Sunny once danced his way into the semi-finals of Britain’s Got Talent. Since then, some of his best moves include joining Deloitte’s GLOBE network and moving up within the firm as a Digital Transformation Leader.
Do you feel supported and included at work?
Yes. I am part of GLOBE (Deloitte’s LGBTQ+ diversity network). I’ve always been supported when I’ve wanted the business to engage with initiatives, such a PRIDE. My leaders encourage and support projects I embark on with purpose and inclusion at the heart of them. When it comes to ways of working, I am a firm believer in the ‘trust and output’ model that the firm hugely advocates. We work hard, but we work flexibly around our commitments. It’s about what suits your circumstances and balances the needs of the firm and our clients.
Can you tell us more about your role in GLOBE?
I lead the community investment pillar for GLOBE. A priority this year is to develop a partnership with a charity that fosters LGBTQ+ inclusion through education, as part of our Five Million Futures ambition. This is hugely rewarding for me, as someone who identifies as a cis gay man, who was born in Tanzania. Influencing the future of people through inclusive education is how we’ll achieve long-term systematic and social change in our world.
What are your interests outside of Deloitte?
Well, I’ve always been a fan of dance. I used to partake in a Bollywood dance group and even managed to get to the semifinals of Britain’s Got Talent (that was some time ago now!). I also bake and during lockdown, I dusted off my apron and started baking for the charity Free Cakes for Kids Hackney.
What surprised you about the firm when you joined?
I held a misconception that everyone at Deloitte had been to a red brick university and that was the only way in. I felt I would be out of place. That was far from the truth. I’ve come across people from so many different backgrounds here. There are many people I respect that didn’t go to university, but have worked their way up through experience and passion. Our BrightStart Apprenticeship scheme is incredible; I’ve had BrightStart Apprentices work in my teams and they’re so passionate and eager to learn. It really isn’t about your academic background at all, we care about your range of different experiences and willingness to immerse yourself to learn and coach others.
And what might surprise people about your service line?
Lots of things! Firstly, working in Tax is more than just tax. Our Global Employer Services (GES) team prepares tax returns for individuals in over 150 countries. Our immigration business applies for visas and work permits and works closely with governments and authorities to understand an ever-shifting geo-political landscape. We’ve designed executive compensation for global corporations. And we climb mountains, among many charitable activities. The pandemic has really encouraged all of our clients to think about their work, workforce and workplace. Remote working and the future of work are exciting conversations that'll shape what global employment and compliance will look like and the digital platforms that enable new experiences.
How have you progressed since you started at Deloitte?
I came into the Tax team with no accountancy knowledge or background, let alone experience of working in cross-border mobility or understanding the related compliance issues. But I’ve had great mentors and people who will explain anything that I’ve asked. I joined as a Manager, have reached Director level and have aspirations to make it to Partner. I will certainly continue to learn, to grow teams, and make an impact within the global markets I serve.
Are you working on any innovative projects?
Completing a tax return across multiple countries is complex. Firms who undertake this type of work have followed a similar process and model without change for 15-20 years. I have the opportunity to lead a programme to innovate that process and the digital platform that underpins it. It’s not easy. This is about creating a brand new, simpler user experience, integrating with third parties to create features that simplify interactions, reducing over forty thousand questions, while making sure we don’t expose any risk.
Interested in joining our Tax team? Explore your opportunities here.
Discover more about life at Deloitte and our Diversity Networks here.