Sony Music backs the BBC’s Creative Allies initiative
Sony Music has joined forces with the BBC’s Creative Diversity Unit in support of their Creative Allies Initiative, which unites organisations inside and outside the creative industry to promote the concept of allyship.
Jason Iley, Chairman & CEO, Sony Music UK & Ireland, joins Tim Davie, Director-General of the BBC, in signing up as a Creative Ally Champion alongside other leaders from across business, media, fashion and the arts.
“At Sony Music we are dedicated to being the most diverse and inclusive company we can be,” said Iley. “We represent artists from all corners of society and it’s essential that our business reflects that. This is a welcome initiative to galvanize support and I’m proud to pledge my commitment as an ally.”
All the Creative Ally Champions have pledged to develop the next generation of creative leaders from backgrounds that are currently underrepresented in their organisations, including:
- Black, Asian and Minority ethnic talent
- Disabled talent
- Talent from low-income backgrounds
They have pledged to demonstrating this commitment to inclusion through the promotion of allyship, which is where people – at any level in an organisation – can support colleagues who may have had fewer advantages than them in life. The ambition is that many more leaders within the creative industry and beyond will also sign up as allies.
“I am delighted that so many leaders have come on board to support our Creative Allies initiative,” said June Sarpong, Director of Creative Diversity at the BBC. “Throughout my own career I have been lucky to find support from allies within my industry – it’s important that those with the most agency use that position to help level the playing field for diverse talent, we look forward to more organisations joining us.”
To support the Creative Ally Champions the BBC Academy, in association with the USC Annenberg Inclusion Initiative, led by Dr. Stacy L. Smith, has created The Ally Track – a free online education tool, which organisations and the public can use via the BBC Creative Diversity website. All of the Creative Ally Champions have committed to the use of the tool within their organisations.
The Ally Tool helps the user think about their own background and how different experiences can lead to advantages and disadvantages in the workplace. It can also be used to identify an individual’s strengths and suggest how they might display allyship at their work. Based on Karen Catlin’s ‘Better Allies’ process, the tool sets out seven types of ally – sponsor, champion, advocate, amplifier, scholar, upstander and confident. Users are invited to choose which type of ally they would like to be personally. Over a month the tool will then give practical exercises, tips and best practice on how to be that ally.
“Changing the culture at an organisation needs to start at the top,” said Tim Davie, Director-General of the BBC. “I am proud that we are helping to bring together people from across our industry who have the power to promote diversity and inclusion – we all want to find new ways of working that help build a truly inclusive and diverse culture in our organisations. I am delighted that so many of our partners have already signed up as Creative Allies – we hope that many more will join us.”