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YTM Raja Dato’ Seri Eleena is an inspirational and well-known face of women in Gamuda with many important roles – she is our director, a lawyer, an entrepreneur, a princess, and has been the Gamuda Women Empowerment Network (GWEN) patron since 2018.
In the spirit of the International Women’s Day (IWD) celebration on 8 March, we sat down with Raja Eleena on Valentine’s Day to hear her reflection on how Gamuda has grown in terms of diversity across our workforce and the board over the years, as well as her personal take on gender inclusion.
This year’s IWD global theme, #BreakTheBias has been a timely call for both women and men to come together and value each other’s contributions.
There is so much women can bring to the table and contribute to the workforce. Women are dedicated workers and a force to be reckoned with because of their innate ability to multitask, while being expressive, practical, reliable, determined and nurturing.
As an employer, we want to bring the best out of every employee and reap these great qualities of women to achieve a win-win situation for all as we continue to march forward and contribute to nation-building.
In Gamuda, we are committed to build a successful community within our organisation which entails joint efforts and smart working partnerships amongst employees.
Gamuda has always been a forward-thinking leader in driving family-friendly policies and initiatives at the workplace. Being mindful to the many challenges faced by Gamuda women, we have extended maternity leave and flexible work arrangements to support the needs of working families. I am happy and proud to state that last year, we appointed more women at the senior management level and provided remote working assistance to further support our employees.
These efforts have augured well and bore fruits in increasing women participation in our workforce from 29% in 2019 to 35% in 2021. Many leadership positions across the Group are currently headed by women. While women representation at the Board level stands at 26% in Malaysia’s top 100 public listed companies, we have increased that ratio to 43% in the last three years. This indeed is a real tribute to the worth, virtue and effectiveness of women in Gamuda.
In Australia, Victoria has mandated for women to make up 35% of management roles in public projects. Their government has also committed to reducing the gender gap in workforce participation by 25% in 2025. Hence, our vision to improve women representation across the Group is well aligned.
Today, we are given more opportunities to develop and perform our best regardless of gender. With so many exciting projects and plans ahead of us, we need both women and men in our workforce to seize the given opportunities and work collaboratively.
YTM Raja Dato’ Seri Eleena
Non-Independent Non-Executive Director, Gamuda Berhad
Admittedly, the COVID-19 pandemic has presented us with the challenges of navigating between remote working and family duties. It is clear that remote working will manifest into the endemic phase. Hence, we need to adapt to it – by creating a conducive working space for ourselves, staying focused and disciplined, and maintaining social interaction with our colleagues.
As much as we want to contribute, women cannot work on everything alone. While we can prioritise work duties and explore the best arrangement, we will also need a good support system. Communicating about the help we need and finding a balance to share family responsibilities with our partner will bring the best out of both parties. Thus, we must appreciate all the scarifies made by women.
Married or not, women need to have financial independence to be able to stand on their feet. Despite challenges, we women need to stay true to our aspirations, desires and dreams. We must be determined to find a successful version of ourselves. Over the years, female leaders of our times have paved the path for the next generation of women to take the stage.
Advancing our overseas expertise
Great news! Gamuda Australia, in a consortium with Laing O’Rourke, has been appointed by the New South Wales Government to deliver the AUD$2.16 billion Western Tunnelling Package (WTP) on the Sydney Metro West project, which will support a growing city and deliver world-class metro services to more communities.
We are proud to be part of this project that will transform Western Sydney, providing fast and reliable underground railway connections between Greater Parramatta and the Sydney CBD.
Our Singapore team has also been appointed to deliver the SGD$467 million Defu Station and Tunnels, which is part of the Cross Island Line Phase 1. This marks our second infrastructure project foray in the Lion City.
We look forward to be part of Singapore’s 15-year generational infrastructure upgrade plan, providing local employment opportunities and expanding our international footprint in this close-to-home market.
India has big green hydrogen plans? The country wants to produce five million tonnes (half the European Union’s production target) of the zero-carbon fuel by 2030 to meet its climate goals.
Australia’s biggest coal-fired power plant will shut in 2025? It is seven years earlier than scheduled, due to an influx of wind and solar power that has made the coal plant uneconomic to run.
Japan has built its first hydrogen train? East Japan Railway Co will begin testing the hydrogen-fuelled train in a step towards becoming a carbon neutral nation by 2050.
As a Group, we pledge to conduct our business in a sustainable manner by tackling climate change and establishing limits to our carbon emissions.
Need a refresher on Gamuda Green Plan?
Click on the pillars.