Feb 12, 2021 | By Emma Grace Bailey
Big data meets consumer insights, Experience WGSN.
That’s why I’m sending this letter.
My name is Amiyra Perkins, Director of WGSN Mindset for North America. As a proud black woman, it’s glaringly obvious that change is needed because we cannot continue to live in a society that doesn’t cherish people that look like me. This fundamental shift is long overdue.
When I joined the leadership team at WGSN, I knew it was for more than just the job, it was also for the people and the emphasis of taking care of each other. This was an awakening for me, as during my 13 years in the fashion industry (working with well-known heritage brands) I’d never worked in an organisation that prioritised BLM and amplified voices like mine. Tokenism and suppression is real, especially within the workplace. I’ve seen first-hand how brands claim to be diverse and inclusive, but are unable to develop or promote BAME into positions of leadership or even hire BAME within the organisation, creating confusion and isolation for those hires.
True diversity comes from brave leadership, and bravery comes from listening while leading.
At WGSN, we recognise we have a lot of work to do. We’ve all witnessed the uptick of brands standing in solidarity, but it’s not enough – we have to look inward and do something bigger than just a black square. It’s a good first step, but we have a long road ahead of us.
That’s why I’m honoured that our MD Carla Buzasi passed the torch of leadership to me to develop (alongside my global colleagues) the WGSN Change Committee. WGSN recognises the impact we have on our community and wants to drive change to a future that is more diverse and equal by inspiring and showcasing all types of creativity.
This isn’t hyperbole. I personally feel a responsibility to keep us accountable and remain laser-focused on creating this change. But I cannot do it alone. There are many passionate voices who want to do something, and realise change is imminent. I look forward to hearing from you firstname.lastname@example.org about what steps you are doing to action fundamental change within your own company. More importantly, how we can help you build the future that we all know is possible? We want to hear from you because we’re committed to doing the work to become more educated and better advocates for the future – and the change – we want to see.
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