Breaking Diversity Barriers

The Breaking Diversity Barriers programme removes barriers to promotion for Band 7-8B finance professionals regardless of background.

Who is this development programme for?

This development programme aims to empower finance staff from under-represented groups (i.e., those with diverse ethnic, gender, disability, and LGBTQ+ Protected Characteristics) by giving them the skills to overcome the barriers that they face in their working lives. These barriers, which were identified during our research, including the safehouse discussions and the One NHS Finance engagement campaign, frequently prevent such people in Band 7-8b roles from progressing into Band 8b+ roles.

After completion of this programme, candidates should feel confident to step-up into more senior positions and to apply to our other existing senior talent management programmes.

How does it work?

Maximum participant number: 30

Eligibility: Finance staff who identify as one or more of the groups under-represented at nhs finance director level, including:

  • females
  • LGBTQ+ staff
  • disabled, and neuro-diverse staff
  • ethnic minority groups

Band Level: 7-8b roles

Cost: Free to attend, with the expectation of travel and overnight accommodation to be covered by the individual or via their NHS organisation. Lunch and refreshments will be provided throughout the three days. For any no-shows or late cancellations, a fee will be charged to the individual.

Application process: Nomination from Finance Director/ Deputy or line-manger via email. With a personal statement (no more than 500 words) about who you are and your story so far, where you want to get to in your career, and the barriers you have identified that you want to explore and overcome in this programme.

Programme delivery

Format: 3 x full workshop days over 3-4 months

Day 1 South: 16th January, London.

Day 2 North: 9th February, Leeds.

Day 3 Midlands: 16th March, Birmingham.

One Chair for all three days with individual speakers and facilitators invited to present. Programme will include sessions from experts and leaders within the equality, diversity and inclusion field and will be interactive and discussion-led. Participants will be expected to share and feedback openly during the sessions but can be assured that confidentiality and Chatham House Rules will be instated. 

In-between ‘check-in’ days with a Sponsor that delegates must arrange themselves. Homework to complete between event days.


  • Building confidence and resilience – being your authentic self
  • Recognising barriers to diversity and inclusion and how to overcome these
  • Gaining the confidence to challenge discrimination and perceived inequalities in the workplace
  • Upskilling to work within inherently biased environments
  • Learning how to present your unique selling point and using that to aid in career progression

How do I apply?

Applications are now closed, register your interest in the programme here. 

“Very interactive and engaging and has helped regain my self-esteem.” Cohort 2 delegate feedback.