H&M is looking to make itself more inclusive and diverse. After criticism last year of the Swedish brand’s childrenswear marketing campaign that was seen as culturally insensitive, the company released a minimal, swift statement of apology. The brand has since realized that it needs to take larger steps to prevent similar mistakes and increase diversity throughout its workplace business and its outward appearance.

To increase inclusive initiatives, H&M named Ezinne Kwubiri as head of inclusivity and diversity for North America. Kwubiri has come from Viacom, where she worked as the director of change management. At H&M, Kwubiri report to the president of H&M North America and works closely with Annie Wu, the global head of inclusivity and diversity.

Kwubiri told Business of Fashion that as she comes from a non-fashion background, she hopes to challenge the status quo with her fresh and unique perspective. “I want to challenge the mindset across the board, from the way we do our promotions, to our hiring process, to how we interact with our employees and customers, as well as their communities— who all deserve our support and celebration,” she said.

Kwubiri is looking more closely into H&M’s consumer demographics. She told Business of Fashion that she has partnered with external consultants to learn more about the H&M consumer and to determine how consumers view H&M. With this data in mind, Kwubiri will be determining the best course of action to create positive change within the brand. She explained, “For the US, we are seeking to do three things, to educate and raise awareness, to become better advocates for the communities we are a part of, and finally to challenge the status quo and accepted mindset about how we achieve things.”

 

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