Men for Women: Three Revelations from Procurement’s Male Campaigners for Change

Can men fight the good fight when it comes to gender equality? They sure can, here are some inspiring examples…

Men for Women: Three Revelations from Procurement’s Male Campaigners for Change

When it comes to fighting the good fight for better gender diversity and inclusion, women are often doing the hard yards.

From the fact that the executive team of Our Watch (Australia’s pre-eminent organisation preventing violence against women) are entirely female, to the fact that women also make up most of the executive at WGEA (Workplace Gender Equality Agency), it seems like the ball is firmly in the female court when it comes to advocating for representation, safe workplace conditions, and overall equity. 

Fortunately, in procurement we’re doing things a bit differently. 

At one of our BRAVO sessions, we were inspired by the words of some of procurement’s male advocates for change, including Tony Megally, Director, Global Partnerships at The Faculty, Fajib Manoly, Senior Manager, Technology, Sourcing and Strategy at Transurban, and Euan Granger, Team Lead, Strategic Procurement at Soil Machine Dynamics. 

Our panel conversed about the inequities of working conditions for women, but also spoke to the importance of enacting change and actively supporting the cause. 

These were the top three takeaways from our male allies.

1. They acknowledge that women are treated differently

With the news that one in five men in the UK don’t believe that gender inequality still exists, it can be difficult to not feel despondent about the state of diversity.

Why don’t some men think inequality exists? Because they simply do not experience it – they don’t necessarily encounter, on a day-to-day basis, the double standards, lack of recognition, sexism and discriminatory behaviours that are commonplace experiences for women.

Fortunately, our procurement male champions of change do not fall into this category of ignorance.

In fact, Tony Megally, the Director of Global Partnerships at The Faculty, said that his eyes were really opened to the inconsistent treatment of men and women when his wife returned to work from maternity leave: 

“I really realised that women were treated differently when my wife returned to work from maternity leave. She came back to the workplace and her boss at the time said to her, ‘Well, you know what, you’re a mum now, you don’t need to work in a high pressure job and have teams of 100 people. Why don’t you just work on the phones and take it easy while you’re raising your family?‘”

Tony saw this treatment as fundamentally unfair. When he became a dad, he wasn’t being asked to do anything differently, so why should his wife?

He says: “It was really disappointing to hear her say that her boss was suggesting that she should take a backseat in her career.”

2. They see women as the great leaders we are 

One hugely frustrating (and totally wrong) stereotype is that women do not make great leaders.

Research shows that an alarming amount of people do not trust female leaders, and that many people still think that women do not have the qualities necessary to become leaders.

There are individuals and organisations out there, thankfully, that are fighting this stereotype.

For example, Euan Granger, Team Lead, Strategic Procurement at Soil Machine Dynamics, affirmed that when it comes to management and leadership, gender isn’t a cause for consideration or hesitation.

“Whenever I work with a new manager, their gender never even enters my head. It isn’t, ‘oh, that’s my new manager, she’s a woman.’ It is simply, ‘oh, there’s my new manager.'”

Furthermore Fajib Manoly, Senior Manager, Technology, Sourcing and Strategy at Transurban, believes that women have unique leadership skills that men don’t always have.

“I sincerely believe women are great leaders, especially with their ability to balance professional and personal leadership skills.

“I see that at home. I see that in my workplace. I see that with my mentors and some of the great female leaders I’ve worked for. They are extremely empathetic and they really value relationships.” 

3. They don’t just talk the talk, they walk the walk too

Frustratingly, there is often a chasm in the fight for gender equality between believing in the cause, and actually doing something about it.

This phenomenon is called being a ‘silent bystander’ and it applies to people in all situations, but especially men, where they see some kind of discrimination happening but don’t do anything about it. 

It goes without saying that while being well intentioned is a start, being a silent bystander doesn’t help the cause of gender equality whatsoever. 

Fortunately, there were none of these bystanders among the BRAVO male panel. They are making decisions and choosing to act, in order to make gender equality a reality. 

“Personally, I choose to challenge people to actually take action, rather than just talking about it,” Granger says. “I also encourage others to continue to call companies out who do a lot of talking [about equality] but don’t actually put the actions in place to back it up.”

Tony Megally, who currently works in partnerships but has previously worked in recruitment, says that he actively educates his clients on the importance of diversity.

“It is always part of my conversations with clients. I will always consult with them about why they need gender balance.”

Fajib Manoly reports that he encourages organisations to continually review the data and information to ensure that their diversity goals and initiatives are always up-to-date. 

“It’s very important for every organisation to review their policies and practices. Perhaps it’s employee exit interviews, perhaps it’s something else, but they always need to be looking for new information and data that will support further diversity and inclusion initiatives.’ 

So there you have it. Male advocates for change, we’re so glad you see what we see, believe in us, and importantly walk the walk when it comes to making gender equality a reality. 

Tony, Euan and Fajib’s panel discussion was part of our game-changing BRAVO program, a training and mentoring program specifically designed for ambitious women who want to advance their careers and drive real change. Find more information about our 2023 program by clicking the link for your region below.


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