Insurers around Australia are taking part in Dive In Festival, a global diversity and inclusion initiative from Lloyd’s aimed at tackling unconscious bias and lack of diversity.
Dive In events are being held this week in Sydney, Melbourne and Perth, with each event addressing a particular challenge, such as the Melbourne event exploring unconscious bias.
Lloyd’s said in a statement that unconscious bias, the “natural preference” people hold for those who look and act similarly to themselves, is more widespread than prejudice and can affect the way a business operates.
“Unconscious bias is extremely powerful and often means we are more likely to employ people like us,” said Lloyd's general representative in Australia Chris Mackinnon.
“But teams of mixed gender, ethnicity, age and sexual orientation are more representative of the diverse customers we serve. Diversity can deliver dividends and we risk losing business if we don’t address it.”
According to Mr Mackinnon, Melbourne’s GDP could receive an additional $8 billion over the next 10 years if disability discrimination is addressed, and if workforce participation rates for women reached those for men, 140,000 women would join the workforce.
The Dive In events commenced on 26 September, and will conclude on 28 September.