What an amazing conversation we had the other night with three amazing women dn their thoughts on diverse set of skills.
We were pleased to welcome
- Nadine Wiegratz, StepStoneGmbH, Employer Branding Lead
- Laureen Roesch-Ahrens, trivago, Diversity & Inclusion
- Alison Benjatschek, UniperSE, Talent Acquisition Manager
Part 1: We want to get to know you better, and hear something about your experience
Alison is British but living in Germany and she has a passion and interest in diversity especially disabilities. Nadine is half British and half German. She discussed the idea that you are always German in the UK and Births in Germany, always the “other”. Nadine is French and has the belief that we can do so much more together.
Part 2: Diversity and Inclusion with focus on “teams with a diverse set of skills”
Alison discussed the ideas around affinity bias and how people recruit people just “like me”. It feels safe hiring similar people but if you look under the surface, people like you can be very different. There are tools to help the selection process such as diverse interviewers, search for talent across age, race, sex and role play in the assessment can help.
Nadine has seen 10+years and in that time seen a big ups skill in recruiters. This is about challenging the hiring managers to think differently. She discussed the Blind Auditions for Orchestras. Blind CVs in Germany still have a way to go.
Laureen suggests reflecting on our own group of friends. We tend towards similarities with people. How can I become more aware? Focus on case studies in interviews – therefore people can show how they really work.
What’s the best mix of skills for a team? Do you have a perfect formula?
Nadine suggested that in a rock band you don’t have 5 drummers. If you want a good song, you need different things. Be the Rolling Stones!
Alison suggested that the strength of 3 is a good rule to have. 3 people who can do strategy, 3 people who can do marketing, 3 people who can keep the team together. That covers all your bases if there is an absence
What are the Skills needs for 2025?
Alison agreed that when you are applying to businesses – your CV needs to show these transferable skills in flexibility and team work. You should be strategic about what operational skills you grow next. If you are too busy doing the day job, you are not growing.
Nadine said that you should show your refections and learnings. Set back are skills to share if you learn and adapt. Back it up with data on your CV. You’re not bragging if it’s based on facts!
Part 3: Challenges and opportunities for this type of diversity
Nadine describer the cultural differences in problem solving in the Netherlands vs Germany or the UK. There are biases based on women, culture, race etc. Lauren agreed and you need to create an atmosphere to share. Are we inviting everyone to speak? Support people to getting to know each other and offer training on culture and collaborations to learn the skills other people can share.
Alison discussed job sharing and the time commitments to good communication between job sharing partners. *side note, iwibdus will have a job sharing workshop in November – keep an eye out for events.
How do we help these? Laureen agreed on the job sharing ideas and they need to be pushed more. Alison thought it would only get better when parenting is truly maternal and paternal leave sharing.
Part 4: Quick fire thoughts
My definition of problem solving: negotiating German bureaucracy without speaking native German!Nadine
My biggest learning working with teams with a diverse set of skills is…
Nadine: You always win
My biggest challenge working with teams with a diverse set of skills is…
Laureen: Vulnerability. Accept others are more skilled than you
Nadine: Being pushed out of your comfort zone.
Diverse set of skills bring to teams….
My final message for this audience tonight is regarding this topic…
Alison: Stay diverse. Have fun!
Laureen: No skille better than others, its what you mix it with
Nadine: Embrace Diversity
Thank you to our speaker and how much they answered the questions from our attendees.
If you would like to be a mentor please see the latest blog post from iwibdus or if you would like to be part of our speaker series, please contact us