KUCHING, Dec 12: State utility provider Sarawak Energy Bhd (SEB) continued to push for more female employees to take up leadership positions through outreach and mentoring activities, networking and sharing sessions as well as through forums and capacity building programmes.
SEB in a statement said the Sarawak Energy Leading Women Network (SELWN) brought together women leaders to share their career pathways with about 400 employees of SEB last Wednesday.
The company added the virtual chat session entitled “Discover the Leader within You” which featured SEB’s senior vice president for corporate services Siti Aisah Adenan who is also SELWN executive champion, Hibiscus Petroleum Bhd’s vice president for new energy ventures Dr Ts. Wei-nee Chen, and SEB’s general manager for corporate communication Peing Tajang who is also SELWN external stakeholders engagement co-lead as panelists.
SEB explained that the virtual session was moderated by LeadWomen chief executive officer (CEO) Dr. Marcella Lucas following opening remarks by SELWN external stakeholders engagement co-lead who is also SEB’s general manager for retail, Ng Shou Fui.
SEB’s group’s CEO Datu Sharbini Suhaili, group chief operating officer Lu Yew Hung, SEB’s senior vice president for human resource Dr Mak Met and the senior management team also joined the virtual session.
During the session, Siti Aisah said that greater diversity and inclusion at decision-making levels lead to more robust decisions.
“In promoting gender diversity, we are not talking about replacing men with women, but rather we are promoting a balance of competent men and women whose different approaches and perspectives can contribute to more considered decisions.
“Through SELWN and programmes like this, we want to ensure our younger female talent can learn from the different paths to success that our speakers took, to showcase role models and to encourage and facilitate more participation of our women employees in decision-making positions,” she said.
On a question raised regarding the perception that women leaders were more emotional, Dr. Chen felt that while this was a gender stereotype, she agreed that women can use their emotional intelligence effectively in their leadership roles.
She also pointed out that the attributes of a good leader are more important than their gender or age.
Dr. Chen commended SELWN’s efforts in leadership mentoring and providing support to women in overcoming challenges in a male-dominated power utility industry.
On the aspect of balancing career and personal responsibilities, Peing expressed her view that women should say yes to leadership opportunities and from there, build on their strengths and work on the gaps.
“Find your leadership style that suits your personality.
“Be credible and authentic throughout the journey, believe in yourself and most importantly, be excellent at what you do,” she advised.
Meanwhile, the session also highlighted the importance of an empowering network and support circle in progressing up the leadership ladder.
This was followed by a SELWN Women Empowering Series Workshop on ‘Imposter Phenomenon’, where the all-female audience were shown how to detect situations and attributes that would hinder their career development.
Meanwhile, SELWN was launched in 2017 to develop leadership competencies and capabilities of women employees of SEB and to maximise their potential by supporting their career development aspirations.
The company explained that the formation of SELWN was in line with Malaysia’s target of achieving 30 per cent women representation on boards and senior management team.
SEB outlined that its SELWN’s external relations workstream looks at best practices at national and regional levels for a broader understanding and application of inclusion and diversity in the company’s workplace.
In recognition of the company’s efforts, SEB said it received a platinum award for the Empowerment of Women for SELWN at the 11th Annual Global Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Summit and Awards 2019.—DayakDaily