The Role of a “Change Agent”
Mar 11, 2021
By Carol McGlogan
The positive impacts diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) provide are no longer debatable; DEI is smart for our industry and is the right thing to do for our employees. In fact, according to Deloitte, diverse companies enjoy 2.3 times higher cash flow per employee. Gartner found that inclusive teams improve team performance by up to 30% in high diversity environments. In a BCG study, companies with diverse management teams had a 19% increase in revenue compared to their less diverse counterparts.
Advancing DEI awareness and building programs to achieve this is a key strategic goal for EFC. We recently became a “Change Agent” sponsor of BCEA’s Diversity Equity and Inclusion (DEI) program, an initiative to build inclusive workplaces and address barriers for racialized communities to secure and retain employment in our industry.
Our role as a change agent for this program is important. There are several definitions for this role, including “a person or group that works on a change program,” “a person or thing that encourages people to change their behaviour or opinions,” and “a person from inside or outside an organization who helps an organization transforms how it operates.” In EFC’s and BCEA’s case, we are transforming our industry to be more diverse and inclusive.
At the same time, many of us are parents and we want the best for our daughters and sons. We encourage them to break glass ceilings and strive for their dreams in hopes that doors will be open and they will be treated fairly as their authentic selves. In this same manner, it is our role as industry leaders to pave the way for the new generation who will make a positive impact on our industry. This is not just lip service; it requires a change in policy and practices to effectively realize a positive change.
As a “Change Agent” sponsor of BCEA’s program, EFC members have free access to the robust education offering on various subjects as it relates to DEI. Knowledge is power, an informed audience will be better equipped to lead this new change. At the same time, EFC has an HR Network that meets quarterly, and D&I is a standing item that is covered by the group to help members develop and improve their DEI initiatives.
EFC has also created a women’s network, which focuses on professional development, empowerment and lifestyle. Our latest national Women’s Network webinar featured several accomplished women in our industry who shared insights on building their careers, changes in the industry and lessons learned. We also had a few men attend this event, and we would like to see this participation grow, as men need to be part of the conversation.
EFC and BCEA can help educate and inspire this industry to embrace diversity, equity and inclusion. We embrace the role of change agents for our industry; however, the ultimate responsibility rests within our membership as they become change agents for their own businesses. We encourage you to roll up your sleeves, educate yourself on the concepts and programs, and transform your business to be more diverse, equitable and inclusive so you can become more competitive and a driver of change in the electrical industry.
Carol McGlogan is President & CEO, Electro-Federation Canada.