How did you get your first role in the Recruitment industry?

I started working in Parliament House in Canberra. My first role was international protocol and public affairs, which gave me a life-long love of politics and international engagement!

What does a day in your role as Executive Branch Manager Communications and Engagement look like?

Lots of focus on my team! We work flexibly a number of days a week, so it’s very important that we stay connected and collegiate. We meet at the start of each day to talk through our challenges and what’s coming down the pipe in the days and weeks ahead. There’s also a bit of chat about food, wine, pets and travel….who knew!!

My focus is also on making sure I’m in touch with my peers across the organisation, and in touch with our external stakeholders. That internal and external connection is critical to the cohesive, informed and effective planning and delivery of communications and engagement programs that directly affect our community.

Having worked at several leading organizations, which position or organization has had the most positive impact on your career and why?

I worked for an amazing company, Acumen Alliance, for about five years. It changed my career. The culture in the company was incredible….we were valued for our minds and our skills and contributions, and encouraged to be innovative. The Chair, CEO and partners showed trust in their team, gave support when it was needed, and were generous with recognition for achievements. They also had an amazing “abundance” mentality, in the company and in their support for the community. I took these values and practices with me as I progressed my career, and to this day it’s the very best organisation I’ve ever worked in!

With experience living and working all over the world, how has your international experience influenced your career?

I’ve worked overseas a fair bit, in Germany, South Korea, China, the US, UK and France. Every place gifted me with exposure to unique cultures and practices, and I learned so much with each project. I think the main influences I’ve absorbed are the glories of diversities, inclusiveness and equality, to be unafraid of new experiences and directions, and to embrace opportunities when they present themselves.

What do you think are the most important transferable skills that you have developed?

Keeping pace with professional practices and skill sets is always very important as we move through our careers. Communications is no different in that regard to any other profession. But for me, as well as skills, it’s without doubt values and attitudes. If a person’s inherent values and their work ethic matches the organisation, their skills soon adapt to the particular nature of the company. I always seek to understand the culture of an organisation as part of considering an opportunity.

During your career in communications have you ever had a mentor? If so, how do you manage this relationship?

I’ve been very fortunate to have had wonderful supporters and mentors through my career. This is not rocket science…I try to make time to engage, and make sure that I’m listening and absorbing to the max! I want my mentors to know that I truly appreciate their time and interest…and hopefully they can see the benefits of their insights.

What’s been your greatest achievement or challenge?

Mentoring amazing people is one of my proudest achievements. Several times, I’ve been lucky to discover really talented people in my teams. It has been so exciting to work with them to create opportunities for them to develop, to build their confidence and to make sure their achievements are seen and rewarded. Seeing them flourish and advance…playing some small part in that…is one of the best feelings I have!

If you could give one piece of advice about developing a career in communications, what would it be?

Always be curious and imaginative, customer-focused and relevant! And love what you do! (Sorry, that’s two!! 😊)