Essential Energy

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Placing value on inclusion and development.

Essential Energy is a state-owned electricity infrastructure company which owns, maintains and operates the electrical distribution networks for much of NSW. Workshops were held across 53 regional locations across NSW over two years.

What We Did

A-HA was engaged in 2018 to design and deliver a customised Inclusion workshop to increase cross-cultural awareness and open-mindedness in advance of a diversity hiring strategy being implemented by Essential Energy, which was targeted at employing a more non-traditional workforce – specifically First Nations people, women and the LGBT+ community.

A-HA worked closely with Essential Energy’s internal HR and OD teams to co-design a half day workshop aligned to Essential Energy Values + desired outcomes. A critical success measure was that the investment in the hiring of a diverse pool of new Apprentices was realised by way of new Apprentice retention in a positive workplace culture.

A-HA provided a pool of skilled facilitators who delivered 39 sessions across 29 locations at short notice. Due to the client’s extensive regional footprint, it was imperative that the facilitators understood the varied and often complex operating environments for each of the regions. We worked with the internal HR and OD team to create a tailored program for the different stakeholders + audiences including: depot leaders, regional leaders, HR + OD, as well as the Executive Leadership Team, made up of the CEO and his direct reports.

Due to the success of the 2018 roll-out A-HA was engaged in 2019 to design a second complementary workshop on appropriate workplace behaviours and building inclusive leadership which we ran in 24 different regional locations across NSW. In 2020 we were again engaged to roll out a third year of workshops however these were been put on hold due to COVID-19. We are now working with the organisation to build an alternative blended learning approaches for 2021 and anticipate delivering a program to 3000 employees online + 150 leaders face to face complemented by pre & online post learning.

The Results

We measured the impact of the sessions via participant feedback and were able to show an increase in diversity + inclusion awareness and capability in all key areas.


2018- Present
“In support of the recruitment of our 2018 Apprentice cohort, A-HA were recently engaged to deliver ‘Cultural Awareness Conversations’ across our regional footprint. Program content focused on diversity and inclusion in the workplace, with a particular emphasis on team and depot culture, whilst also reinforcing recently refreshed Corporate Values. A-HA was able to provide a pool of skilled facilitators, who demonstrated their subject matter expertise whilst delivering 39 sessions across 29 locations at extremely short notice. Due to our extensive regional footprint, it was imperative that the facilitators understood the varied and often complex operating environments for each of our regions, which A-HA were able to demonstrate a flexible approach which drove consistency across the program roll out.”
- Martin Minogue, Manager HR & Organisational Development
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