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Thursday 08 June, 2017


Be Bold For Change: Diversity at CCEP

sol

Last week, our GB Women’s Network hosted the latest in a series of external events designed to bring women together to discuss diversity and inclusion at work. This is just one of the diversity groups we have across Coca-Cola European Partners.

It was fascinating to hear from our guest speaker, Dragons' Den entrepreneur Deborah Meaden about her experiences, the challenges she has faced and how she overcame them.

Many successful men and women in the audience also shared their own stories and concerns. It was clear that while diversity and inclusion was important to everyone, it is still an area where companies struggle to make progress and real barriers still exist.

Participating in this event was a priority for me. I firmly believe in empowering women – and people from any background underrepresented in the business world – to succeed and grow.

To me, this just makes good business sense.

Diversity is crucial to business performance and companies with diverse management teams enjoy better financial performance and are better able to recover and adapt to changes in the market.

We need to deeply understand who is buying our products. Employing people who reflect the communities we live in, the customers we serve and the people who buy and enjoy our drinks is the best way of doing that.

But it is also about values – giving everyone an equal chance of development and progression is a core value for our business.

I am passionate about getting more women into business leadership and making sure they are able to progress, improve and grow. I was lucky to have an incredible business mentor in my father. He taught me the importance of effort, hard work, sacrifice, courage and determination. These are values that still define how I think and act today.

I’ve had to be persistent and it is often when things are hardest that I’ve learnt the most. These moments are usually the launch pad for something great.

You won’t always get it right, but I view my career like being in permanent training – I try and soak up all the lessons, new ideas and new ways of doing things as I go.

I am proud of the work CCEP has done on diversity and inclusion, but I believe we can be bolder and do more. A first step would be improving the way we measure ourselves. We can’t simply rely on averages. We need to understand how diverse we are at every level of the business, in every function and in every country.

We are working on a new plan for diversity and inclusion, which will be published later this year. I want us to dramatically increase the number of female managers and leaders, strengthen mentoring and do a better job at tracking high potential female talent.

Creating a diverse and inclusive workplace is at the forefront of my focus for the business and I would encourage you, as I did the audience last week, to be bold for change.

Sol Daurella

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