Workshop Series with Simon Fanshawe OBE

Throughout 2021 – 2022, Connex ran an important and impactful series of roundtables on allyship and diversity in the workplace, for which Simon Fanshawe OBE was a regular speaker. Our Connex 2024 Impact Report, which is being released to members in January 2024, provides a summary of this entire allyship series of roundtables, and from which a powerful message was highlighting diversity and allyship issues and ways to take positive actions to address them. Now in 2024, and in tandem with the release of this report, Connex invites Simon back to run a series of workshops looking at how our members can take the insights from our roundtable series and start to enact positive change within their workplaces. Together, we want to see those important and honest discussions turned into actions for our membership organisations.

28th February 2024, 10:00 - 12:00

Diversity Deficits and Dividends: Diversity as a Purpose rather than a Slogan

In this session, Simon Fanshawe OBE will help identify your particular diversity and allyship issues and determine how these should be addressed so you can develop an accurate, focused and specific diversity framework for your organisation to benefit staff and tenants and improve services. We will examine your current organisational deficits. What causes any imbalances between employees, and how can we tackle these without defaulting to slogans and headlines? Because if we don’t understand the problems accurately, we will never find effective solutions. We will then determine what combination of differences you need in your organisation to deliver the services your current and future tenants want and need; the dividends that you can achieve through diversity.

14th November 2024, 10:00 - 12:00

How to Achieve True Inclusion: Recognising the Variety of Voices in your Organisation

Many organisations are using diversity and inclusion as tools of conformity, causing staff and tenants to walk on eggshells rather than genuinely feel included. In this session, Simon Fanshawe OBE will suggest practical tools and processes that help managers deal positively with these situations and create real and lasting inclusion. Not the illusion of inclusion. As humans, we will cause each other as much offence as we do joy. We will be clumsy with each other. But offence is not discrimination. So, what do we want out of the processes that help us to deal with these clashes and conflicts that will inevitably arise? Do we want to ‘point and punish’ or ’talk and learn’? To create inclusion in an organisation we must first recognise the variety and range of people and opinions contained within it.


Simon Fanshawe OBE

Partner, Diversity by Design

Simon, a diversity consultant, broadcaster, and author, co-founded Diversity by Design, supporting organisations in truly diversifying their senior staff. His latest book, “The Power of Difference,” published in December 2021 by Kogan Page, was the Chartered Institute of Management’s Book of 2023. Voted the second Most Influential Thinker in 2022 by HR Magazine, he was inducted into their Hall of Fame in 2023.

He currently serves on the Board of Powerful Women and is the Chairman of Hexagon Housing Association. Previously, he chaired Sussex University, served as a non-executive director of Housing & Care 21, was a Governor of the Museum of London, and sat on the Board of Brighton Dome & Festival.

With a longstanding commitment to campaigns for equality and positive social change, Simon has served on the Boards of companies and organisations in the private and charity sectors for over thirty-five years. As a co-founder of Stonewall and the Kaleidoscope Trust, he has played a key role in advancing diversity and human rights.

Simon was honoured with an OBE in 2013 for services to Higher Education and received an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Sussex for contributions to diversity and human rights.