Women of Aurizon Blazing a Trail in Regional Australia
This morning our Managing Director & CEO Andrew Harding welcomed 1400 people to the International Women’s Day Breakfast for 2018 in Brisbane, hosted by the UN Women National Committee Australia.
Pictured: UN Women National Committee Australia Executive Director Janelle Weissman (left) with Aurizon MD & CEO Andrew Harding (centre) and Aurizon employees at the Brisbane UN International Women's Day Breakfast.
The event represented a fantastic cross-section of the
community and a time to turn our thoughts to this year’s theme of ‘Leave no
It is a reminder of how far we have come but how much more
we can do – collectively in business and in the community.
In Aurizon, we have made significant progress in re-shaping
the diversity of our company, which has a history of predominantly male
Since 2011, our female participation has increased from 11%
to just over 20% today. We have introduced a range of initiatives to promote
gender diversity and to develop the capability of Aurizon women.
Andrew shared with the audience today his aspiration to
bring more Aurizon employees closer to our operations throughout Australia. By
growing our regional presence, we will open up more job and career
opportunities for women in regional communities.
“Already we have more than 600 women working in regional
Australia. Some of these women have been trailblazers for our company and our
industry,” he said.
“The first women to drive trains in remote areas; to
maintain locomotives, or to work on track gangs across regional Australia. Others have become leaders in operational
roles traditionally held by men.
“It is also my strong belief that we will only maximise the
potential of a diverse workforce by being more inclusive. Inclusive workplaces
create the right environment for diversity of thought, where we are not
constrained by tradition or by groupthink.
We need to create an environment of involvement, respect and
participation where we actively encourage different perspectives. And in my
experience, change is most powerful when it is driven by your employees.”
In Aurizon, there are a number of grass-roots networks that
have grown within the Company in recent years, including the Male Champions of Change, the Indigenous Reference Group, and the LGBTIQ
Rather than taking a hierarchical top-down approach, Aurizon
encourages employees to have a strong voice. Where they can actively shape
diversity and inclusion from their own perspective, and in their own work
environment, and to influence the wider organisation.
Every person in an organisation has the power to make
meaningful change, and to share different experiences and different
backgrounds. That’s the opportunity through a creating a more inclusive work