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Risky Mix: Changing the Mix, One Episode at a Time

Katie Crook-Davies (member of The Camelot Network) and Rajasree Variyar, insurance industry experts and co-founders of The Risky Mix podcast, tell us all about their mission to make insurance more diverse and inclusive.

Where & why did the Risky Mix Podcast come about?

With a combined 20 years in insurance, we’ve had more than just a peek behind the curtain at the financial services industry. Once you’ve seen it up close and personal, you can’t help but notice what it’s missing; the lack of diversity, in particular, stands out. Here at the Risky Mix, we’ve made it our goal to change the status quo and make the financial services industry as inclusive as we possibly can.

What’s the problem?

The industry is undeniably in need of a good old shakeup and has to transition away from predominantly white, male boardrooms, pulling up extra chairs for those marginalised groups. Inclusivity is the name of the game and the financial services sector is certainly one that needs to create a more diverse culture representative of a whole cohort of groups that actually reflects the world we live in today. We’re not just talking about BAME internships, we’d love to see an impact on the top-level executive positions.

The statistics are behind us on this, with Black, Asian and minority ethnic representation in the corporate world – only one out of 16 executives come from this particular demographic – dismal, to say the least.

Why does the industry need to become more diverse?

We believe that by making the industry more inclusive, it would encourage an expansion and the pool of talent will deepen. This shift will mean a more genuine and authentic industry, which would accurately reflect today’s consumers. Spearheading such change can be particularly beneficial for companies, with the added incentive of delivering products and services that are informed by a more diverse understanding of consumer needs. Let us not forget that this all works in the favour of companies’ brand images and, as I’m sure you’re all aware, reputation
is everything.

How is the podcast tackling these issues?

Years of experience in the industry has taught us that this issue is a deep-rooted one; the more light shed on it and the more conversations happening around it, the better. That’s why we started The Risky Mix podcast in October 2019. Our values help drive the discussion, pushing us to get right into the nitty-gritty of key issues, whilst offering a safe space for guests to share their truths and experiences.

What type of guests are featured on the podcast?

We actively look to talk to the trailblazers of our industry – from people with a story, who deserve to be heard, to those who have long been in the game and have that vital nugget of wisdom to share, and to any and all looking to change the mix. So far, our podcast has hosted a range of guests, including Financial Times journalist Simoney Kyriakou, head of AXA NEXT Parul Kaul-Green, and iPipeline managing director Ian Teague – plus many, many more.

What sort of topics are covered?

We’re all about initiating that thought-provoking conversation, and we’ve covered a broad spectrum of subjects including racial diversity, the gender gap, health and wellbeing, sexual orientations, and so on! But we want to take things further by tackling an even more ambitious array of topics, delving deeper into persistent issues that may not necessarily get the air time anywhere else.

Above all else, we want to inspire change across the industry. It will be no easy feat but we’re determined to expand our horizons and bring more perspectives from within financial services into the light.

To find out more about The Risky Mix podcast and listen to previous episodes, visit:

Also, Katie and Raj are always looking to partner up with companies who care. Who have a sense of purpose. Who walk the walk! So if you think this could be you, then please get in touch here.

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