Registration: 08:30 - 09:15


09:15 – 09:30

Rebecca Thompson, past president 2017-18, CIOB

Part 1 – Personal Development

09:30 – 10:00

Unconscious Bias

Are you guilty of it and how can it be tackled in the workplace? 

Fiona Triller, Programme Director, Creating Inclusive Cultures

Unconscious biases are social stereotypes about certain groups of people that individuals form outside of their own conscious awareness. Our brains make quick judgements and assessments, influenced by our background, cultural environment and personal experiences.

Research has highlighted racial and gender bias in the recruitment process and these prejudices can be extremely damaging in the workplace, having a huge impact on the way that people manage and those that they manage.

In this session we will hear from experts on how to identify and overcome unconscious bias to create an inclusive working environment where everyone can flourish.

10:00 – 10:30

Unlocking your potential

Anthony Taylor, resilience and talent coach, Anthony Taylor Ltd

Learn how to unlock your potential and shine in the workplace. How to develop the mental strength needed for a strong personal brand and overcome imposter syndrome.

10:30 – 11:15

Creating an inclusive culture


Our panel of experts will build on the issues raised in the morning’s sessions to discuss how organisations can create an inclusive culture which encourages staff to succeed.

  • Diane Lightfoot - chief executive officer, Business Disability Forum
  • Raj Patel - chief executive officer, Housing Diversity Network
  • Katie Kelleher - crawler crane operator
  • Chris Keast - chair of the CIOB Diversity Special Interest Group
  • Anil Iyer - Director, Kranial Solutions

11:15 – 11:45

Coffee, networking & exhibition 

Part 2 – Recruitment

11:45 – 12:45

Is construction a dirty word?

Student and teacher panel led by

Julian Buttery, senior employer engagement manager, The Careers & Enterprise Company

Anecdotal evidence suggests that many young people are discouraged from entering the construction sector by parents and teachers who believe that it doesn’t offer attractive career options.

In this session led by we hear from students about their experiences as they pursue a construction career and talk to teachers about how young people, who are looking to join the sector, can be better supported.

12:45 – 13:45

Lunch, networking & exhibition 

13:45 – 14:30

How can we attract a more diverse workforce for the future?


With an ongoing skills crisis set to be further exacerbated by Brexit it has never been more important to attract more people into construction. But in order to build a strong workforce for the future, the sector must become more diverse.

Role models and mentoring schemes have an important part to play in highlighting the rewarding career options that are available, but the sector must widen its appeal to attract more people from hard-to-reach or marginalised communities.

So how can we break down the barriers that are preventing people from entering the industry, change recruitment methods to appeal to a wider talent pool and engage with school children, parents & teachers to make construction careers more attractive to young people?

  • Wendy Ajuwon - head of marketing, British Board of Agrément
  • Jayne Hall - vice president & diversity champion, Chartered Association of Building Engineers (CABE)
  • Caroline Key - G4C national co-chair, CITB
  • Nike Folayan - chair, Association For Black and Minority Ethnic Engineers
  • Josie Rothera - Course Director for MSc Civil Engineering, Leeds Beckett University and Director at STEER Support & Mentoring CIC

14:30 – 15:15

Implementing inclusive recruitment strategies

How can you ensure that your recruitment process is fair and that people from different backgrounds are treated equally? This session focuses on how companies can make recruitment more inclusive. It covers everything from inclusive job descriptions and ensuring that job adverts have a diverse reach to the introduction of policies such as blind recruitment.

  • Barry Cullen - diversity and inclusion director, RICS
  • Harish Bhayani - senior partner, PRM Diversity Consultants
  • Fiona Sharp - operations director (Re:vision), Procure Plus
  • Sam Pricehead of client engagement, Morson Group

15:15 - 15:45

Coffee, networking & exhibition 

Part 3 – Retention

15:45 – 16:15

Engaging the majority

Mark McBride-Wright, founder, EqualEngineers

Dr Mark McBride-Wright, founder and managing director of EqualEngineers talks about why men need to find their voice as part of the diversity conversation; the dangers of an ineffectively executed diversity and inclusion strategy and how a more inclusive conversation around diversity can be curated.

16:15 - 16:45

Building the business case for diversity


Having a diverse workforce can bring countless business benefits, from diversity of thought to a more inclusive built environment and building design, while greater diversity in leadership can make organisations more profitable. This panel discussion explores the relationship between diversity and business success.

  • Mike Wilton - director, Leader of Manchester Office - Arup
  • Andy Stanley - associate director, Turner & Townsend
  • Anjali Pindoria - project surveyor, AVI Contracts
  • Sharon Amesu - Leadership consultant & professional speaker

16:45 – 17:00

How to promote cultures of positive wellbeing throughout the industry

Joscelyne Shaw, director of strategy, Mates in Mind

Our mental health has a huge impact on our everyday lives and can determine the choices that we make, how we relate to others and how we handle stress in the workplace but within the construction sector there has all too often been a culture of stigma surrounding the issue in the past.