Brothers Sheeraz Gulsher and Darain Faraz of not-for-profit, People Like Us, teamed up with  Mike Levaggi, the co-creator of the industry’s gender and ethnicity pay gap report to form Braver. Their agenda: to ensure the media industry is more inclusive. 

Braver are calling for agencies to be as courageous with their workplace and employment practices as they are with their work, by placing an emphasis on potential, rather than hiring purely based on experience. 

All three founders passionately believe there is value in diverse thought and the best teams represent the communities they’re communicating to. This isn’t limited to diversity in gender or ethnicity but also socio-economic, sexuality, age, neurodiversity, or disability.

"If you’re hiring diverse talent because you think you should, you may be right, but you’re set up for failure. You need to want to - and it starts by understanding the makeup and culture of your own business. If the business isn’t inclusive, you may attract diverse talent, but you will struggle to retain it.” said Darain Faraz. 

"Our process helps companies to listen, understand and then take action, helping to build and retain teams that deliver quality work by creating an environment of creativity, collaboration, and inclusivity where people can thrive."

Braver aims to help businesses find, retain and grow talent, offering evaluation services and consultancy on workplace policies and practices. They will provide tailored recruitment services using their custom-created ‘skills, personality and perspectives’ profiling system to unlock talent from different backgrounds and other industries. 

Putting its money where its mouth is, Braver has adopted a ‘Rooney Rule’ policy - only sending shortlists that include a minimum of one diverse candidate - they also offer substantial discounts to clients that publish their ethnicity and gender pay-gap data.

Co-founder of Braver, Mike Levaggi said: “The superpower of our industry comes not just from creativity and media know-how, but from being able to bridge the gap between brands and their audiences. However, as the makeup of the UK population has changed to be more diverse, the industry hasn’t. If we want to maintain relevance, it's a commercial imperative to look forward and ensure we represent and can relate to the people we’re communicating to.” 

Tim Healey, Marketing Director and Brand Manager. Shoot 4 The Moon Ltd.