Michael Khan

Michael Khan joined Oliver Wyman straight from university and now, over a decade later, he heads up the business’ entry-level recruiting efforts in the UK and Ireland.

Michael is a Partner in the ‘Transportation & Services’ and ‘Pricing, Sales & Marketing’ practices where he leads strategy, commercial, and operational improvements in the aviation, travel, and leisure sectors.

Why do you support the HeForShe campaign and gender equality in the workplace?

Short answer? It’s the right thing to do!

Long answer: I work for a leading management consultancy, and our industry is all about helping our clients to solve their toughest problems. There is plenty of evidence to demonstrate that more diverse teams outperform less diverse teams – so if we want to deliver the greatest impact for our clients (and we do!), having diverse teams is a pre-requisite, not an option.

I see gender diversity as one important element here, but of course there are others – from racial and ethnic diversity to cognitive diversity to socioeconomic diversity – that are critical also.

I’d like to think that we all want to contribute to society – to leave a better world for our children and grandchildren than we inherited – and supporting and advancing gender equality is a great example of one way we can do this. I believe that great strides in gender equality have been made compared to our parents’ or grandparents’ times – but we still have a long way to go.

What are you personally doing to create gender equality in the workplace?

I lead our graduate recruitment activities in the UK and Ireland, and we work hard to understand and try to reduce bias in our recruiting. Unconscious bias training is compulsory for all our interviewers, and our interview format and evaluation approach are designed to give a fair, objective view of each candidate we see. I also work with the recruiting team to analyse our recruitment data at every stage of the process so we can identify skews and adjust what we do to ensure an equal opportunity of success across all genders.

I’m incredibly proud that this focus has seen Oliver Wyman achieve a broadly equal gender balance in our entry-level graduate intakes since 2015. I am firmly committed to maintaining this.

I also mentor women, helping them prepare for a promotion, advance their skills, and working through career goals and how to achieve them. On a personal level, I’ve found this very rewarding, particularly hearing the differences and parallels between their experiences and my own.

How welcome are men in the gender equality conversation currently?

In my experience, very welcome. Gender equality is all our responsibility: to call out behaviours that are wrong, to help all genders achieve their potential, and to recognise (and celebrate) diversity that makes our teams stronger.

Our women’s network, WOW, is open to all genders – not just men but also trans people, people who are genderqueer, and non-binary people.

WeAreTechWomen has a back catalogue of thousands of HeForShe interviews, including Christian Edelmann, George Brasher, Stephen Mercer and many more. You can read about all the amazing men championing gender equality here.