At Talented People, we know that the TV playing field is far from level for people who are Black, Asian or from Minority Ethnic groups. Neither is the industry fairly representing those with a disability. It’s so important that the society we see in front of camera is reflected by those behind it, and that’s why Talented People, and the wider industry, needs to work harder to get to know you all.
We love our work. We get to chat to wonderful human beings who are all super passionate about TV and other content they can produce. But importantly for this discussion, we are also the first filter – we decide who is put forward to match our clients’ very particular job brief. We also have a certain amount of influence at shortlisting and interviewing stage, and our opinion can count – if asked – when choosing between the final two candidates.
And that’s why it’s so important to us that we an are inclusive company. If we aren’t, then how can our clients be?
There have been 9000 views of our Facebook Live session ‘Being Black in TV: In Our Own Words’ and it has reached over 18000 timelines in doing so. We’re proud that by using the platform we have grown, and the talented guests we invited on, we have hopefully been able to contribute a small amount towards the change so badly needed in this industry. But we’re determined that this session was just the start.
We like to be transparent, so here’s an update on the work Talented People is already doing behind the scenes:
1) We are organising and setting targets for speculative career chats with people from under-represented groups
2) We are discussing and hoping to implement mentoring opportunities amongst our freelancers and clients
3) We are asking all candidates on our database as well as those brand new to us to give us more information on roles they want to hear about, locations they can work and disclose ethnic background and any disability if they wish so we can monitor the situation. You can use this link to do so.
4) We will be transparent with our clients about how many candidates we put forward to them are from a minority group, and if there aren’t any / enough to satisfy our own sense of responsibility, we will report that fact and offer reasons why we believe this is the case. And then try harder.
5) We are planning a part 2 of our ‘Being Black in TV’ Facebook Live session, so we can all discuss or question the progress being made in the industry.
6) We are working on internal protocols to improve and increase our pool of candidates from B.A.M.E backgrounds and other under-represented groups, and therefore provide better service to our clients and the industry as a whole.
7) We are refreshing our internal Unconscious Bias training and related techniques/courses to challenge ourselves.
8) We are also discussing collaborating with or using consultants who can improve Talented People’s reach and correct and fair handling of diverse candidates.
None of this is the finished article or final answer on what we can do to address racism and the lack of diversity in TV of course. Will it ever be? We truly hope so – but the least we can do is promise to work hard and be transparent about what Talented People is doing to drive genuine change.
Talented People’s Live Sessions on Facebook are proving popular, so watch our social feeds for the next important and inclusive industry natter and join in with your own questions. You can find all previous ones on our site here. Follow Talented People on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram & LinkedIn so you don’t miss good TV industry chat and news, as well as our latest job opportunities…
*Talented People is an Equal Opportunity company and welcomes applicants from all backgrounds and circumstances.*