Sara Bow, Area Manager for North Wales, joined Post Office only six weeks ago as the next step in her retail career. We talked about why diversity and inclusion is important to her and how the Post Office commitment to this helped her decide this was the right choice.
What first attracted you to apply to work for Post Office?
I’m definitely a people person, and when I was researching companies to help find my next role, I wanted to work somewhere that matched my personal values - community and family. The more I delved into the heritage of Post Office and saw how important it is to all generations and all people, along with the commitment to equality and diversity - it spoke volumes to me. I saw the video from Post Office going to London Pride for the first time last year on the Glassdoor website (where people who already work in a company review their workplace), and the clear pride and passion from the people on the ground talking so proudly about their company made me feel like I’d like to be a part of that.
In the past I’ve worked for companies where they claim they are diverse and inclusive, but that wasn’t the reality that I experienced. So far I can safely say everything I’ve seen here shows me it is about doing the right thing for people and communities, and the positivity of the approach to inclusivity that drew me in, feels genuine.
Why is Diversity and Inclusion important to you?
I’ve always been passionate about it, I have a diverse group of friends and I was even a Diversity & Inclusion regional champion in a previous role. At other companies (which will remain nameless) I have seen some cruel behavior towards gay and ethnic minority colleagues – and I wanted to be able to do something about it. It is very important to me to make sure everyone is treated fairly in the workplace, and society.
What do you like about being an Area Manager?
I’m only six weeks in, but I love how every day is different. I love meeting different people, and helping to motivate them and make things a little bit simpler for them. Some of the people I’ve met haven’t seen anyone in a long time, so I’m enjoying building new relationships. I have loved seeing how my help and support is really making a difference.
What are the most common things Postmasters are asking you to help with?
Asking for more training has been a common theme so far, and I’ve been able to reassure people this is being looked at and potentially localised for managers like me to help with. Even simple things like promoting the type of help NBSC can provide and how to contact them has had an impact.
Why is Pride in particular important to you?
I have many gay friends and ex-colleagues, and I love seeing how the event brings colleagues and customers together, connecting people with a brand supporting the cause – and having some fun at the same time. To me it’s just the right thing to do.
You were inspired by the Post Office London Pride video – have you ever been to a Pride event?
I went to Chester Pride when I worked for Costa, with colleagues and also some of our customers - we had a great day.
Will you be going to any of the 2019 Post Office Pride events?
I’ve signed up to go to both Manchester and Bolton – I’m hoping some of the colleagues I’ve got to know recently come along but even if they don’t I’m just happy to go along and make new friends and be a part of the experience.
Your job as an Area Manager involves visiting many agency branches - will you invite any Postmasters along to Pride? There are also in-store materials available to raise Pride awareness with customers.
I’ll certainly be promoting it to Postmasters where I can, and spread the word that everyone is invited!
A recent study by Glassdoor found that 78 percent of employees want their employers to be inclusive and treat everyone equally, and one in five candidates for new jobs feel this has the greatest influence on their decision to join an organisation.