InterEngineering | Dr Mark McBride-Wright On LGBTQ+ In Engineering

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James Kenealey

by James Kenealey on

    MORSON BLOG | 5 MIN READ

  • Morson hosted the North West Diversity Forum at head office in May 2019

  • We spoke to Dr Mark McBride-Wright, founder of EqualEngineers and InterEngineering and expert in LGBTQ+ issues


In May 2019, Morson hosted the NorthWest Diversity Forum along with Manchester Airport Group (MAG) and Clear Company. The event bought together a number of individuals from organisations like JLL, Shop Direct and Royal London to share key learnings and best practices.

Among the guests was founder of EqualEngineers and InterEngineering, Dr Mark McBridge-Wright, an expert in LGBTQ+ diversity.

We spoke to Mark about setting up InterEngineering and his thoughts on LGBTQ+ issues within the engineering sector:


When did you decide to set up InterEngineering?

I set up EqualEngineers in 2017 to connect inclusive employers with diverse talent and technology.

I used to work as a tech Safety Engineer in industry and in 2013 after I’d finished my PhD, I got interested in diversity and inclusion, but I realised that the conversation around diversity and inclusion was very skewed towards cisgender women in engineering. Being a gay man, I thought there was a need for an organisation that would provide a focus on sexual orientation and gender identity specifically. It’s a hidden identity and it’s something that’s a bit awkward to talk about so I felt like it needed that spotlight.

I set up a professional network called InterEngineering. That organisation is now five years old and we’ve got about 1,000 engineers in our membership. We’re active in five regional groups across the UK, one of which is here in the North West and I have about 20 engineers that support me with the running of the organisation.

What sort of things does InterEngineering do?

We do outreach to schools and speak at universities. We get invited by LGBTQ+ university societies to sit on panels and talk at pride events. That’s where my network of volunteers will give up their time to talk about their career as an engineer and try and encourage them to move into engineering rather than banking or any other highly numerate profession.

What are the biggest challenges facing the engineering sector in terms of diversity?

I think the biggest challenge that the engineering sector faces is overcoming the ‘them and us’ culture that’s so pervasive in all our organisations – the mindset of the majority engineer that thinks there’s some threat from the advancement of underrepresented groups, that they’re going to lose their job potentially or forego a promotion because we need to create more equality. I think we need to get to a place where people realise the business benefits that diversity brings – financial and increased performance – but also on a team level. I think we get caught up in this ‘us and them’ culture and it can stall us in making any progress.

That’s why, cornerstone to how I do my consultancy is linking diversity and inclusion to health, safety and wellbeing, in particular mental health. Helping men be vulnerable in the workplace and women be assertive in the workplace. It’s having the space where we’re not confined to the norms of the gender we are and have a working environment where people can just be themselves. I think to achieve that we need to strategically work at the mental health and wellbeing place and we’re only just starting to do that in engineering.

Find out more about our commitment to diversity across sectors here

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I am currently working with one of the UK's leading engineering contractors who require the services of a Project Engineer to undertake a portfolio of data cabling projects across their MOD sites in Portsmouth.As a Project Engineer you will successfully plan and control day-to-day activities in support of customer projects, in order to deliver them to the time, cost, quality and customer satisfaction objectives as defined by the Project Manager. You will be required to:Supervise field-based staff and subcontractors as required.Demonstrate appropriate Health and Safety leadership to ensure that the safety first and foremost message is visible and alive throughout any activities carried out.Ensure adherence to policies, processes and proceduresEnsure under direction, all works comply with standards and to meet and exceed client expectations, as well as the requirements to meet/exceed international standards and manufacturers installation guideline systems.To provide leadership for the project delivery team and to maximise the potential of the team and the individuals within.To participate within bid activity; as requested by the senior management and to work in conjunction with the Business Development department and in line with Focus Win processes.Aid with input in the preparation of the business plans and budgets. Based on the initial contract parameters and objectives. Seeking opportunities to suggest actions which maximises profit on the project.To provide appropriate input to all monthly reviews in line with business procedures to ensure that the management team have full knowledge of the completion and financial status of the project.To manage all related activities to the successful completion of the projects. In line with agreed quality and commercial plans to achieve targets within agreed timescales and cost constraints.Ensure that positive relationships are maintained with the customer through efficient delivery of projects with a view to optimising future opportunities and profitability.Ensuring design and installation meets internal and client specifications and statutory requirements The right candidates will have:Project Engineering experience on MOD Data Cabling projects.Current SC Clearance or have previously obtained this.SMSTSFirst Aid For more information on this role, please contact Scarlet Wilson on 01617071516.

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I am currently working with a leading engineering contractor that require the services of a Project Engineer to undertake a portfolio of data cabling projects across their MOD sites in Portsmouth.As a Project Engineer you will successfully plan and control day-to-day activities in support of customer projects, in order to deliver them to the time, cost, quality and customer satisfaction objectives as defined by the Project Manager. You will be required to:Supervise field-based staff and subcontractors as required.Demonstrate appropriate Health and Safety leadership to ensure that the safety first and foremost message is visible and alive throughout any activities carried out.Ensure adherence to policies, processes and proceduresEnsure under direction, all works comply with standards and to meet and exceed client expectations, as well as the requirements to meet/exceed international standards and manufacturers installation guideline systems.To provide leadership for the project delivery team and to maximise the potential of the team and the individuals within.To participate within bid activity; as requested by the senior management and to work in conjunction with the Business Development department and in line with Focus Win processes.Aid with input in the preparation of the business plans and budgets. Based on the initial contract parameters and objectives. Seeking opportunities to suggest actions which maximises profit on the project.To provide appropriate input to all monthly reviews in line with business procedures to ensure that the management team have full knowledge of the completion and financial status of the project.To manage all related activities to the successful completion of the projects. In line with agreed quality and commercial plans to achieve targets within agreed timescales and cost constraints.Ensure that positive relationships are maintained with the customer through efficient delivery of projects with a view to optimising future opportunities and profitability.Ensuring design and installation meets internal and client specifications and statutory requirements The right candidates will have:Project Engineering experience across MOD Data Cabling projects.Current SC Clearance or have previously obtained this.SMSTSFirst Aid For more information on this role, please contact Scarlet Wilson on 01617071516.

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