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Hugo Dorph: We are not changing anything just by talking about it

News October 12, 2021

He is a part of Solar’s Executive Board in a male dominated industry. But at home, men are highly under-represented. Meet Chief Commercial Officer Hugo Dorph, who is passionate about digital business development and about being a dad of four girls. He is also ambassador for diversity in Solar.

It might be difficult to see the common denominator for New York City and the small town of Vejen in Denmark. However, the shift from IBM and Maconomy to Solar back in 2014 was not something that scared Hugo Dorph. He has spent a big part of his career within IT and digital business development in the USA and is currently working on creating excellent digital customer experiences in Solar.

”Solar was first mover within our industry when it came to creating a mobile app. Since then, we have been first mover in many areas – also digitally,” he explains.

Setting a direction and creating strategies are still some of the tasks that motivate Hugo Dorph. He also has a focus on sustainability, which plays an even bigger role than previously.

”Digitalisation is constantly developing and the sustainability agenda will put an even higher pressure towards more documentation and less waste. Solar must continuously focus on seizing this opportunity.”

More women in top management
Hugo Dorph’s field as well as the industry in general is characterised by men. With four daughters at home, he is particularly aware of the challenges in relation to diversity that many companies are dealing with – including Solar.

”To me diversity is about broadness and creativity, because it provides us with other perspectives. As a father of four girls, the focus on female leaders is of course also something that is important to me,” he explains.
Many of the Line Managers in Solar are women. But the gap between them and top management is too big, Hugo Dorph has noticed.

”As a member of the Executive Board, I feel responsible for breaking the trend. We cannot just excuse ourselves by saying it is difficult. 50 percent of the population is female and the majority is very skilled, so we ought to do better,” he explains and refers to Solar’s striving towards 25 percent of women in the top management by 2025.

“One thing is wishing for more diversity. Another thing is to identify what holds us back. As an example, we aim for having women on our shortlist for leading positions every time. That is a step in the right direction. But it does not solve the problem.”

To speed up the process, Solar has formed a cross-border working group, who focuses on diversity in general and on making concrete initiatives to increase gender diversity. Hugo Dorph is one of the ambassadors.

”We want to create an inclusive workplace that encourages innovation and creativity. We need to figure out how to solve this challenge.”
However, it is also important that the female employees grasp the opportunity for promotion when it arises, he underlines.

”We need to make sure that the female employees feel included and that we don’t unconsciously discourage them. We must create a culture for everyone. As a manager, you need to be aware when some of your employees seek bigger opportunities – this includes women too.

Mostly men are working within industry and installation, but a recent meeting with a vendor was a revelation to Hugo Dorph; three out of four top leaders were females.

”If they can do it, so can we. It is important not to let the past hold us down – not as a company nor as a gender. But we cannot change anything just by talking about it.”

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