Diverse Finance LIVE

Sessions available here on demand

In these uncertain times, it is more important than ever to review your Diversity & Inclusion strategy, improve your operations, strive for equality, and strengthen your business for the future.

Diversity in the workplace is essential for increasing productivity and innovation, which in turn contributes to better business performance and growth.

  • Join in the discussion with those leading the industry on Equality, Diversity & Inclusion in the finance industry

  • Gain inspiration from others’ activities in the diversity sphere

  • Define and shape your own D&I strategy to benefit your business’ productivity long-term

  • Enable your company to stand out as a company really worth being a part of!

  • Discover key strategies to integrate high values into the fabric of business life.

Our speakers

Diverse Finance LIVE featured a valuable mix of presentations and panel discussions on the latest D&I issues, delivered by some of the Finance Industry’s most prominent thinkers on Diversity, Equality & Inclusion:


Zaheer Ahmad MBE JP

Head of Strategic Delivery – Diversity & Inclusiveness, EY (UK&I)

Sabina Khanom

Sabina Khanom

Head of Inclusion, Aviva

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Leng Montgomery

Diversity & Inclusion Manager, BDO UK 

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Babu Maya

Technical Team Leader & ENRICH Network Lead, Allianz 


Marianne Cowie

Commercial Property Underwriter & Chair of Zurich Pride UK, Zurich


Kasia Zduniak

Inclusion & Diversity Consultant, Aegon UK

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Guinevere Taylor

Director, EMEA Distribution, RBC Global Asset Management

bhavik pancholi

Bhavik Pancholi

Diversity & Inclusion Activist

Our Partners

Thank you to all our partners:


Missed the event? Access the sessions On Demand.

Discover practical strategies and case studies to increase diversity and inclusion in the workforce

In the finance sector, many companies have declared their commitment to diversity and inclusion. However, a 2019 survey by PwC showed that organisations are struggling to translate D&I strategies into action and to make a real impact on the employee experience.

The survey found that 80 percent of organisations state D&I is a value or priority area, but 39 percent of respondents still feel diversity is a barrier to career progression. While more than half of the organisations surveyed leverage their D&I programme to attract talent or comply with legal requirements, a much smaller number are leveraging D&I to achieve business results, and they are not using their affinity groups to inform decision-making or to drive business priorities.

Measuring success also appears to be a widespread issue. Less than a third of organisations surveyed are tasking their leaders with specific D&I goals, and even fewer are measuring progress towards achievement of these goals.

Having committed to D&I and published their strategies, finance companies must now focus on implementing them, creating a clear action plan and putting robust measurement mechanisms in place.

By doing so, the sector can ensure that it appeals to the next generation of talent, particularly from underrepresented groups. With a more diverse workforce, supported by a truly inclusive culture, finance companies will benefit from the commercial advantages of a diverse workforce, such as better innovation, customer experiences and staff retention.

Improving diversity is essential for increasing productivity and innovation, which in turn contributes to better business performance and growth.

Click below to access Diverse Finance LIVE on demand.

5 reasons to attend:

  1. Hear case studies from companies leading the way in D&I

  2. Free of charge for all

  3. No travel necessary – join from your home office!

  4. Opportunity to learn, plan and share best practice

  5. Access the content on-demand and watch in your own time

Diverse Finance LIVE  |  Main Agenda

Wednesday 29th July 2020

12:00 BST   EY’s Differential Focus on Race

In this opening session, Zaheer Ahmad MBE JP will discuss:

  • What does differential focus mean to us?
  • Our public target of 20% on BAME partnership by 2025
  • Some of the steps EY will take to reach this target and the challenges and opportunities
  • EY’s response to BLM – internal activities and our commitments
  • The role of Race Fluency and Allyship training in enabling all colleagues to develop a deeper understanding and appreciation of the topic of race

Zaheer Ahmad MBE JP, Head of Strategic Delivery for D&I, EY (UK&I)

13:00 BST   Interview with Head of Inclusion at Aviva, Sabina Khanom

Join us as we chat to Sabina Khanom about:

  • Creating an inclusive culture in an international organisation
  • How Aviva’s in-house specialist Women in Leadership Development Programme will help them to achieve their goal of increasing the number of women in leadership roles to 40% by 2021
  • The steps being taken to attract, promote and retain more ethnic minority employees, and how partnerships and bespoke leadership programmes can play a part
  • The positive work being done through Aviva Communities – global employee groups – to embed an inclusive culture and contribute to the long-term success of D&I strategies

Sabina Khanom, Head of Inclusion, Aviva

14:00 BST   Fireside Chat with Diversity & Inclusion Manager at BDO UK, Leng Montgomery

Join us as we chat to Leng Montgomery about:

  • Gender identity – the challenges that still exist in the sector and the steps we can take to address it
  • The importance of recognising intersectionality and hidden diversity to make your organisation more inclusive
  • Creating a supportive and welcoming culture for LGBTQ+ employees – proactive planning vs reacting on a case-by-case basis
  • What does inclusion really look like and how can we measure progress?

Leng Montgomery, Diversity & Inclusion Manager, BDO UK

15:00 BST   Creating Inclusive Workplaces

Join us as we chat to Kathryn Knowles, Managing Director of Cura, about:
  • The reasons why Kathryn set up the company and why Cura’s values and employee-focused approach are so important
  • Ways in which Cura has created a supportive, flexible workplace for parents and individuals with physical or mental health conditions
  • The importance of recognising disabilities and medical conditions – whether visible or hidden – and the proactive steps you can take to ensure your workforce is supported
  • The long-term impact of the pandemic on attitudes towards flexible working
  • How organisations can make small adaptations to ensure the workplace is inclusive for all and suits the individual employee

Kathryn Knowles, Managing Director, Cura

16:00 BST   Panel Discussion: Active Steps to Create an Inclusive Culture

  • Progress made so far and insights from companies championing inclusivity
  • How to ensure this topic is kept high on the agenda in the post-pandemic world
  • Are there tangible barriers to entry and progression for underrepresented groups within the sector, or is this slowly shifting?
  • How can we encourage greater inclusion and support for diverse talent?

Kasia Zduniak, Inclusion & Diversity Consultant, Aegon UK

Babu Maya, Technical Team Leader & ENRICH Network Lead, Allianz Insurance

Guinevere Taylor, Director, EMEA Distribution, RBC Global Asset Management

Bhavik Pancholi, Diversity & Inclusion Activist

Marianne Cowie, Commercial Property Underwriter & Chair of Zurich Pride UK, Zurich Insurance

What you will learn

At Diverse Finance LIVE, discover how to:


  • Enhance business resilience and performance with increased diversity

  • Attract and retain a higher percentage of diverse talent

  • Build an outreach program to encourage young people into the sector

  • Address unconscious bias in the hiring process

  • Increase diversity and inclusion in practice within every element of the employee lifecycle

  • Improve your benefits and policies to make them truly inclusive

  • Instill a mentoring culture within your company

Who should attend?

  • CxOs, Directors and Department Heads looking to encourage greater diversity and representation in their workplace

  • Progressive employees looking to align their own organisation with more inclusive values

  • D&I and Human Resources staff looking to grow a dynamic and energised workforce team, where employees can be truly proud of the place where they work

  • Champions of change who are keen to learn from prominent Finance Sector professionals on the frontline of change

  • All who want to help the Finance Industry evolve to include a wider, more inclusive workforce

Diversity Network
Crowd at concert
Business people working, brainstorming as a team at the office
Unrecognizable man sitting at the desk working from home on computer and smart phone
Group of diverse business people having a meeting together
Smiling young businesswoman and her diverse team brainstorming ideas with sticky notes on a glass wall while working together in a modern office

Our attendees include:

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