As a business consultant with a portfolio of ten valued clients, I have always valued the connection between my personal and professional lives. My name is Damien Attwood, and I founded EMPOWER Agency in 2018 after years of working in banking and finance. I want to share my story, emphasising the importance of inclusivity and diversity, both in the workplace and society as a whole.
Love and Equality
In November 2020, my husband, Dan, and I finally exchanged vows and celebrated our marriage. The legalisation of marriage equality in Australia in 2017 made it possible for us to take this important step. The freedom to marry the person you love is a fundamental right, and it marked a significant milestone for our relationship and countless others.
Being my Authentic Self at Work
Bringing my full self to work is not only a personal desire but also crucial for my overall well-being. At EMPOWER Agency, I founded a workplace that embraces inclusivity and diversity. I want everyone to feel welcomed, comfortable, and encouraged to express their true selves. This openness extends beyond superficial gestures, I volunteer as Treasurer on the Aurora Board, who boost resilience, and advocate for crucial change to attract more essential philanthropic funding to the LGBTIQ+ sector.
The Power of Allies and Support Networks
EMPOWER Agency culture encourages colleagues to speak up and step up for one another. This ingrained sense of support is truly empowering. I have witnessed firsthand the willingness of my colleagues to lend a helping hand, whether they are partners, peers, members of employee networks, or the HR team. There is an unwavering commitment to ensuring that all individuals feel heard, respected, and supported.
Breaking Free from the Shackles of Hiding
In the early stages of my career, I struggled with confidence and the fear of how people would react to my sexual orientation. Consequently, I wasted valuable energy on concealing my true self, diverting it from delivering my best both personally and professionally. However, as I progressed in my career and gained life experience, I adopted a “just do it” approach. I now openly discuss what is important to me. I understand that not everyone may be ready or able to take the same approach, and that is perfectly okay. Each individual’s journey toward self-acceptance is unique.
Creating a Welcoming Environment
This is precisely why I value the inclusive environment at EMPOWER Agency. The presence of visible and vocal allies ensures that individuals from the LGBTQIA+ community feel supported and empowered to bring their authentic selves to work. Having a workplace where diversity is celebrated creates a positive atmosphere for personal and professional growth.
Promoting Diversity and Inclusion
Promoting diversity and inclusion is a passion of mine. It is not only crucial for the success of our business but also vital for the communities in which we operate. At EMPOWER Agency, we believe in reflecting the diversity of our communities and creating opportunities for individuals from diverse backgrounds. Historically, certain individuals may not have had the same pathways to success in the legal profession, and it is our responsibility to challenge and change that dynamic.
The Journey Ahead
While we have made significant strides in promoting diversity and inclusivity, both at EMPOWER Agency and within our local community, there is still work to be done. I am proud to be part of a firm that is genuinely committed to making change possible. By fostering an environment where everyone can be themselves and thrive, we are paving the way for a more inclusive and equitable future.
Reach out to EMPOWER Agency today!