In order to express our support to the Black Lives Matter movement and because diversity and inclusiveness are part of our core values, Whyte Corporate Affairs temporarily changed its name to Black. A symbolic action which gained us as much criticism as it gained us support.
Because we realise that we are part of the diversity problem and even more so because we want to work together towards a solution, we dared to take it a step further. Diversity and inclusion, in its broadest sense (regarding ethno-cultural origin, gender, sexual orientation, worldview, etc.), are part of our DNA at Whyte. On the one hand, we are able to share a multitude of successful cases and examples of how Whyte has a place for women, the LGBTQ community, the Flemish and French-speaking community … On the other hand, we do admit that we still struggle when it comes to recruiting people that are part of ethno-cultural minorities.
That is precisely why we are working on making ourselves better known as an inclusive employer by approaching candidates in alternative ways, by drawing up our job offers differently … Our internal taskforce is there to ensure that we continue to improve on a daily basis, so that we as a company and as human beings can continue to grow and continue to take active steps.
With “Black” we intended to open the debate on these issues and we certainly managed to do so. We received support but also criticism from different angles which sometimes got very personal. When a well-intended action polarises in such a way, it clearly illustrates the need for a thorough debate. It’s not OK when people or companies are being frightened into not taking sincere initiatives because some critical voices incorrectly accuse them of being far too progressive or of using such an initiative for personal gain. We do not intend to be silenced and will continue to be open to any constructive dialogue which can help us to reinforce our commitment.