SustainHealth: Networking with the IACC & The Australian College of Nursing

SustainHealth: Networking with the IACC & The Australian College of Nursing

Last week the SustainHealth team had the pleasure of attending a healthcare networking event, hosted by the Irish Australian Chamber of Commerce.  The evening was truly inspiring, as we were witness to an intimate audience with the CEO of the Australian College of Nursing, Kylie Ward. 

One thing that became apparent throughout the evening, was that healthcare professionals do not often get the opportunity to attend professional peer to peer networking initiatives. Sometimes because they are working shifts and lead busy lives in general, but also because they don’t necessarily consider themselves to be part of the business community.

Sinead Keane, Perioperative ANUM at St Vincent’s Private Hospital in Sydney, heads up the IACC’s Health Network for just this reason. Sinead believes that healthcare professionals deserve the opportunity to build their network and develop their professional presence and business acumen, and Sinead should know. She recently challenged the notion that nurses are not business professional with great success and went on to win the IACC’s 2017 Young Business professional award!

Sinead’s eloquent interview with Kylie Ward was fascinating. Covering, transformational leadership, female leadership in health, global healthcare and the future influence of technology in the nursing profession. It’s safe to say that our team all gained useful insight into the community we support on a daily basis.

As the CEO of the ACN, Kylie Ward passionately believes in people and is an inspirational advocate for her nursing colleagues. She encourages all nurses to know their worth as individuals and as professionals. Her insights into the nursing profession were second to none, as she opened up the conversion around leadership, suggesting that regardless of their ‘professional level,” all nurses are indeed leaders and should own this with pride.

Kylie also sparked a thought provoking discussion around how nurses perceive themselves as a profession and peer group as almost “less than” others in the healthcare industry. This, Kylie says is evident in the language nurses use to discuss and depict their career, themselves and peers, often with negative connotation. Kylie encourages all nursing professionals, not only to back themselves but to define their vocation in positive, articulate and professional manner.

Both myself and my SustainHealth colleagues left this event feeling empowered as professionals, as individuals and as a team. As we discussed our key take away’s on the journey home we found some  common themes really resonated strongly with us, namely:

  1. Find a mentor to support you throughout your career. Find someone who inspires you, ask questions, learn and share your ideas.
  2. Strength in a team is not about one but about all. The best work comes through collaboration and utilising the strength of each member of your team.
  3. Leaders do not require a title, as a healthcare professional, you are a leader each time you enter a room to treat your patients and support their families. So get out of your own way and embrace and nurture your talent.
  4. Get comfortable being uncomfortable, be purpose driven, this is when the magic happens and we evolve as professionals and people.
  5. Finally, adjust your stance! Be mindful of standing on two feet, hold your head high, open your shoulders and stand tall. This body language is common in the boardroom but maybe not so common on the ward. These simple changes are not only empowering but powerful! Try it today, you wont regret it.

As a business, SustainHealth will continue to support the IACC’s  Health Network event and we encouraging all our clients and candidates to attend. It’s not just an awesome opportunity to meet peers in your professional community but a great place to learn and  perhaps meet a mentor.

You can find out more about the next Health Network event here or contact one of our dedicated team to find out more, email or call us on: 0282744677.