Males continue to dominate leadership positions in Australia, with Australian Bureau of Statistics figures revealing that only 17% of CEOs in Australia were women in 2013/14.
Lavars has over 20 years’ experience in financial services, including: sales, strategic planning, business management, product development, IT and project delivery, risk management, operations and service delivery.
Nurturing the right culture starts with the appointment of the right people in the right roles.
Nurturing the right culture starts with the appointment of the right people in the right roles, she says.
“The financial sector is becoming increasingly aware of the value of diversity, with a strong focus on supporting women to reach more senior roles, Lavars says.
“There’s more opportunity now for women to seek senior roles than I’ve ever known, and it’s great to see the evolution of flexible working arrangements.”
One of the greatest pressures of her role is having to be a lot of things to a lot of different people, she says.
“There are often a lot of competing demands. Your stakeholder groups span the Board of Directors, shareholders, clients, staff, your leadership team and other professional bodies. You need to prioritise and integrate a lot of demands on an ongoing basis.
“I’ve learned to minimise stress levels around things outside my control. You need to accept that you’ll be faced with unexpected challenges and you need to just face the issue and work to solve it. If you step up to a problem, you can get past it.”
“It’s also essential that you provide clarity across your team and set goals. Ensure there’s a clear understanding of what you stand for as a business, what you’re working to achieve, and stay accountable to results. I’m also a believer of building a culture that instils pride and positive energy.”
Rachael's story is a good example of how following a career path that you love and working hard can result in a natural career progression toward the top positions in your organisation.
Macquarie Pacific Funding is a 50/50 joint venture between Macquarie Bank and Steadfast Group.