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    We need to challenge the status quo to achieve gender equality

    Medibank's Shine awards

    Gender equality is an issue that is important to me both personally and professionally, not only as the CEO of Medibank, but as a Male Champion of Change and as a WGEA Pay Equity Ambassador.

    Last week, Male Champions of Change released an impact report, highlighting the results and insights so far on the journey to ensuring more women have leadership opportunities and achieve gender equality across the business community.

    Organisations signed up to Male Champions of Change have made great in-roads this year to improving female recruitment rates, pay equity and to ensuring that women’s voices are heard. And perhaps most importantly it’s great to see that 90% of these organisations are actively working to simply change the way they think about recruitment, talent and promotions.

    We’ve started a number of initiatives to help support women at Medibank. Our Hands Up program helps women to develop skills and confidence to put their hand up for promotions and leadership positions. And our recently launched partnership with Circle-In means that mothers can stay better connected with their team and the business while they are taking parental leave. It is programs like these that will help change businesses for the better.

    It’s important that businesses challenge the status quo, it’s important they call things out as they see them and listen to their people and, particularly, the women in their business. Communication is a key element to this, and at Medibank we provide our leaders with the tools and training to have open conversations within their teams and support from our People & Culture division to do this.

    Gender inequality in the workplace is not new, but there is more work to be done to ensure that everyone is given the same opportunities no matter their gender. I encourage you to read the report, see what a number of Australian companies have learned about the challenges in achieving gender equality and consider what you might be able to take away for your own companies and professional lives.

    Originally published on LinkedIn.

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