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Leadership Matters: May introduction from Marie-Louise Pearson OAM FIML, Chair of the Board

Welcome to Leadership Matters for May.

The IML AGM is at the end of May. Please take time to consider voting.

In February this year Rio Tinto published a comprehensive external review of its workplace culture, commissioned as part of its commitment to ensuring sustained cultural change across its global operations. The review was part of the work being undertaken by Rio Tinto’s Everyday Respect task force, which was launched in March 2021 to better understand, prevent and respond to harmful behaviours in the workplace.

Prepared with feedback from 10,000 staff, the report’s findings showed in the last five years:

  • Bullying and sexism are systemic across Rio Tinto worksites, with almost half of the people experiencing bullying.
  • 28.2% of women and 6.7% of men have experienced sexual harassment at work.
  • 21 women reported actual or attempted rape or sexual assault.
  • Racism is common across a number of areas, with the survey indicating people working in a country different to their birth experienced high rates of racism, and that 39.8% of men and 31.8% of women who identify as Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander in Australia experienced racism.

While these findings are shocking and a damning indictment on Rio’s culture, it also demonstrates a willingness from a relatively new CEO and leadership team to proactively and very publicly, change their workplace culture. Rio’s leadership will implement all 26 recommendations from the report.

The fact that Rio’s leadership sought to proactively commission the investigation, make it public, and document it’s response, I believe is a good example of leading with positive intent.  

Exploring intentional leadership is the focus in this month’s feature story ‘The Science of Intentional Leadership’. New Zealand Member, Chris Duggan MIML, shares her incredibly inspiring story with us about pivoting careers from high school teacher to charity CEO. Chris now leads a team of 35 who are changing the landscape of science education across New Zealand. She attributes her success to intentional leadership and leading with purpose and intent.

The IML ANZ team also sat down with Carolyn Butler-Madden to hear her perspective on achieving a purpose-led organisation. This article looks at some practical ways that leaders can bring their people on the journey of owning and living their organisation’s purpose.

‘The seven steps to becoming a happy and healthy leader’ explores how leaders have faced unrelenting pressure during the pandemic as they juggle the economic and psychological impact on themselves as well as those in their teams. In this article, Psychologist Margie Island, shares her seven steps on how leaders can intentionally focus on their own wellness to ensure that they are happy and healthy leaders.

Thank you for your ongoing support of the Institute and I hope the articles in this edition provide an insight into what intentional leadership looks like for everyday managers and leaders.

Please connect with the IML ANZ team and let us know what you need from us. We would love your feedback.

Be your best, Marie-Louise Pearson OAM FIML LIFE


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