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Diversity Summit 2018

Diversity Summit 2018

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Diversity summit 2018

From left to right: Avanti & Leo Sharma, Gabriela Tennhard (KPMG), Colette Flesch, Caroline Mohr, Kholoud Mousa (KPMG Saudi Arabia)

Female pioneers: Igniting the forces of diversity and inclusion

Luxembourg, Luxembourg – 2 October 2018 –
On Thursday 20 September, KPMG Luxembourg played host to an inspiring panel discussion with pioneering speakers who have demonstrated courage to lead against the odds, striving to build a more diverse, inclusive, and multicultural professional world.

Alison Macleod, Partner and head of Inclusion and Diversity at KPMG Luxembourg, emphasized the relevance of the topic saying, “the need for diversity and inclusion in the workplace at an international level has been well documented, with momentum gathering around the topic in recent years. Pioneers have been the driving force behind this change, leading the way towards progress in spite of the challenges they may face.”

The panel of the Diversity Summit faced a variety of trials, from gender based discrimination in the workplace to losing a leg as a professional sportsperson. So what makes a pioneer rise above these obstacles? Is this fearlessness innate or does it arise from circumstance? The answer is a combination of both, according to the panel.

One of the panelists for the evening was Colette Flesch, Luxembourg's first female Foreign Minister, Deputy Prime Minister, Mayor, and Olympic Fencer. A true pioneer, she told the story of when, back in the 1960s she applied for the Luxembourg Foreign Service twice, and was rejected both times, later finding out that this was because she was a woman.

Attendees also heard from Kholoud Mousa, the first female in Saudi Arabia to become Partner in a professional service firm, Caroline Mohr, a Swedish pro-golfer who pursued her professional golfing dream and succeeded both before and after having her leg amputated and Avanti & Leo Sharma, 11 and 16-year-old coding prodigies from India and Luxembourg.

Over the course of the evening the panel tackled topics such as fear, change and the power of mindset. The power of positivity in the face of obstacles defined the conversation and demonstrated the different ways in which mindset can help in overcoming barriers in both a personal and professional setting.

Philippe Meyer, Managing Partner of KPMG Luxembourg praised the panel saying, “We are delighted to have had the opportunity to hear from this group of trailblazers who have strived for excellence, no matter what their circumstances or the obstacles that have come their way. Leading by example is a trait we seek in KPMG people and the panel of pioneers we heard from are certainly a great representation of leading by example and striving for excellence, no matter what the circumstances may be.”

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