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How failing up is the perfect way to plan for your future — Business Chicks

What gets you most excited about your job?

People. Specifically, the ‘people transforming lives’ in our health and knowledge precinct. I’m inspired by their work to promote it far and wide and to create and guide projects that will drive collaboration and enhance impact. People who are saving lives – pulling blood clots out of brains, developing a world-first rotary artificial heart, a vaccine for malaria. People who strive towards a cure for spinal cord injury. What’s not to get excited about?

You’ve said you have a passion to support ‘people transforming lives.’ How do you cope with setbacks and/or red tape in a role designed to help people?

Building a health and knowledge precinct is a long-term endeavour, both in terms of the hard infrastructure (buildings etc) and the talent ecosystem that makes things come alive. So, I would say you need passion strong enough to maintain patience! Our precinct is a partnership between the Queensland Government, City of Gold Coast, Griffith University and Gold Coast Health, so there is governance (and sometimes too much red tape) in getting things done, especially as we are relying on private sector investment also. You have to take a long-term view and understand that the benefits of collaboration come with limits on control.

How would you describe your leadership style? 

I like to be an example and mentor in our team, so a bit of a coach and cheerleader, or maybe a conductor – not so much to set the melody but make sure we aren’t all out of tune! A synthesiser would be a good description.

How do you look to encourage and support your team? 

Providing freedom with accountability generally works better than instruction I reckon. As someone who has worked in professional roles part-time, I really understand the meaning of being able to do ‘important work’ without necessarily having an ‘important title’ – everyone likes to feel valued.

What are you most excited about with this Movers + Breakers conference? 

The conference name is fabulous – I especially like the incorporation of Breakers – there are so many opportunities for positive disruption. I’m sure Emma Carey, author of The Girl Who Fell from the Sky, will be really inspirational. My colleague and friend Dr Dinesh Palipana OAM has also recently published his memoir ‘Stronger’ about his journey living with paralysis, which includes being named Qld Australian of the Year 2021. It is so wonderful to be able to learn these lessons about embracing life from people who have lost abilities and achieved so much.

Fast five faves on the GC

  1. Fave restaurant – Social Eating House, Broadbeach. I love tapas-style!

  2. Fave beach – The Spit, our dog Rufus loves it too.

  3. Fave walking track – you can’t beat Burleigh Headland

  4. Fave wine bar – Mr P P’s is a rooftop bar in Southport-  great food too.

  5. Fave spot to unwind – we live on a lake, so it’s pretty good at home. Around the lake at the back of HOTA is fabulous – you’re amongst the buzz of the city/arts and culture scene, but it’s serene.

Movers and Breakers is not your average conference. Each year we bring together 140 of our members for three days of extraordinary connection, learning, fun (a lot of fun!) and to hold space for you to be yourself. 

Movers and Breakers is an exclusive member-only experience and one of the most anticipated events on the Business Chicks calendar (the conference has sold out in just a few weeks year on year). Join us for a few days of magic with the best kind of people in one of Australia’s most beautiful places.Learn more here!

The imagination capital of Australia is all about combining everything that is globally known and loved about the Gold Coast with its purpose-built infrastructure to create memorable and extraordinary business events that can’t be replicated anywhere else in the world. Where else in the world can you indulge in breakfast onboard an ocean cruise while whale watching, then walk straight into your conference at a state-of-the-art venue before watching the sun set from our kilometres of golden beaches and end the day sipping a cocktail at a rooftop bar in the city at night? Only on the Gold Coast.

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