'Drunken rant' | Deloitte Vice Chairman's offensive comments are at odds with firm's D&I success

Deloitte Vice Chairman's offensive comments are at odds with firm's D&I success

Inclusion and diversity are a must for all businesses. Certainly, some companies top others with their D&I success rates. In fact, Deloitte ranked as the first of the most racially diverse of the Big Four accounting firms in the US workforce...

The Big Four of Deloitte, Ernst & Young, KPMG and PwC are topping charts these days in terms of an inclusive and diverse workforce.

According to the 2022 Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Transparency Report of Deloitte, 42% of its now 80,000 US employee workforce identify their race as other than white.

Deloitte also reports that since FY2021, they have increased by a 2.4 % point in their overall racial and ethnic diversity in terms of their workforce.

The Deloitte reports state that they ask their employees for their ethnicity and race independently.

Progress is too slow

Yes, these changes are empowering and progress is in the right direction.

On the other hand, is it enough?

Deloitte has recognised that they need enhance and promote its diversity and inclusivity rates further and make a positive change for its employees.

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As a result, they launched and founded a movement under the name of: Change the Race Ratio. This movement is founded by Deloitte and other organisations, such as: Unilever, Microsoft, EY, Aviva and more.

Aiming with the goal of improving racial and ethnic participation among senior leadership teams and businesses.

Karen Remus Miller, the DEI Consultant at PWN Zug & Zurich, expresses her thoughts in line with this movement: “Important, but only half the task, if you want to keep them you need to ensure a safe environment and inclusive company culture.”

Miller’s statements are very true because it’s advocating at a starting point, but overlooking the whole picture.

Practice what you preach

Deloitte’s former Vice-Chairman, Stephen Cahill, caused controversy recently after going on a drunken rant in which he made various sexist, racist and generally offensive comments.

As Shoaib Baig, a C-Level Executive, commented: “Unethical behaviours go unpunished even at big self-proclaimed ‘ethical’ corporations.”

Nicki Eyre, the Founder and Managing Director of Conduct Change, also expressed her concerns with this matter, saying: “What will it take for businesses to be brave enough to hold people truly accountable for their behaviour - at every level?”

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It’s ironic, to say the least.

Surely, an individual that works for a company such as Deloitte and who advocates to the extent to launch a movement for racial equity shouldn’t employ this type or any other type of discrimination.

Deloitte does have a zero-tolerance policy, and Cahill swiftly announced his exit from the firm after 14 years, following news of his actions.

What this all means for businesses

First of all, it’s of uttermost importance for businesses to push for equality and anti-discrimination policies within the workplace that applies to all levels of work.

It’s crucial for both employees and employers to be safe and have wellbeing measures put into effect as well.

Zero-tolerance policies shouldn’t be implemented with bias or favouritism.

Overall, businesses should be an environment that implements what they say, whether it be their ethos, mission, vision and more.

Comments (1)

  • Kris
    Thu, 20 Oct 2022 4:00pm EDT
    Unreal that someone at that level with such a large organization would go on a rant with that kind of offensive language, let alone have those thoughts at all. He made his own bed. Good riddance.

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