LEWAS Impact

TAQA’s Drive for Innovation with Inclusiveness

By Marije Van Koolwijk,

Vice President, Geosciences & Engineering, TAQA

As a company focused on technology and innovation, diversity and inclusiveness are key enablers to assist in development of new technologies, come up with new ways of working. It is essential to pave the road to a sustainable future. Without gender and cultural diversity and providing an inclusive framework, this road to success will be a long and effectively an impossible one. D & I is for any company instrumental and therefore a must have.

For TAQA it is more, it is a must do, it is an essential part of our strategy to deliver and sustain a successful future as Enabler of Energy and become employer of choice. This is demonstrated throughout the full organization as with the expansion of the TAQA extended leadership team with senior talent, hired for technical excellence and with different D & I background and therefore adding an alternative perspective. And with me, even adding more experience, as beside being European and a female, coming from a major international operator background, providing an insight into the mind and way of working of an service company clients.

What is the enabler for TAQA to a diverse and inclusive organization? It starts with hiring diverse talent. For example, in Saudi Arabia, we have a target to support hiring up to 25% of the new field/technical population from the freshly graduated females for example and to provide them with the best services/training possible to maximise their talent. This has to be supported with a dedicated learning program to develop talent without cultural and/or gender bias. Without talent development, we will not retain talent. The learning and development program TAWAFOK has been piloted in Saudi Arabia successfully and will be rolled-out to the rest of TAQA’s global footprint of operations in 2024. A key pillar of training is on the job training supported by classroom technical training. As illustrated in step-based progression, a Field Engineer Trainee (FE-T) is expected to become an Expert Field Engineer (EFE) in about 5 1/2 years. Goal setting with concise deliverables are motivating and drive performance for local talent because you see your growth plan which is supported with technical coaching.

Why is D & I a key enabler for innovation? It is simple, without diversity bias is created. Bias in the form of one way of thinking, one way of acting, one way of risk adaptation. In a diverse organization with an inclusive mindset, every opinion counts, is listened to and valued upon. It is a way of brainstorming where thoughts are voiced and lead to action, implementation of new ideas as well as inspire innovation. Bringing together people with different perspectives, experiences, and backgrounds to foster creativity and innovation. A key element for TAQA as enabler of Energy. Technical innovations that are so essential for the future, the future of sustainable energy. The future of the next generation.

What is TAQA utilizing to drive innovation with inclusiveness? Some of the measures are simple: make everyone in the organization feel welcome and valued. It also means creating an environment where people feel safe to take risks and experiment. Give employes the autonomy to make decisions and take action on their ideas while providing support and guidance to help people develop their ideas and move them forward. Recognize and celebrate successes to reinforce the value of innovation and inclusion, allowing behaviours to come part of our culture. And most important, sollicit feedback from employees on how the organization can be more inclusive and innovative to drive it throughout the whole organization as one TAQA. Focus on Diversity and Inclusiveness is an enabler for Innovation with people being a key value.

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