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DIY Leadership? Time to do it your way!

Image: Guests were thrilled to create and take home their own terrariums!

‘Authentic Leadership’. We know it’s the best way to lead – for those around us and for our own sanity. So why is it challenging? How does being an authentic leader help us to better manage work and ‘life’ for ourselves and our team? These were the questions posed at NAWO’s October VIC Quick Bite, ‘ DIY Leadership? Time to do it your way!’ , which was generously hosted by Bunnings and attended by 80 guests. Thanks to Carina Brewster, HR Manager – Australia, Asaleo Care and NAWO Victorian State Committee Member, for providing this recap of the event…

Bunnings Port Melbourne recently hosted a Quick Bite event centred around the learning theme ‘Authentic Leadership‘.

The event kicked off with a Bunning’s rite of passage – a sausage sizzle on a gorgeous Spring day. The networking was ripe, prompted by the delicious food, generously cooked by Rotary Club Port Melbourne, and a good dose of Vitamin D.

Participants were treated to a privately hosted tour of the Bunnings Building Solutions Studio. The studio is dedicated space for Bunnings Commercial customers, Architects and Designers to explore new product ranges and innovative whole-of-build and fit-out solutions.

Everyone got their hands dirty (literally!) and created terrariums to take home, which were a very generous treat from the team at Bunnings. These activities really broke the ice and allowed participants to work alongside each other and make some new connections.

The keynote speaker David Attrill, General Manager Analytics and Digital, was an inspiration. David’s openness about his life, career challenges and family was warm and allowed those in the room to feel like we really got to know the man he is.

Through his engaging storytelling he shared some great tips on how to keep it authentic. Some key points included:

  • Truly listen. Only by being genuinely open to feedback will you learn to improve.
  • Integrate your life. This is different from work-life balance. It’s about making work and life work as one.
  • How others see you creates perceptions which can be hard to crack, being aware of this is crucial to ensure people get to know the ‘authentic you’.
  • Identify what you want to be known for, what your personal brand is and stay true to it.
  • Storytelling is the most engaging way to deliver a presentation. People typically relate to stories and when you share it makes your brand more personable.
  • Come up with a purpose as a leader and hold yourself accountable to it.

Overall his message was being true to your brand, what you stand for, and your purpose will put you in good stead to become a more authentic leader.

David also recommended reading ‘Hooked’ by Yamini Naidu & Gabrielle Dolan for more tips.

Left to right: David Attrill, Linda Whitworth, Loreen Peak and Colleen Starick from Bunnings, and Carina Brewster from Asaleo Care

David’s tips to become a more authentic leader were reinforced by a personable panel of speakers which included Soula Skoutas – Learning & Design Lead, Loreen Peak – National Business Development Manager and Linda Whitworth – Manager Team Assist. The questions came thick fast from the audience.

The panel shared what being an authentic leader meant to them which included:

  • relating to your team and sharing information about yourself
  • realising that showing vulnerability is not a weakness – you can’t be brilliant at everything
  • know who you are and what your strengths and values are
  • know who you’re not and be genuine and challenge yourself every day.

Overall the openness, insight and interest David and the panel have in personally working towards becoming even more authentic leaders was clear. The practical tips, advice and personal stories they shared were invaluable for all who attended.

Thank you to the team at Bunnings for hosting this event. In particular David Attrill, our panelists, and Colleen Starick, Diversity and Inclusion who was instrumental in making the day such a success.



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