Inclusion

Let’s talk belonging

Lavinia Chamdal-Dohil

Inclusion Project Manager

September 28, 2020

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Belonging means acceptance as a member or part. Such a simple word for huge concept. A sense of belonging is a human need, just like the need for food and shelter – Psychology Today

I have been with Virgin Media for seven years now and have enjoyed every minute of it. I started my time within Learning & Development (L&D) working in the consumer space and sales areas. I was able to work with a variety of people and my passion for developing and watching them grow from induction into the wider business was what I loved the most.

Over the years I was faced with different situations ranging from different learning styles, neurodiversity within learning and helping our people grow to where they wanted to be and supporting them to do so.

My role in L&D meant that I found people would naturally come to speak to me more often about any worries they had, ask for advice around difficult conversations or how they could progress within their career. It allowed me to take a keen interest in growing our female talent and underrepresented ethnic minorities within the sales environment as well as reaching out to learn more around how I could help achieve this in the best possible way.

When the role of Inclusion Project Manager came up I jumped at the opportunity. I felt that this was my chance to be involved in the wider business to help drive the belonging strategy. With my understanding of our people who are on the front line and my determination to help drive change within Virgin Media, I knew I could help embed our belonging strategy and add a different point of view.

I’ve been working closely with our network groups: Ultraviolet, (disability) network, Neurodiversity network, Gender Equality network, Empower, (our underrepresented ethnic minorities) network and our LGBTQ+ & Friends network, and I have learnt so much from their personal stories and how as a collective we can make a real difference within Virgin Media for both employees and customers. We are looking at expanding the networks and helping people to understand how we can all make change happen, how to become an ally and ensure everyone feels that sense of belonging.

I’ve been in my current role now for just a few weeks and it’s really educated me and opened my eyes to how much we have done as a business so far and how much work still needs to be done. We are on this journey and it’s so important to continuously challenge our own thinking and ask questions.

The importance of driving awareness of all areas of inclusion isn’t an easy feat but it’s one that so many of us are working hard each day to make happen.

We’ve launched so many amazing initiatives and right now, during National Inclusion Week, we are continuing to challenge ourselves but also support and educate Virgin Media employees around the importance of belonging and inclusivity.

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