What Sandcastles Taught Me About Career Strategy

January 01, 2018
When I was little I went to Fiji every year on hols. Not so exotic for Aussies, just a two hour hop across the Pacific.

Each year, there would be a sandcastle building competition on the beach. The first year, I watched with interest as all the anklebiters built their exquisite turrets and moats. Parents got involved, cue constructions to rival the Loire Valley. The winner though, built the local village house: the bure. 

Genius! It was essentially a mound of sand with a palm frond stuck through the top. 5 mins work and Boom! The Bure Builder got the Booty.

Picture the following year, we are back on the beach, the sandcastle comp. kicks off and what do I build? A BURE of course. Did I win? What do you think?  I knew what worked, I’d watched the best in class, and I knew that I did not need to innovate.

Comeback Girl


Not even Elon Musk re-invented the wheel for his Tesla. Same with your career relaunch. The resources out there are unbelievable. Spend time looking at the experts who have been at it for 30 years and adapting their wisdom to your own offering. 


Learn from the success of others. 


Let’s not overthink job application mechanics. We are all so very busy. If you are thinking about a career launch or job change,  here are my top (almost completely) free best resources of 2017 to help you.

For your Linkedin profile: look no further than other people in your industry’s profiles. I tell my candidates to do this all the time…who do you want to emulate? Use their profile as a template and then add your “hue”. Look also  at this free guide to sharpen your profile. This helps you think about your Linkedin summary

For your CV if you know a recruiter, ask them to send you some templates. Alternatively you can pay £7 (2 commute cappuccinos!)  and go here

For your elevator pitch read this (write it, rehearse it, film yourself, ensure it feels congruent to you)

For interview preparation you should read this and also look here

For your network by all means add shiny sparkly new people to it and regularly. The real gold is your work alumni though, who can’t see you right now in your tracky bums but just remember you ruling and reigning in a meeting. So says the founder of iRelaunch in her TED talk

Once you are ready to connect with employers you can't reach yourself, contact this amazing company placing women after breaks. Here's to your first beach holiday earned with your new salary.

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