level expected by your stakeholders.

You also know how many resources and recruiters you need to meet demands based on previous best practice performance data or industry standards.

Your decisions are naturally driven by this knowledge and also influenced by the following:

What do your target audiences want and expect?

Some might think this a little strange to lead with, however I believe the jobs you are promoting are actually products that need to be marketed. The first rule of marketing (well for me anyway) is to understand what your customers want from your product, service and you!

So if the most important future asset to your business wants to be processed online and interviewed face to face in the place they will be working, well, you know what I am going to say next!

If however, they are happy, and expect, to be interviewed over Skype, then, well, you know what I am going to say next.

There are some amazing research and candidate experience organisations that can tell you this for your audiences, or you could of course just ask them yourself. Ask those who have recently joined your business across a spectrum of your roles, but don’t be surprised if their preferences don’t match with your existing approach!

How are your locations positioned?

If you have five locations with 10,000 people working at each, then you could choose to set up a resourcing team at each location. If you have 500 locations with two people working at each then you could choose to set up a central or regional team, with remote interviewers, or a technological solution potentially involving video interviewing!

All very logical if you have done a good job with the Needs / Planning activity.


You will of course be driven by your technology strategy, which some would also describe as an efficiency or cost driving initiative. Just make sure that the optimum candidate and recruitment experience you need to deliver can be facilitated by your technology. I’m an advocate of automation but not when it’s at the expense of resourcing effectively.

The Data Difference

We hear a lot of noise about data and here is a good example of its use. If you can interrogate your systems and data to match the high performers in your business to the service delivery model that processed them, plus the end to end processes you took them through (including how they are managed but more on this later) to bring them on board, you can learn from this and replicate.

We will go into data in greater detail later in the series but one challenge some will face is the capability of their systems. If you don’t have the data because you don’t have the technology, get in touch as we can help you with this.

The Team

Just as you have mapped the skills, experience and personality set for your critical target audiences, you need to do this to identify the optimum resourcers and recruiters to manage and deliver the recruitment experience. You will obviously be focusing on people who have demonstrated excellence in recruiting your target audiences previously, or display the potential to do so.

Remember the offer is always there if you want to chat this, or other HR challenges, through with a Big Idea Talent Associate.

All the best. JD’s from the Demand Pillar is next up and coming soon…..


Welcome to Big Idea Talent

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Let me take this opportunity to welcome you to the Big Idea Talent blog and community.

Big Idea Talent is a specialist management consultancy, focussing on grounded resourcing, HR and HR technology strategy and delivery support.

We support senior HR and Resourcing leaders to realise the potential of their strategies and initiatives!

To find out how we could best support you now or in the future, please don’t hesitate to Contact Us!

Colin – Founder