Champion of cultural change

Published on Ms Harriet Pointon Mather (author)

Topic(s): Culture, Leadership, Diversity and Inclusivity

Commander Gregory Davison of the Aircraft Maintenance and Flight Trials Unit in HMAS Albatross, says Navy people should celebrate the progress our service has made in promoting a better culture in recent years. (photo: )
Commander Gregory Davison of the Aircraft Maintenance and Flight Trials Unit in HMAS Albatross, says Navy people should celebrate the progress our service has made in promoting a better culture in recent years.

Building the best team possible through means of respect, diversity and inclusion is among the top priorities for Commander Gregory Davison.

The Officer-In-Charge at Aircraft Maintenance and Flight Trials Unit (AMAFTU) at HMAS Albatross has served over 30 years in the Royal Navy and Royal Australian Navy, and championed a wealth of cultural change throughout his career.

“I joined the Royal Navy when women were not allowed at sea and homosexuality was forbidden, and I had friends who left the Navy due to their orientation. There were terrible attitudes throughout the organisation to diversity and change,” Commander Davison said.

“As a young officer, my thinking at the time wasn’t very evolved but excluding people for being different didn’t sit well with me.

“It was at odds with my values and it didn’t create a strong and successful team because there was no variation in perspective or thinking.”

Years later, and now serving with the RAN, Commander Davison has championed change within the AMAFTU.

“When I first posted into the position, the unit was diverse in a number of other ways except gender - there were no women in the unit,” Commander Davison said.

“I engaged the posters to select women to post to the unit and encouraged inclusivity in the team. The positive change in the unit was measurable.”

Commander Davison has also supported a transgender member within his team, encouraging his unit to build an accepting and supportive environment, of which he is particularly proud.

“It is an incredibly difficult path and an enormous struggle for transgender members, so I’m thankful our organisation is forward thinking and encourages diversity and the support of all personnel. We should celebrate our progress,” Commander Davison said.

“Ultimately, it takes a prolonged campaign to evolve culture and promote discussion to demystify areas of misunderstanding or ignorance. None of us are perfect so it takes effort.

“The fact that we have these conversations and still need to advocate for inclusivity is an indicator we still have a way to go, but I am very committed to playing my part in progressing these attitudes.”

Commander Davison’s progressive leadership and drive to educate himself and others regarding the respect of all genders and his dedication to creating a workplace that is respectful has directly contributed to the retention of members in Navy and the success of his team.

“Diversity brings strength and there is a place in a team for everyone. It is beholden on all of us to include those people as part of that team,” Commander Davison said.