Professionally, I look to a number of people as my role models. My list of well-known role models that I aspire to have some or all of the characteristics of include: Richard Branson (not to be cliché), Oprah (again cliché I know), Naomi Simson, Jamie Oliver, Janine Ellis, and Ann Sherry.
One woman who has been an inspiration to me for the past two decades is Ita Buttrose. Ms Buttrose possesses so many of the characteristics that I admire and would love to call my own.
The first time that I was privileged to be in the presence of Ms Buttrose was around 15 years ago at that National AHRI Convention in Melbourne. I was enthralled by Ms Buttrose’s account of her working life, including the obstacles she had faced (as a woman and mother) in her career, the challenges of working with the Packers, and her amazing achievements at a young age in the cut throat world of newspapers and magazines.
Of course I remember the ground-breaking introduction of the male centrefold at Cleo magazine. Just one of Ms Buttrose’s innovative ideas to rise higher.
What inspires me most about Ms Buttrose are her following characteristics:
- Intelligence – Ms Buttrose epitomises the person who has succeeded by being clever, articulate, diplomatic, and ambitious.
- Tenacity – As a woman the tough times Ms Buttrose faced early in her career make most of current day “glass ceiling” challenges appear minor.
- Pioneering – On many fronts as a media executive, woman, and community leader, Ms Buttrose has broken down the barriers for others to follow.
- Style – Ms Buttrose is always meticulously, beautifully and professionally presented – hair, make-up and clothes. A characteristic that is somewhat lost in a world of Kardashians.
- Benevolence – Ms Buttrose is generous in dedicating herself to worthwhile causes such as the national Ambassador for Alzheimer’s Australia.
- Calmness – After meeting Ms Buttrose in person, the other characteristic I would add to my list is the ability to exude calmness. This is a characteristic I have been striving to improve my entire life.
I must take this opportunity to thank Victoria Beedle of Alzheimer’s Australia (Qld) for inviting me to attend an hour of pre-event drinks with herself and Ms Buttrose. A dream come true for me.
Would love to hear who your role model is, and what characteristics of their’s you aspire to possess.
Written by Claire Harrison, Founder of Brisbane HR consulting and employer solutions outsourcing firm Harrison Human Resources www.hhr.com.au.
Claire Harrison is the Founder and Managing Director of Harrison Human Resources, a flourishing HR consulting business that sprouted in 2009 from Claire’s passionate belief that inspiring leaders and superstar employees are the key success factor to any business. With over 20 years’ experience, Claire has worked as a HR Director of multi-national organisations, as a Non-Executive Board Director, and a small business owner. Claire’s corporate career includes working with companies such as BHP, Westpac, Fonterra and Mayne Nickless.