A second-panel discussion was held on the third day of EGYPS 2023 activities during the Equality in Energy” Conference entitled: “Harnessing the power of change management for an agile culture”. The session was moderated by Sofija Janosevic and its participants emphasized that employees should be flexible and open to diversity. They explained that change begins at the top of the corporate hierarchy starting with the top management till it reaches junior employees adding that the top management must lead by example.

In this regard, Brandy Jones, Vice President of Human Resources at Apache, said that her company has selected a leader who was mainly appointed to create plans and develop strategies particularly training the employees and enhancing their skills. It has also created and developed a new website mainly directed to clarify the company’s main goal, its core mission, and its future vision for change

He further noted that a dialogue has been initiated between the senior management and their juniors through Human resource groups to closely follow up on their progress while providing advice for them when necessary. In addition, the senior managers have committed themselves to be attentive to their juniors’ concerns and expectations to learn more about their different cultures and backgrounds

For her part, Latifa Aal Said, Global DEI Director &TPS HR Director MENATI at Baker Hughes, said that her company pays special attention to attracting human cadres who can make a change, not just those who meet operational business requirements and responsibilities

Hence, Latifa stressed the importance for the employees to believe in change and diversity to move forward, noting that change starts by changing the company itself and it shall consequently be passed to its employees. Thus, everyone must change their way of thinking, and make sure that the employees’ concerns, dreams, and expectations are delivered to the top management and that their ability to express themselves is not suppressed.

Moreover, she noted that “Since I started working for this company 17 years ago, and as time passed, our primary task has become to ensure that employees understand the values and mission of the company, and it has become our responsibility to deliver the purpose of the industry, the importance of transformation, and respect for diversity. We care about attracting different cultures with skills.”

On the other hand, Edgar da Costa, Director of Finance, Procurement and Information, and Communication Technology, at ANPM, indicated that his corporate was built on four important pillars mainly; legal foreign workers, pointing to the need to legalize the role of foreign workers in companies.

He further stated that the second point is to ensure that workers in the field have a competitive spirit, as monotony negatively affects production, while the third point is the importance of providing scholarships for skilled and talented workers, as well as supporting local labor to be able to engage in work activities efficiently and effectively.

In the same context, Dr. Sherif Aboelgheit, General Manager of Procurements and Supervising HR Division at ENPPI, said that the biggest challenge facing diversity and change is the process of resistance, as the workforce fears change and thus increases its resistance to it, so it will not be easy to change this matter.

He pointed out that the human management at ENPPI is constantly working to change workers’ culture, urging them to change, and educating them about the desired benefit from it, to help them turn from resistance to support, so the acquired skills must be used in dealing with workers and changing their culture.

Aboelgheit stated that the leader’s role is the most important thing, adding, “If the leader believes in what he is doing and in the importance of change, his employees will automatically be convinced of this role.”

Celestina Raggi, Vice President of Human Resources for the Middle East and Africa at Emerson, said: “We look at the market and its needs, and the changeability and flexibility of employees. I have been working for the company in Dubai for two years, and despite the presence of the company in the Emirates, we did not have a single Emirati in the company. This does not achieve equality or diversity. Despite the great diversity of cultures in the Middle East, some people are not ready to accept this diversity and difference.”

For his part, Ahmed Farid, Regional Human Resources Manager at Shell, said that leadership determines the possibility of change, so the new Chairman of the Shell Board of Directors announced on his first day a change in the work plan because he learned from previous mistakes, which had a positive impact on the employees.

He pointed out that the company has an “Eco marathon” program, which depends on competition among students in the use of clean energy and the creation of models that enter into a competition to determine the best model for the transition to clean energy.

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