Member Q&A - November

AIM’s members come from a diverse range of industries and cover roles from team coordinator to CEO. Sharing management experiences helps all members to learn and develop. Each month we will feature some of our new members here along with their views on belonging to Australia’s largest professional management organisation.

Katherine Hamilton FAIM - Chief Executive Officer Advance Personnel

Katherine HamiltonWhy did you decide to join AIM?
Advance Personnel had long been a member of AIM and when I was approached to be an individual member and Fellow I thought it was a great opportunity professionally to become part of one of Australia’s leaders in management theory and practice peak bodies.

What is the best piece of advice you’ve been given in business?
I have always had business mentors particularly as a woman in business and the best piece of advice I received was from my current mentor Dr Nancy Belck who advised me to persevere. Perseverance furthers your business, your aspirations, your practices and your successes.

What is the best piece of advice you’ve given a colleague or an employee?
This is to women colleagues who feel they are not really good enough or are afraid of success. Find a mentor you admire and respect and form a relationship.

What are the biggest challenges facing businesses in your local area / industry?
The biggest challenge we face here locally and more broadly is the jobless economic boom. Even though Australia remains the envy of Western economies, structural reforms and employer concerns about employing entry level people means that many ordinary Australians are missing out on a chance for secure and meaningful employment. This is particularly difficult for disabled workers and jobseekers.

Graham Bargwanna FAIM - Chief Executive Scouts Australia NSW

Graham Bargwanna.jpgWhy did you decide to join AIM?
Scouts Australia NSW has been a Member of AIM for many years. A few months ago, AIM invited me to be a Fellow, and I was very pleased to accept their kind invitation. I have held leadership roles in the not-for-profit sector for over 20 years and know first-hand the importance of staying in touch with best practice in leadership and management, and making a personal contribution to improving leadership and management, especially in the not-for-profit sector.

What is the best piece of advice you’ve been given in business?
Most problems in business (and in life generally) arise from people not willing to hold “crucial conversations” when there is disappointment and/or disagreement. I’ve been studying an excellent resource from VitalSmarts on tools that help people hold “crucial conversations”, and to hold them well.

What is the best piece of advice you’ve given a colleague or an employee?
Strong leadership and good governance are essential in organisations (and in life generally), but the foundations for success have always been honour, integrity, and the truth. The truth will find its way to the surface.

What are the biggest challenges facing businesses in your local area / industry?
In the not-for-profit volunteer membership sector the biggest challenge is recruiting volunteer Members who can and will commit for the long term. As the expectations of the community, and regulatory requirements, grow in size and complexity, more time from volunteer Members is required. Worthwhile voluntary pursuits take a lot of people’s time - the very resource that is the most scarce.

Dr Tina Lambert AFAIM - Organisational Development Consultant

Dr.Tina LambertWhy did you decide to join AIM?
Some of the AIM NT council members recommended me as a potential speaker for Darwin and/or Alice Springs. These turn of events were very fortunate for me! This led to an exciting opportunity to speak in both places in July 2014 on the topic: Achieving More With Less. A bit of a thorny issue given that we often are looking for quick fixes and short-term solutions in organisations these days. In recognition of donating my time, AIM very kindly provided a 12-month membership that I am committed to renewing in 2015.

What is the best piece of advice you’ve been given in business?
We are not defined by our jobs. We are much more than that, so don’t get so attached that you cannot see the woods for the trees. You need to add value in whatever job you’re doing. So continually ask yourself the question: am I adding value? If you cannot identify the areas of “value-add” then you’re probably not seen as relevant.

What is the best piece of advice you’ve given a colleague or an employee?
Someone we knew for a very long time and was very stressed out and unhappy. The advice was this: short-term vent and then draw a line in the sand so you can move forward. Longer-term get some leadership coaching to increase self-awareness. And at the same time, find a job that makes your heart sing. Outcome: new job, new person, new career!

What are the biggest challenges facing businesses in your local area / industry?
We have very few teams that are high performing and have resolved their trust, conflict, commitment, accountability and results-oriented issues. This is a sad indictment of today’s workplaces. Teamwork is the one long-term sustainable and competitive advantage for organisations. Yet it continues to go unresolved and unfunded. It is acknowledged that yes, it can require levels of courage and discipline – and emotional energy - so we can become quite exhausted at times. The power of a team that is high performing however cannot be denied. This is when people come together and set aside their individual differences and needs for the good of the whole to accomplish the impossible.