Why telling your story matters

Creating a brighter future for employees, customers and the communities it operates in underpins Zurich’s commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging.  Our ‘This is Us: This is Me’ campaign, highlights a wonderful example of how our employees have created a supportive community for our colleagues.
Pictured L to R: Ali Hannon, Laura Corrigan, Asha Barry, Sayantan Banerji, Kate McNamara, and Stephen Whyte

Building an inclusive culture together, the ‘This is us. This is me.’ movement is an employee led initiative that is about enabling open conversations across a range of topics, embracing a culture of authenticity, acceptance and open mindedness where each one of us can play an active part in building an inclusive organisation for 'all of us'.

Zurich Ireland recently held its first hybrid conference as part of our ‘This is Us : This is Me’ campaign.

Ali Hannon, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Consultant, who hosted the conference emphasised it would centre around the importance of storytelling and why telling your story matters. The conference was hugely engaging and impactful for everyone – storytellers, panellists and the audience – and it was refreshing and emotional to hear the stories that were shared with such honesty and openness. 

Anthony Brennan, CEO Zurich Ireland started the conference highlighting how this employee-led idea has turned into a self-sustaining movement and how one of the aims of the conference was to make This is Us, This is Me more accessible to all employees.

He shared his own experiences of joining This is Us, This is Me sessions, from initially wondering how he could relate and could make a difference, to the quick realisation that by listening, asking questions, sharing and learning, we can all be part of a very supportive community for our colleagues. 

We were delighted to also be joined on the day by our CEO EMEA and Bank Distribution, Alison Martin, who shared her deeply personal story. The way in which Alison shared her story was bravely honest and truly authentic, sharing both painful and humorous moments along her journey. Alison’s story encouraged us all to think about how we define ourselves as individuals, outside of work, and importantly to be open and honest about the things that we are going through so that we can support each other. This message is the heart of the This is Us, This is Me initiative.

1. Open and honest conversation

A panel of storytellers: Laura Corrigan, Asha Barry, Sayantan Banerji, Kate McNamara, and Stephen Whyte, each shared why telling their story mattered, reflecting on how the campaign impacted their lives, inside and outside of work, and what they have learned from taking part.

Ali concluded the first panel discussion by asking about the future of the campaign and the desired legacy. The responses focused on creating connections, sharing stories, and fostering openness in the workplace, allowing everyone to be their authentic selves.

2. Communication and awareness

Ali then introduced the second panel discussion, which focused on the impact of the campaign within the business. The panellists Chris Goold, Elaine Fitzpatrick and Colm Blake all shared their thoughts on the impact of storytelling as a method of communication, how the campaign has increased their awareness of diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging (DEIB) and how the campaign gave them pause for thought when it comes to giving employees the opportunity to share their story and be their authentic self.  They also reflected on how the campaign reinforces the message that it is ok to be vulnerable in the workplace and the key role our people, including our leaders, play in supporting the campaign. 

Ali concluded the conference by emphasising the value of storytelling and the wealth of collective experiences it provides. They ended on a quote: “stories are life’s inheritance, they unfold everyday, every minute and every second, stories leave us with a wealth of collective experiences, and if we chose to open our hearts and minds to these indispensable heirlooms, they will deeply enrich our lives.” 

3. Making a difference

We have lots of great sessions planned for 2024 with topics including an experience from a person who stammers, taking carers leave, grief, neurodiversity, gender identity and more.

Click here to find out more about Zurich’s commitment to creating a fair, diverse and inclusive environment, and how by embracing our differences, we strive to make better decisions, be a better workplace and achieve better outcomes for our customers, our communities and our people.

Sign Up Here

For promotional offers, news, updates and access to exclusive reports from Zurich

By pressing the submit button you are providing your consent to receive email communications from Zurich Life and other Zurich Group Companies.
See the Zurich Privacy Policy for your rights and how your personal information is used.

Indicates required field

...  Sending Response, please wait ...

Your response has been successfully submitted.

An error has occurred attempting to submit your response. Please try again.