Below is our recent interview with Ryan Curtis-Johnson, Director of Communications at The Valuable 500:
Q: Could you provide our readers with a brief introduction to your company?
A: The Valuable 500 is a global business collective made up of 500 CEOs and their companies, innovating together for disability inclusion. 500 CEOs and their companies have joined by making a commitment to action for disability inclusion. They are now beginning to work together to drive system change as a collective.
The Valuable 500’s mission is to use the power of business to drive lasting change for the 1.3 billion people around the world, living with a disability.
Q: Any highlights on your recent announcement?
A: Almost half of business leaders believe there aren’t enough candidates with a disability despite over 1M disabled people wanting to work.
Recent research carried out by the Valuable 500 also showed that almost two-thirds (63%) of businesses didn’t know how many people within their organisation identify as disabled.
Q: Can you give us more insights into your offering?
A: Supported by our strategic partners – The Nippon Foundation, International Disability Alliance and the World Economic Forum- our team collaborate and connect with 500 of the world’s most influential global businesses for disability inclusion. Together with our Iconic Leader companies, we have developed a transformation programme which will drive system change and make business more inclusive of people with disabilities.
Q: What can we expect from your company in next 6 months? What are your plans?
A: We are focused on the transformation programme for the Valuable 500, this will see the introduction of a Listening Tool allowing direct feedback to the members from people with disabilities; encouraging more C-suite storytelling related to lived experience of disability; the launching of a directory of disability professionals who will be able to support members on their own inclusion journeys – The Valuable Directory, and the launch of ‘Generation Valuable’, a programme designed to accelerate opportunities and elevate the voices of tomorrow’s C-suite talent. Generation Valuable will connect and incubate C-Suite talent with disabled talent and profoundly affect both. It will foster new perspectives, deepen understandings, and cultivate growth.
There is a continued effort to keep driving the message and getting disability inclusion on the agenda and with the support of leadership.
Q: What is the best thing about your company that people might not know about?
A: In order, to join the Valuable 500, the CEO or leader of each of our companies made a personal commitment to action for disability inclusion. This is what makes us different – we encourage our companies to take tangible action, not just talk about inclusion. We are the largest global collective of CEO committed to disability inclusion in business spanning 41 countries and 64 sectors.
The people at the Valuable 500 are full of heart and passion not just by helping our members but supporting the disabled community to be heard, noticed, and not forgotten.