Leading By Example.

Leading By Example.

By Julian Obubo, Partner, Manifest London

A lot of us don’t know how to talk about diversity and inclusion. It’s a sad sentence to write, but it’s true. One of the reasons for the slow pace of change in the PR industry is that most practitioners are simply not conversant with the issue and therefore retreat to the safety of silence instead of speaking up. Good intentions are great, but if they aren’t coupled with actions nothing ever changes.

One of the greatest benefits of the Blueprint initiative is its facilitation of turning good intentions into direct actions. At Manifest, we have seen how that has enabled us to bring in structures and processes that make us more accountable to our team, but importantly, we have also witnessed the halo effect on our clients and suppliers. It’s much easier to influence a client by using yourself as a case study.

“Being Blueprinted brings you into a wider family of agencies hard at work on being the change they want to see”

The Blueprint commitments have enabled us to be candid and vulnerable with clients on topics such as recruitment and nurturing talent. We share what the challenges are, where we’ve made improvements, and where we need to do a lot better, and through that vulnerability, they can see that the work of affecting real change isn’t about perfection from the start, but a desire to keep going and keep improving.

Being Blueprinted brings you into a wider family of agencies hard at work on being the change they want to see. We’ve gained so much knowledge and direction from participating in Lunchbox sessions.

Meeting the challenge of improving DEI in our industry cannot be done by one agency, it requires collective effort and collective humility. What the Blueprint provides is not just a thorough guide for implementing change, but a safe community to bounce ideas and untangle thorny topics. It has given us the ability and opportunity to lead by example. More agencies would benefit from applying and joining a family of practitioners dedicated to making a difference.