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As a British Asian, racism has impacted me throughout my life so am passionate about surfacing issues and calling out behaviours.  I am an activist for anti-racism and have been working to educate, challenge and change society for the better for the last 30 years. 


I enjoy writing and contributing to on line and print articles on issues of racism, have shared my personal journey as a BAME individual growing up in the 1970s on podcasts and spoken on public platforms at conferences and events. During my time as a HR Director of a global charity I led a diverse HR team to support a diverse workforce.


If I can support you with your D&I agenda, to help it come alive and make a real difference when it comes to race then get in touch and lets make change happen together.

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Why is HR so white?

People Management Magazine Article: The HR professional community lacks the diversity it is seeking to address in the workplace so the phrase of ‘physician heal thyself’ comes to mind. Shakil Butt shares his thoughts alongside others.

Pushing for progress: the workplace's role in political and social movements

HR Magazine Article: With workforces becoming increasingly active in political and social movements,  Jo Gallacher explores the benefits and potential pitfalls HR should look out for with contributions from Shakil Butt, Tolu Farinto, David D'Souza, Jamie Love, Kris Karsten and Marc Weedon, 

Is it because I is Black? Why Ali G's catchphrase is a tragic reality

Personnel Today Article: As organisations make sense of the recent events surrounding the Black Lives Matter movement and how they can do something about racial bias and representation in their own workforce, Shakil Butt explains why an early 2000s TV catchphrase contained an unfortunate grain of truth.

Creating a diverse and inclusive workforce in today’s environment

IRIS Cascade Panel Discussion. Creating a diverse and inclusive workforce that reflects the demographics of society has been a challenge with many businesses looking to their HR functions to lead the way. Is it about legislation? Is it the policies, processes or the right people? Is it social movements and activism? Where to begin?


Live Twitter Panel: CIPD hosted event discussing Ending Racism at Work with CEO, Peter Cheese and guests including Shakil Butt, CIPD Board Member, Nichole Higgins, Chair of EmbRace, the CIPD's internal race and equality staff network, Jill Miller, CIPD's Public Policy Advisor and  Denise Sanderson- Estcourt, Head of People at the Open Data Institute.

Not all racism is malicious – but it's still devastating

People Management Magazine Article: Exploring how micro aggressions whilst less overt, over time can have a cumulative effect, leading to macro aggressions including even murder.

BAME workers feel they have to mask identity at work

HR Magazine Article: Commentary on new analysis by culture change organisation Utopia that shows nearly half of BAME workers in the UK said they have to mask part of their identity to fit in at the office.

Do Better

Accounting and Business Magazine Article: Shakil Butt FCCA shares his personal experience of racism at school and professionally, and urges employers to step up and help create a fairer world

Why the far right 'protests' this weekend were far from our finest hour

HR Magazine Article: Racist descending in London, defending Churchill, the British Empire, racism  and what can the world of work do to be part of the solution 15/06/2020

HR's Role in Black Lives Matter

CIPD Webinar: Exploring ‘The Role of HR in Black Lives Matter' an online discussion and Q&A session with special guest Mayokun - Mac Alonge from the Equal Group. Does HR have a role? Has it done enough? Has it failed? What more can be done? There are no easy answers when dealing with a complex, long standing sickness like racism.

HR Needs to take the lead in calling out racism at work

People Management Magazine Article: People professionals are in a unique position to counter racial discrimination in organisations, but they need to grasp the opportunity.

Podcast: Racism and the impact on the wellbeing of Black people and people of colour.

Word of Good Podcast: Season 2, Episode 10: Hosted by Gethin Nadin with Shakil Butt, HR Hero for Hire, Non- Executive Director, CIPD

The NHS is doing an amazing job but is it at risk of being white-washed?

HR Magazine Article: Media coverage of our appreciation for our NHS was whitewashed. The tragic loss of BAME doctors and nurses reminds us of the actual ethnic make up of the NHS & our debt to these heroes risking themselves everyday for all of us.

Diversity and inclusion in project teams

Knowledge Train Article; What is Diversity and Inclusion, a quick history, its' importance and some success stories with contributions from Shakil Butt, Garry Turner, Roianne Nedd, and Mostafa Al Hadla

Is HR a hypocrite when it comes to D&I?

HR Magazine Article: With CIPD data showing the HR profession is overwhelmingly female, white and straight, is HR itself walking the talk on diversity and inclusion?

To say we ‘don’t see colour’ is extremely unhelpful

People Management Magazine Article: Often it is claimed that we don't see colour which begs the question - What do you see? We do see colour, age , gender and everything about the person but the bigger question is what we do next with all that information.

CIPD Mid and North Wales - The Delusion of Inclusion

Keynote on Racism delivered at CIPD Mid and North Wales Branch. With the ethnicity pay gap reporting looming, when will we be comfortable talking about race? 12/02/2020

BAME Apprenticeship Awards Launch

Delivering a keynote on D&I at the BAME Apprenticeship Awards Launch 29/01/2020.

From Birmingham to Baku and beyond

People Space Article: HR professionals in Azerbaijan gather for the HR Summit of the year with International Speakers from all parts of the world, excited to engage, network and to co-create the future of HR 

Is The Apprentice racist? Lessons for race at work

HR Magazine Article: Seven BAME candidates fired in seven weeks. Is the BBC Apprentice racist was the question posed by the Guardian newspaper. I share my thoughts with HR Magazine on whether the show has been firing people from a BAME background or not and the parallels with the world of work.

Why senior leaders need to embrace D&I

Good Work TV Interview at CIPD Annual Conference and Exhibition sharing thoughs on why senior leaders need to step up and begin to fully embrace diversity and inclusion. 06/11/2019

Asian Apprenticeship Awards 2019

Panel on diversity and inclusion at the Asian Apprenticeship Awards 2019 with former and current contestants of BBC's Apprentice and last years winner of the award. 31/10/2019

CIPD Black History Month

Keynote on racism delivered at CIPD South London Branch. 16/10/2019

Racism is not black and white but it could be 50 shades of blue

People Space Article: Exploring where racism comes from and what drives us to perceive someone differently. Is it a learned behaviour or can we do something about it?

The HR news briefing: Female and BAME military staff raise concerns

HR Magazine Article: HR perspective on a Commons Defence Select Committee report that found a disproportionate number of female and BAME staff in the military file internal complaints

The Delusion of Inclusion

Keynote session delivered on the topic of the 'Delusion of Inclusion' at Takeda, London 03/07/2019.

HR and race in the workplace

HR Magazine Article: Discussing the role HR has to play within organisations championing race and exploring some of the obstacles.

A royal arrival: Lessons in engagement and inclusion

HR Magazine Article: The story of two very different people coming together across class divides and racial backgrounds now ushering in the next generation of royals is a powerful message. This showcases what love can do.

Opportunities in HR unequal feel BAME HRs

HR Magazine Article: Commentary on research showing a disconnect exists between BAME and white HR professionals' perceptions of racial equality within their profession. 

Workplaces can improve inclusion by learning from jury decision making and selection

People Space Article: Juries are living proof that an inclusive approach enables collective decision making, problem solving and equal voice. A model for today’s workplaces?

CIPD's EmbRace reception

Speaking at EmbRace reception event as part of CIPD's Annual Conference & Exhibition fringe events 07/11/2018

If Doctor Who can be inclusive, we all can

People Management Article: Opinion piece reflecting on the bold move by the BBC to appoint Jodie Whittaker, a woman in what until now had been a male only role and the implications for the world of work.

Racial and ethnic prejudice is holding us back

HR Magazine article: Why are there so few BAME leaders in senior roles? Does race and colour present additional challenges in the employment market? I share my thoughts and experiences being a minority looking for opportunities. 

It may be time to ditch hierarchies

HR Magazine article: An analysis of hierarchies, where they originate from, questioning whether they work and the impact on the C suite perpetuating sameness. Is it time to call time on the parent-child relationship in favour of peer to peer relationships in flatter structures?

Breaking Down Barriers

Keynote speech delivered at BT with their charity partner Human Appeal: Reflections on BAME issues considering historical perspectives, personal insights and relevance to the world of work 09/05/2018

Does the BAME label help or hinder workplace diversity?

People Management Magazine Article: Experts debate the role of terminology after MP’s concerns over ‘patronising’ language. 

Why Black Panther is a lesson in Diversity & Inclusion

People Management Magazine Article exploring how to do diversity and inclusion effectively and profitably through analysis of Marvel's Black Panther movie  – not just by having a token character in the supporting cast, but allowing space for difference to rise and take its place as equals among the many.

HRD Summit 2018

Chair at the HRD Summit leading on culture and inclusion stream 06/02/2018

Business 'needs a wake-up call on race'

People Management Magazine: Commentary on CIPD research that highlights the challenges facing BAME employees in the workplace. 

The Truly Inclusive Organisation

Chairing D&I conference themed 'The Truly Inclusive Organisation' 18/10/2017

Musings on wellbeing: Ownership, D&I and awareness

HR Magazine: Article on reflections following a round table discussion by HRDs on well being in their respective organisations.

Getting turkeys to vote for Christmas

LinkedIn: Article highlighting the challenges around Diversity and Inclusion and the role HR has to play coming out of a round table hosted by Jericho Chambers and the CIPD titled 'Inclusion & Voice: How to negotiate and influence those who stand to lose'.

The 'Trump' Effect

LinkedIn Blog: Exploring the rise of racism and the 'alt right' in the post Trump world we live in

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