Cheema is co-chair of Sodexo’s Origins employee network group where he has been a member of the group since 2016. Origins aims to encourage inclusivity amongst Sodexo’s colleagues by celebrating everyone’s culture, heritage and beliefs as well as promoting equal opportunities for all.
Sean Haley, regional chair at Sodexo UK & Ireland, said: “We are incredibly proud of Harpreet. EMpower’s role model lists celebrate those in business who are driving the charge for inclusion and it is great to see Harpreet recognised for his fantastic achievements in paving the way for much needed change.”
In the summer 2020 Cheema shared a personal letter to all of Sodexo’s employees in the UK and Ireland in response to the Black Lives Matter movement. A virtual meeting was then organised with some 300 colleagues joining the meeting.
Over the past year Cheema has helped to address the underrepresentation of colleagues from ethnic minority backgrounds in Sodexo senior management positions.
Cheema added: “I didn't ever actively choose to be involved in inclusion activity; however, as a British Indian person I cannot avoid it, I was born into it. I feel that as an ethnic minority I have a sense of duty to make sure the playing field is as level as it can be for everyone, as it isn't today.”