Vanessa’s inspiring story is one of vision, determination, integrity, hard work and overcoming severe adversity, personal responsibility, discipline, growth, emotional intelligence, balance, compassion and giving. Her successes as an award winning social entrepreneur, brand and built environment strategist and ultra-endurance athlete have privileged her with the credentials and flexibility to now support others. She offers strategic, workplace, management, life and health/wellness mentoring to anyone in governance, business, leadership or influence. Her mentees are those looking to improve their organisational and/or personal performance and well-being in an agile, forward thinking, ethical and sustainable fashion. She brings to them an open mind, listening ear, extensive academic, professional and lived experience (including of trauma) and a willingness to both encourage and challenge. Vanessa is known as a straight talker and is often engaged as a board advisor, conference speaker and tertiary education guest lecturer.
For over 16 years Vanessa has been the Managing Director of Forward Thinking Design (www.forwardthinkingdesign.com.au); a Certified B Corp social enterprise, which she founded.
Forward Thinking Design is one of the most awarded brand strategy, stakeholder experience, fitout design & project management studios in Australia. The firm consults to leadership across restaurants and hospitality, retail, services, workplace, health/fitness, sporting club and community venues. It specifically exists to support fellow organisations with social, ethical and environmental impact values at their core and the business’ profits are retained to finance the provision of pro bono and reduced fee services to charities and social enterprise.
She is the Diversity and Inclusion Chairperson of BLocal Sydney, Australia (B Corporation business community) and an activist for equality, environmental sustainability and improved ethics in business and society. As a sufferer and survivor of serious illness she is an Ambassador for Polycystic Kidney Disease Australia, Member of the AKTN Scientific Committee and Co-Chair of the NSW BEAT-CKD Consumer Advisory Board.
Previously she was the Junior Vice President of the NSW Division of the Australian Shop & Office Fitting Association (ASOFIA), a committee on which she served for many years. She holds a Bachelor of Design (Hons) – UNSW, a Postgraduate Diploma in Museum Studies – Deakin and is a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Directors Company Directors Course.
Vanessa holds a Fastest Known Time ultra trail running record and previously represented Australia in triathlon. She has been profiled in several books, national print media, on radio, TV and podcasts. She is a strong promoter of individual and collective empowerment, responsibility, achievement and well-being.
if you need friendly, firm and focused support to either build yourself, your business or your team I can be there supporting you and your team as needed
I started my career majoring in environmental science and going to law school with the intention of becoming an environmental lawyer. While I have practiced to some degree in that field, my career has brought me across the world, including Mexico, Argentina, the Northern Mariana Islands, the Philippines, Hawaii, Arctic Alaska and Russia.
In 2018, I completed a Ph.D. at the University of Hawaii-Manoa how Alaska Native Villages are adapting to climate change and how laws and planning help or hinder. Much of my work now involves legal, planning, and logistical work with these communities on adaptation and other community challenges. The other substantial part of my work involves mediation, particularly for families with children.
I am passionate about helping people overcome whatever life issues they may be experiencing; I am a compassionate and caring sounding board for you; I’ll help you discover the underlying greatness you may have inside you; I’ll help show you how to embrace the shitty situations life may throw at you and how to come out the otherside with strength, courage, fortitude and a smile.
Hi, I am ex military officer turned business man; and would like to train others in the fields of business management, leadership and entrepreneurship. It will be a pleasure to assist all those who want to grow across the globe.
Kia Ora Mentees,
Believing that you should always be learning and embracing one’s challenges in life, never be afraid to give your dreams and aspirations a go. My support network has grown as I have become more willing to ask questions and remove myself from the process. Together we will make constructive steps to achieving your goals!
My experience and expertise as a scientist, executive, and mentor will save you time, provide you with the practical tools you need to be a succesful entrepreneur.
Experienced commercial transactions lawyer with a demonstrated history of working in various industries ranging from chemicals manufacturing, media, fashion, telecommunications, software licensing, real estate transactions, and recruitment.
Focus Areas: Corporate Advisory, Risk management/assessment, Intellectual property law, cyber laws, data protection regime. joint development agreements, internal compliance, policy drafting, complex transaction negotiation and management, and procurement agreements.
If you are interested in any of my focus areas, I can assist you in planning your future career paths as a legal professional or a professional who focuses on these specific areas of interest. Multitasking and finding the right balance are my core competencies. My aim of mentorship is to ensure that the choices you make are based on your interests and strengths.
I love helping people, I look forward to assisting you to achieve your dreams!
An accomplished ICT Project & Program management professional with over a decade of successful delivery and management both in Traditional and Agile environments.
Looking to share my experience and bring the best out of ethical and ambitious folks to be a success in the ICT project and program management space.
Sean is an entrepreneur, business strategist and operations expert. He has gained extensive experience through his own start-up, Yumchaa Teas, a highly regarded and now publicly listed, multi-channel tea company. During that time, Sean developed specialist skills in sales and training, growth and operational strategy, and creating high-performance teams. More importantly, Sean is an active listener and will provide a sounding board for founders when they need it.
I have extensive experience from establishing and overseeing successful business for almost 30 years. I have had the falls and certainly the success, I am not going to give you an embellished version of simply telling you what you want to here rather guidance and advice that you need to know.
I have made mistakes however I’ve backed myself and in that learned much about what it takes to build it and more importantly retain it, My travels in the imbalance that burnout can cause and the road to recovery are one of the greatest and most difficult pieces of advice one can impart.