The Industry Leaders Fund was well known to The Detmold Group, as my CEO, Alf Ianniello, was a recipient two years prior. In hearing of Alf’s experiences of his course to Wharton University, USA I was compelled to apply for the ILF Grant to further my executive education to enable myself to be more effective in my new role of Group General Manager – Corporate Brands and Sales Australia and New Zealand, to attract greater levels of business to our manufacturing plants based in South Australia.

The application was an enjoyable experience of two written applications, a face-to-face meeting with Geoff Vogt and a panel interview with members of the ILF Board. The application process was also a great light bulb moment for me, as my resume read of my achievements but little of what I have put back into the community that has supported me well. This gave me an excellent opportunity to educate myself and pass this knowledge onto other young inspiring leaders and to give back to our community.

Mt Eliza Business School has consistently been rated as Australia’s leading Executive Education School and was my choice to study the course as a two-week live-in course at Mt Eliza and one week in Shanghai. This allowed me and other participants to fully immerse ourselves in the course and discuss business, political and social issues at length. The participants on the course ranged from bankers from Nigeria and New Zealand, miners from Western Australia to senior executives of major retailers from the eastern seaboard of Australia.

The course provided me with a wonderful grounding on business-critical issues, such as managing change, and developing better leadership styles, and also allowed each participant to bring their very own business issue, which we discussed at length amongst the group. This provided for very honest, direct and compelling feedback that provided clarity and solutions to once very complex situations.

The course covered a very exciting and relevant topic of big data and how businesses can use it to promote, advertise and attract customers to their businesses via the use of big data and the buying patterns of consumers in order to predict the future buying patterns of that consumer.

The networks of lecturers, participants and guest presenters has allowed for an excellent networking opportunity that I would not otherwise have been exposed to. The course participants meet regularly to discuss our businesses and to share ideas amongst ourselves.

The Detmold Group has benefited greatly from me receiving the ILF Grant and attending The Mt Eliza Senior Executive Leadership program, as I have been able to take back to my business key learning of project management and leadership styles. During the course, I was provided with feedback on my leadership style and given areas for improvement which I have used when working with my Management Team at The Detmold Group which has resulted in significant improvement in our business and people results.

The Industry Leaders Fund application and selection process is a great process to go through, and if you are thinking of applying, I encourage you to do so. The process and the course are time consuming, challenging  and require a lot of effort, but every second you put towards this process will be rewarded back  to you in multiples with what you are able to gain personally and professionally from the program.

I wish you every success in your endeavours of becoming an Industry Leaders Fund recipient and making South Australia a great place to do business.