The importance of values within a company remains an important factor of progressing diversity forward across the sports and betting community in 2021.

Speaking to SBC at Betting on Sports Europe (BOSE), Sophie Wood, The Learning and Development partner at LottoLand, but also the Co-Leader of Diversity and Inclusion, shared that her company has reached out to its people and asked some very ‘pertinent’ questions about how included they feel, which is ‘essential’ for inclusion.

“We’re speaking about those problem statements out loud in a constant stream of consultation, then we’re putting in plans to tackle these issues that we have identified in the business,” she explained. “This creates a sense of ownership within the company, and a real-sense of buying into the diversity initiatives you want to create.”

Furthemore, Wood shared her belief that enterprises are reluctant to talk out loud about things that are going wrong in their businesses, adding: “We tend to just like celebrating what has gone right.”

“The field of inclusion is right before collaboration between companies, so in our competitive marketplaces, we don’t want to give up our intelligences. But with diversity inclusion, there is no downside to sharing intelligence.”

Wood made the point that ‘if one company is doing something successful for its people, this should be shared with others so they can do the same thing’ – This sees the industry grow together.

Moreover, in terms of engagement, Wood stressed the importance of values projected towards younger customers, noting: “Their pound, dollar, or euro will go to the companies that speak the values that they hold dear.

“Hopefully gone are the days where you’re presented products on slot machines of semi-naked women which might titillate a very small demographic of your customer base, but actually have diverse themes in your product.”

In terms of the gaming industry, she gave the suggestion of Pride Slots during Pride week, which would see companies ‘engage with a new demographic of customers’, and noted: “This would start changing the image and reputation of the industry.”

Lottoland itself has 34 different nationalities across its employees, and the company’s survey demonstrated that the ‘largest voice’ was from people who did not come from a UK culture. This encouraged the platform to get everybody to phonetically pronounce their name at the end of an email, which avoids any mispronunciations within the business.

Finally, Wood expressed her fondness of the BOSE event, and shared that she visited the Affordability panel: “Affordability is an area that also gives us an opportunity to collaborate with each other, and rise together as an industry.”

BOSE – Sophie Wood: ‘When it comes to diversity there is no downside to sharing intelligence’