Managing Director | Endurance Financial Pty Ltd
What do you do to switch off?
Challenge myself in other ways. I compete in Half Ironman Triathlons – training is helping me achieve the art of mindfulness as it’s about the only time I truly switch my brain off from my clients.
Quote you lead by?
It’s too hard to choose just one, my two favourite are:
- Life isn’t measured by the number of breaths we take but by the number of moments that take your breath away
- Don’t stumble over something behind you
Tell us about a person who has had a tremendous impact on you as a leader, and why?
I don’t have to think for even a second about this. Dan O’Dea – my manger at Westpac. He taught me to believe in myself. He saw something in me that took me a long time to see. And he helped facilitate this by coaching me in the areas I needed help with – and he gave me the opportunities to practice them. I wouldn’t be where I am today if it wasn’t for him.
What are your non-negotiables for thriving in business and life?
You have to be passionate about your choices. Lead by example (try being a mum to two teenage girls and not standing tall) and show the world you care. If you aren’t passionate – you need to look elsewhere “the things you are passionate about are not random – they are your calling”. You have to share yourself with others, you have to be real.
What motivates you to be a better leader?
My girls. Women. I want them to experience a world where women truly have a voice and are not judged on their looks (check out the Instagram feeds of pro women vs pro men in triathlon) but on their abilities, achievements and BRAINS. If I stand up and share my story and how I have persevered – maybe – just maybe I will inspire or empower another woman to take a step forward.
CEO & Founder | No Ceiling, Just Sky Institute
What advice would you give to an emerging leader?
The best thing you can learn is how to address situations in the moment — from nipping potential crises in the bud before they blow up, to taking advantage of an opportunity that might arise when you least expect it. I call it “dancing in real time” with whatever unfolds. That can only happen when you are totally present to everything outside yourself.
What qualities do you feel the best leaders possess?
- How to truly listen to perspective outside your own
- How to bring the best out in those around you.
- Creating an environment of collaboration, innovation and learning.
- Giving appreciative feedback so everyone (including yourself) can course correct.
What do you do to ensure you continue to grow and develop as a leader?
Continuously learn. I take courses outside my immediate field, go to conferences in areas that expand my thinking so I can bring a broader knowledge and perspective to my clients every day. I read everything and anything that shows me more about human behaviour, engagement, innovation creativity.
What is the biggest challenge facing leaders today?
The pace by which we operate. We are so busy keeping up or catching up that leaders don’t create the space to think, make the right choices, and create something truly meaningful.
Quote you lead by?
“You can’t do everything you’d like to do. You must hold on to some things and let go of others. Learning to make that choice will be the best lesson you’ll ever learn”
Dr. Sally Creswell Hirsch
CEO | Tracker Apps
What is your definition of a good leader?
A good leader is someone who listens and cares deeply about their team.
What podcasts are you listening to?
I’m always fascinated by the themes and stories on This American Life. Great for inspiration as well as a mental break from business.
Favourite book you have read this year?
A book that I read usually once a year is Chris Hadfield’s ‘An Astronaut’s Guide to Life on Earth.’ Fascinating insights into how teams work in extraordinary conditions.
Where do great ideas in your organisation come from?
Everywhere! Employees, contractors, customers, managers, friends… Great ideas emerge when people feel trust and encouragement to be creative, and not afraid of failure.
Quote you lead by?
“Do something.” The desire to achieve perfection can paralyse an organisation. Doing something, trying something, even if it’s a minuscule effort or step, helps an organisation develop and grow.