At DTS we maintain a broad view defining diversity as age, gender, LGBTI, ethnicity and in the digital transformation context, talent, skillsets and experiences acquired from outside the industry and sector. DTS allocates higher competitive benchmarking scores within the all-important People & Culture dimension should a company demonstrate clear progress in these areas.
Recently, its been well documented that many high profile Silicon Valley tech giants are struggling with ongoing Gender Diversity issues, especially in relation to the composition of their boards and senior executive layers. According to Equilar, if the US continues at the current gender trajectory board parity will be achieved by 2055!
Increasingly Australian corporates are making inroads with regards to diversity challenges and as a consequence realizing significant gains across traditionally conservative industries such as Retail Energy and Banking.
Maile Carnegie’s appointment as Group Executive – Digital Banking at ANZ raised eyebrows with many pundits questioning ” Why would you leave Google for ANZ?” Well I can’t really answer that, Maile being the only person that can, but I think its no one’s business really. The structural and strategic challenges presented are no small feat with Banks not fully transformed with digital and customer experiences still sub-optimized in parts. Furthermore, banks typically operate within autocratic top down hierarchical structures.
During her first 14 months at the helm Maile has quickly left a positive mark on the ANZ operations. She recently announced the bank was adopting a “scaled agile philosophy approach” across the entire org, a practice made popular by tech companies and their approach to product development, which in theory should create a nimble and collaborative working environment. This can only aid ANZ’s customer obsessed strategy whilst breaking down long established silos in the process.
Of note, Maile has recruited senior digital folks from a diverse group of industries to fill roles across People & Culture, Data and Digital Transformation General Management. All of who are very accomplished and skilled businesses people and happen to be female. Well done ANZ and Maile.
The progress at Energy Australia is equally commendable. The board is now comprised of 50 % female representation with a mix of folks from within the energy sector along with recent inclusions of non-executive directors Marina Go and Rebecca Dee-Bradbury. Both these professionals’ posses’ broad digital skillsets and senior marketing experience that only help realise Energy Australia’s ambitions to become the worlds best Energy Retailer.
By no means are these appointments the silver bullet that will guarantee success. Both EnergyAustralia & ANZ Bank need to ensure that the onboarding of these folks is seamless and they are given adequate support so they can positively influence change and ultimately improve performance. Way too many times the “digital or other people” come into an organisation but only to be let down by in fighting and obstruction.
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