Championing diversity, it’s in our interest

13th May 2024


I always appreciate feedback from these blogs and this week I was asked to consider penning a piece around diversity in the energy sector and the recent report from the Womens Utilities Network (WUN) and The Marketing Pod.

Their survey posing some real challenges to the industry, especially around unconscious bias of institutions. Now it is important to recognise that I have yet to meet any senior industry figure that has demonstrated ‘conscious bias’ against any particular group but is there a built-in bias against women within the utilities space? 

Let me state for the record, I took over an organisation that was over 100 years old and in that time, it had never had a female President. As we approach our AGM, I am proud that we will benefit from our third in the past six years. So I know things can change. 

This industry is a fascinating area in which to work; poses some huge challenges to those who want to make a difference and our senior leaders welcome people from all backgrounds to join us. But what does the WUN survey tell us? 

  • 50% of women in the utilities sector feel they are treated differently because of their gender. 
  • 41% of the women who responded to our survey feel their voice isn't heard at meetings and that they are interrupted when speaking. 
  • 49% of the women who responded to our survey do not believe their opinion is as valued at work as much as their counterparts. 
  • Almost half (46%) of the women who responded to our survey told us that they often hesitate to give their opinions or share ideas at work even though they know that what they have to say is valuable. 

As a result of this, almost a third are thinking of leaving the industry in the next few years as a result. I urge you all to read the findings of the WUN report here, and consider what you could do in this shared undertaking.