5 minutes with... Tanisha Singla | Inclusive Employers

5 minutes with… Tanisha Singla

'5 minutes with...' is our interview series that gives you the opportunity to learn more about the Inclusive Employers team and other I&D professionals who are working to make inclusion a reality every day.

Here we learn more about Tanisha Singla, Senior Inclusion and Diversity Consultant at Inclusive Employers.

1) Can you tell us how you came to be in your role?

My journey to equalities was not a straightforward one like many others. In my final year at university, I decided it was time to figure out what I should be doing with my life.

I booked an appointment with the careers team and they sent over a test. The top result was Equality, Diversity and Inclusion specialist. I remember thinking that sounds dull!

How wrong I was. I think the description said something about being a HR professional and it thoroughly switched me off. I had never heard of an EDI specialist and having just finished a history degree I was keen to explore my options as a teacher. And I forgot about this experience for many years.

Fast forward a few years as a teaching assistant and I enrolled on a part-time master’s in Race and Resistance. From that point, I never left education I spent a number of years working in widening participation at university and then found myself in a role as a Project Manager at a college.

EDI was one of my responsibilities and it was there that I found my calling and remembered that careers test I did back in 2011! I always used to think those tests were pointless and look at where I ended up!

I had worked with Inclusive Employers previously and always kept an eye on what they were doing. When the opportunity came up I felt like I had to give it a shot!

2) Can you share an ‘inclusion moment’ with us – a time when you have felt included either at work or in your personal life?

Not to bring the tone to a sad one but during my working life, I have lost lots of close family members, and lots in close succession of each other.

I have been really lucky to have amazing line managers who understood the cultural and religious differences during this time period and the responsibilities I had to fulfil during these times with no questions asked.

It really helped in a difficult time which could have been so much more difficult if my line managers were not who they were. So a massive thank you to them!

3) What do you love most about your role?

The variety! I love hearing about what all of our members are doing on their inclusion journey. The team here are also amazing! It’s so great to work with so many specialists and learn from them.

4) What is a typical day like for you?

What I have learnt is no day is ever the same here! In general, I block out lots of my day to deliver work for members this could be developing or delivering training. I usually have at least one member meeting booked in.

My favourite days are when I end up going down a rabbit hole of research! I love learning!

5) What’s been your most memorable moment in your inclusion career?

As chair of the Race Equality forum, I organised for a group of us to go and share our experiences as a minority group with our senior leaders.

They were a group of 70-ish staff who were mainly white. It was a really powerful session I was so proud of the group of us who went up and spoke it was so raw and emotional. It felt like we were heard and understood and really propelled the forum and EDI to the forefront.

Meet more people who are driving the inclusion agenda by checking out our ‘5 minutes with…’ interview series.