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2018 Executive of the Year Awards: Past winners share their tips for applying

Applications for The CEO Magazine’s Executive of the Year Awards open 2 April 2018. Here’s a round-up of advice from some of last year’s winners that’s worth considering before you get started on your application.

Now in its seventh year, The CEO Magazine’s Executive of the Year Awards has firmly cemented its place on the corporate calendar as a way to celebrate Australia’s top leaders.

The 2018 awards ceremony will be held on Wednesday 21 November at ICC Sydney and applications open soon – 2 April 2018.

We asked six of the winners from 2017 what their advice would be for anyone thinking of applying:

  1. “Before I entered I asked one of the judges of the 2017 awards if they had any tips for entering and they just said, ‘Be yourself’. So, with that in mind, don’t get someone else to write the application – write it yourself, make it personal and make it true to your values. I think if someone else writes it for you, you can you lose a bit of that personal touch. Be real and honest and true. Everyone has a chance.”– Andrea Ingham, Spotify, Joint-winner of Sales Executive of the Year
  2. “Just applying in itself is a good opportunity to have a look at what you’ve achieved. Even if you don’t get through as a finalist, I think it’s a great experience. Go for it because you never know, I’m very surprised about winning so it’s worth just going for it.” – Sara Kahlau, icare, Winner of Young Executive of the Year
  3. Just applying in itself is a good opportunity to have a look at what you’ve achieved.

  4. “Definitely apply. It’s such an amazing event for everybody in every industry. I truly believe that getting to be a finalist is amazing. I’ve been a finalist for three years so to now win is just a delight.” – Simone Koolloos, Blackmores, Winner of Executive Assistant of the Year
  5. “Certainly make sure you go into it with the right passion. It’s about your team and what you do together so make sure that you communicate that as part of the process.” –
    Scott Stavretis, Acquire BPO, Winner of Professional Services Executive of the Year
  6. “Bring out your best and make sure your timing is right. For me, one of the big success factors was making sure people had a seat at the executive table – that’s really one of the main reasons why I’m here today at the 2017 Executive of the Year Awards.” – Stephen Capello, BankVic, Winner of Financial Services Executive of the Year
  7. “Be honest. Definitely touch on the things you have failed in – how you’ve learned from that and improved on it.” – Dr Aniss GE Chami, Vitex Pharmaceuticals, Winner of Manufacturing Executive of the Year
  8. “For me, it’s about showing women that you can follow your dreams. I believe women in business should be encouraged to celebrate their success especially in events such as the Executive of the Year Awards. I think it’s a really fantastic stepping stone in a male-dominated environment to be able to share their success and tell their story.” – Shelley Sullivan, ModelCo, Winner of Retail Executive of the Year and sole female finalist in the major category, CEO of the Year.

For more information on the 2018 Executive of the Year Awards, including the full list of categories and how to apply, go to

Purchase tickets to the 2018 Executive of the Year Awards.

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