A diverse board is one which is able to recognise and fully engage with the diversity of views around the table.
This is according to a March 2018 report and guidance by the NHS Workforce Race Equality Standard on how to create a diverse board.
The national average of BME board membership is about 8%. This compares unfavorably to the representation of BME people in the NHS workforce as a whole – currently 17%.
But this paper defines diversity in terms of values, rather than identity. This goes beyond representation, because it claims that changing the demographics is not enough to achieve diversity.
A board that truly values diversity upholds the following principles:
- Awareness of bias
- Shared decision-making
- Modelling behaviour
- Being ok with conflict
The report also includes a discussion about unconscious bias and how to overcome it.
brap, who co-authored the paper, are writing a series of blogs on how to make diversity part of the fabric of your organisation. The latest entries are: ‘Why do diverse teams matter?‘ and ‘How can we truly value diversity?‘