I've been reflecting recently on just how beneficial it has been for both myself and Energize to have such a range of people and organisations involved with us nowadays.

The diversity is not all about gender, age, ethnicity and/or disability nor is it purely about skills and expertise but also to do with welcoming 'diversity of thought'. Sometimes my wife can get a little frustrated at me for adopting the 'devils advocate' position but I do think it is really important to have people with different life experiences and approaches to 'challenge' both you and the status quo.

Much of it has happened for Energize since 2012 when we became an independent charitable organisation and started to focus more on the impact of our work rather than the output - if that makes sense?

We have a diverse range of people involved as volunteers, as staff members, on the Board and also as partners and I guess although I was just thinking how great this is the real benefit is to be taken out of my comfort zone.

I've also tried to do this by joining in other conversations too - ones that might previously been more on my periphery such as championing the importance of local community and voluntary sector - in all it's glorious diversity - and not just the local sports scene.

It has certainly made me realise the importance of seeking out and welcoming difference and not to take anything for granted. I've also learnt that it's a journey and not a destination and am hopeful that I can continue welcoming diversity of background, experience and especially thinking long into the future. I think the future of not only my industry but also the world depends on it.