When we drill down to the crux of HR, it’s all about people, valuing them, knowing them, understanding what makes them tick. This blog post is a celebration of the human in HR where I share -potentially overshare – my life journey, from being the baby of three girls, to reluctant golf champion through to outsourced HR Director for incredible businesses Enjoy!
1975 – arrived in the world as the youngest of 3 girls who were 5 and 7 years older so my childhood was spent always being told what to do.
1980 – started to walk golf courses with my grandmother and mum, and my first job was picking up golf balls.
1982 – moved to Mid North Coast close to the beach. Career-wise I upgraded to caddying at golf.
1983 – started playing netball, but with much older sisters I resorted to throwing balls up against a brick wall as I never had anyone to play with. I also started playing basketball which I absolutely loved and still do. I won the most goals scored in a season.
1984 -had first brush with death – I received my first cabbage patch doll *shudders in horror*
1985 – fondest memories of my best friend who lived in my street were sleeping the night and waking up and sitting at her kitchen bar and her dad cooked us pancakes.
1987 – dragged out of bed in the cold at 6.30am to play a golf tournament with only two other women which made me a sure bet of winning a prize – the newest hair wand. Yay (eye rolling).
1988 – Started high school at the same time as the first episode of Home and Away screened. After school consisted of living at a friend’s house watching episodes religiously with 2 minute noodles our staple diet.
1989 – Both sisters left home, and it becomes just mum and I. If I wanted a day off school mum would just let me, giving me autonomy at a young age.
1990 – Part time job after school was at the best charcoal chicken shop on the Mid North Coast. To this day I’m an expert at cutting up a BBQ chicken and making bulk coleslaw and potato salad. Don’t come near me: I’m the only one that can do this at a get together. Used to bargain with the boss for extra money to come in early and fill the drink fridge so he didn’t have to do it.
1994 – Moved to Coffs Harbour for university (Bachelor business majored in HR but did a second major in marketing major) Cried on the phone to mum regularly and took the XPT home most weekends to spend time with my boyfriend. I boarded with a family for a couple of years that had a black poodle that used to sleep on my bed and leave its smell and hair. I worked three jobs to live and pay for university – highlight was A Ton-O-Fun Amusement Family Fun Park operating the small rides and standing by the water slides. This was the days of no first aid, no training, no anything really…
1996 – finished university and packed my bags to move to Sydney to start my career adventure. Fell in love with Coogee beach and the Spot at Randwick.
1997 – Discovered that long distance relationships don’t work and landed my first role with AMP working with the most amazing HR professionals. I could list about 10 people that I still keep in touch with regularly today. It was my first time being assessed using LSi tool which saw me break down and cry.
2002 – Overseas working holiday to UK chased up with the global financial crisis. Oh, so expensive! The only coffee was Starbucks, it was cold, wet and rainy and so I decided to spend all my last pennies traveling Europe for four months on my way home.
2003 – Back into career-mode with a move to the financial services sector, creating a leadership development program and experienced the DiSC assessment at work for the first time.
2004 -Married and divorced in a year. Some say Brittany Spears was married longer.
2007 – Early adopter of online dating and joined RSVP where I met my amazing husband. Still going well with two gorgeous children. On the career front I started a function in Remuneration and Benefits and Policies and set up and managed a women’s networking group.
2009 – Married with a honeymoon in Vanuatu and started an interest in property when we built an earthquake/cyclone-proof hut in paradise. At work I managed a small team helping build a remote working model for 600 nurses working remotely from home on 24 / 7 rosters. This experience was significant especially when COVID hit as I’d been working remotely and promoting it for over 10 years.
2011 – First baby born (son) and I took a career break with parental leave and the beginning of no sleep for many many years – not sure when that ends?
2013 – Second baby came along (girl) and so two little people and another year off – plus losing more sleep.
2014 – Moved to part time and managing work , kids , and family made that old view where people looked disparagingly at your resume of different roles went out the window.
2016 – Complete tree-change moving from Sydney to Jindabyne working with 120 women every day in an organisational culture that brought to life a ton of my love languages including hugs. Every day I received several hugs. They showed me what an awesome culture really is.
2019 – Decided to branch out again and do my own HR Consulting.
2020 – Second brush with death on Great Kepler Walk when I nearly slid down the side of a mountain, chased up by COVID plus lockdowns. Say no more. Walked into a cafe at Forster and ended up being referred to my next role over a coffee building, the HR function that got people through two years of lockdowns. While this was happening we moved back to Sydney managing work, businesses, kids and the rest.
2022 – Here I am, another adventure, embracing the struggles, challenges and opportunities of starting a business with constant coffee catch ups, networking events, setting up a website, learning xero, getting a coach, making a plan, not sleeping, drinking too much wine and eating too much chocolate.