Aust Cham Qantas

Austcham CEO Forum on Diversity, Inclusion, Women and the LGBT+

Published on 26th April 2017

I recently had the pleasure of attending the Austcham Women in Business Network event on the topic of diversity, an area in which Ambition is strongly committed to. Ambition is a proud sponsor of this event series and as such, it was a privilege to have Mr Alan Joyce, CEO of Qantas as the guest speaker.

Angela MacKay moderated the event in a lively and insightful discussion on the topic of diversity, and how this has played a great part in the biggest transformation of Qantas since it was privatised.

Alan, as a member of the Male Champions of Change, reflected on the best performance that his company has produced in its history and attributed this greatly to the diversity that he has within his management team which consists of two women business leaders and two men from the gay community.

Recognised as one of the world’s most influential gay business leaders, Alan is happy to be a role model for other gay men climbing the corporate ladder. He also has a compelling argument for all employers in that he believes a large part of his success has been a result of not restricting recruitment to one sector of the population such as heterosexual men (and women). By pro-actively encouraging recruitment within the LBGT community, as well as bringing in people from other industries, the cross-pollination of opinions, styles and backgrounds have made Qantas progressive and aided the record levels of customer satisfaction and employee engagement.

The road to the award for Airline CEO of the year, which Alan received in 2015 was not a smooth one, which was well documented in the press, but throughout his journey, Alan has maintained a staunch belief that diversity and inclusion is the way forward.

A firm advocate of Diversity and Inclusion, Ambition works proactively to maintain and develop this message within our culture and when we are working with and advising our clients and candidates.  If you would like to hear more, please join our 'Women with Ambition' LinkedIn Group which was launched in 2006. We regularly run events and provide insights and reports through email and our LinkedIn Group. We welcome participants to this group and are open to collaborating with organisations on joint events or white papers.