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Jackie Smith – Incubator Mentor – 2020

Jackie is an accomplished and results focussed leadership development professional coach and consultant with a depth of understanding of both people and business.  Jackie has the ability to bring a fresh perspective to individual and organisational barriers, and how to be flexible and adaptive to the ever changing context.  Jackie established her own training and coaching business in regional Australia in 2009 and has previously led a large national retail chain managing directly a team of 10 employees and indirectly over 60 franchisee business owners. An experienced people manager and coach who is able to identify barriers to success and bring out the best in others. Deep expertise in project management, transformational change.


Qualifications: Bachelor Degree in Economics from Monash University,  Masters in Leadership and Organisational Dynamics from RMIT, Certificate IV in Training and Assessment, DISC and Birkman Personality Test Accredited and a Certified Practitioner of Equine Assisted Learning.

Q & A  – Norfolk Incubator Programme

Where did you grow up?

I grew up in Melbourne with Scottish parents.

Given the choice between living in the city or country which would you choose and why?

I moved to the Northern Rivers NSW 12 years ago and haven’t missed city life a bit! Now I have a horse and a love of nature and whilst I travel to cities alot for my work I always feel blessed to come back to our region.

Describe your area of expertise?

I am a leadership development specialist and coach people to achieve their full potential  and to learn skills to support others to do the same. Leadership is a state of mind not a title – we can all be leaders, in our business, in our community and in our family.  It starts with getting clear about your purpose, vision and personal values.

What are you looking forward to most about participating in the Norfolk Island Incubator Programme?

I am so excited to be working with my mentees and supporting them to see the potential within themselves as well as the potential in the business.

What wisdom or knowledge do you hope to share with the participants?

What I have learnt and try to pass on to others is the value of staying open to opportunities by being open minded, curious and willing to learn.

What is the greatest hurdle you have had to overcome in your career and how did you do it?

At the end of 2018 I fell down a flight of stairs and broke my back and was unable to work for 6 months without insurance.   I was touched by the offers of help and the kindness people showed me in this time and was reminded that I am not alone and I can ask for help!   It has been nearly two years and I am noticing that I have got back my confidence.   The back healed in 3 months but the fear of falling stayed with me for some time.  WE are not always aware of the mental barriers that can hold us back.  The work I do helps to uncover these so that we can all move forward without limits.

If you could solve one problem or issue what would it be?

Inequality. The world has so much food and resources but the need for power and control  creates uneven distribution that keeps people hungry.  How would I solve it?  It starts with teaching empathy.

What advice would you give your younger self?

Don’t take health for granted. Strengthen your core! Helps to create a strong back. 

If you could have dinner with anyone, who would it be and why?

My parents – they are in lock down in Melbourne right now. Social connection is so vital to human wellbeing.

Best advice you have been given?

Listen more talk less.  “We have two ears and one mouth for a reason”.

What are you looking forward to most about participating in the Norfolk Island Incubator Programme?

To make a difference.  Cliché I know but in 2020 more than ever doing work with purpose is so very important.  I also love that I have the chance to support people to live, work and thrive in regional Australia.

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