As an HR Executive at Queensland Rugby League Jane Shand is excited to be involved in introducing a suite of best-practice family-friendly polices for employees.
These include providing all parents with 18 weeks paid parental leave, contributing full superannuation payments on the unpaid balance of parental leave for the first 12 months and offering up to 12 months ‘Grandparental Leave’ to assist parents with returning to the workforce.
The new policy also provides for up to 10 days paid Domestic and Family Violence Leave.
Shand, a finalist in the 2019 Women’s Agenda Leadership Awards, has over a decade working in senior human resources positions and was awarded Australian HR Manager of the Year 2017.
She tells us more about her role and career.
Has your career in this field been planned or has it happened by chance? What put you on this path today?
I’ve had several careers, the current one in HR certainly wasn’t planned. I was working in Operations and I kept finding all these things I felt we could do better. Human Resources seemed to be in charge of effecting change so when the HR Manager role came up I applied and I got it despite having no experience in this area. I had a CEO who took a risk on me and then supported me to make the changes we needed – he has remained one of my top supporters and closest mentors.
What are you working on right now that’s got you really excited?
We’re currently launching some fantastic new policies. I feel extremely lucky to be part of such a progressive Senior Leadership Team – they understand that, as a community organisation, we have an obligation to be part of the solution.
What’s a key issue facing women in your profession or line of work right now?
At QRL 50% of our employees are female which is a great start but when you dive into the numbers further we see that only 7% are in senior roles. This trend is echoed in our volunteer communities across Queensland where female Club Presidents and Chairs are heavily under-represented. This is a key issue that we are starting to focus on at the organisation level with our teams and also across the State as the Governing Body.
The best tip you’ve been given in your career?
Always be gracious with people and treat them with dignity.
How have mentors, sponsors or some other kind of support system aided your career, if at all?
I was lucky enough to have a wise CEO who made me believe in myself when I first pursued an HR career and a husband who cooks for me every night. Over the past ten years I have also invested in a number of Executive Coaches who ask the hard questions and ensure I hold myself accountable.
As well as your career, what other priorities do you juggle?
Nothing out of the ordinary.
How do you manage your wellbeing and stay at the top of your game?
I walk to give me time to think, I travel to think about things differently, and I practice Yoga to stop myself from thinking too much.
Where do you currently get news and info regarding your industry and career?
Harvard Business Review, HRD Magazine, various conferences and summits on the topics of Leadership, HR, Culture, Performance. LinkedIn can also have some interesting and thought-provoking discussions and I have a few key people I regularly catch up with for coffee or wine to keep my finger on the pulse.
Got a business or career book or podcast you’d recommend?
I’ve read all of Malcolm Gladwell’s books and listened to all of his podcasts – love that guy! There’s also a TED talk by Margaret Heffernan that I’ve shared with a few groups about ‘Super Chickens’ and how they correlate (or don’t correlate) to successful team work. Google it – it has a great message!
Our finalists are sharing some awesome career wisdom in these Q&As, as well as more on their back story and how they have emerged as a leader. See our growing hub for these Q&As here.