WIPR (World IP Review) releases an annual WIPR Diversity Champions list that celebrates those who have worked tirelessly to create a brighter future for all aspiring IP (intellectual property) practitioners.
Julius Stobbs has been included in this year's list of leading lights in the IP sector who have been persistent and indomitable in their efforts to make the profession more inclusive.
You can read the full list of Diversity Champions here.
Julius' thoughts on winning the award and what diversity means to Stobbs are below...
I am a middle aged, privately educated, fat, white man. I have not had any challenges in my career based on my colour, religion, sex, or background. So, I am perhaps an odd person to be a diversity champion.
When I set up my firm in 2013, I had the aim of creating the best brands advisory firm. But the culture in the firm is just as important to me. It is fundamental. I wanted to create a community, a proper team, where everyone is valued and respected. People treated the same not just in a management situation but by everyone. We encourage people to embrace their own individuality and be themselves. Hopefully this creates a better experience for the individual, but also likely means they will deliver their best work also.
We encourage diversity. In every way. Not as a soundbite or as something we are supposed to do. If we have a range of people from different backgrounds, genders, orientations, ethnicities then our community will be more interesting, and our team more effective. No good teams have ever been made by choosing the same person over and over again. We encourage people to share what matters to them and we celebrate those things so that we can all understand each other better.
In leadership and management roles in Stobbs, 63% of our team are female (79% overall), 66% of our team attended a state-run or state-funded school, and 56% of our team come from a family where their parents did not attend university. 21% of our team are from an ethnic minority background, 25% of us have a nationality other than British, and 41% of us celebrate a wide variety of religions.
Have we got everything right? Of course not. And we will continue to try to improve on everything that we do. But whilst we have not focussed on Diversity and Inclusion, we have hopefully created an environment where people feel safe in being themselves and that they are valued whatever their background, culture, sex, religion, or views. Unless they don’t believe in brands. I don’t think we could accommodate that!
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Stobbs (IP) Limited, trading as Stobbs, registered in England and Wales, Company number 08369121. Registered Office: Building 1000, Cambridge Research Park, Cambridge, CB25 9PD. VAT Number 155 4670 01. Stobbs (IP) Limited and its directors and employees who are registered UK trade mark attorneys are regulated by IPReg www.ipreg.org.uk