Tell us a little about yourself?
I am Sally Costin. Happily married, mother of four adult children. Started my career in PR and sales but moved into IT management. Now have 25years in the IT and Telecommunications and currently working at nbn Program, Managing large fibre roll outs for Enterprise business customers.
Who are the women who have inspired you the most in your life?
My mum – who financially supported the family – her never say die attitude, thriftiness and optimism have been a huge influence on me. My daughters who keep me current and provide a mirror which I sometimes find shocking an often funny. My sister (who was 6 years older than me- she is no longer alive) who had my undying devotion and I watched everything! All women I have met in business – I have learnt something from all of them. My current boss Daisey Stampfer is so kind and loyal – she is successful at being herself in all situations.
Why do you think it’s important to increase the number of women in business, particularly in leadership roles?
Women bring a different perspective to business particularly regarding teams, collaboration and looking after one another. They can be great at picking up the practicalities to make sure an initiative can be successful but they also see the big picture.
What more can be done to support women in male-dominated industries?
I have been very lucky in this respect. Something key comes to mind – I think that when conversation turns to sexist comments, people (women and men) need to speak up- it is so often laughed at out of embarrassment which can be taken as agreement. I am still shocked and don’t always stand up for myself – we need to support each other to do that and show we will do if for men as well. Sometimes women don’t stand up for other women because they are busy surviving.
What further steps can be implemented to encourage women supporting women?
Women should be mentoring other women. There should be more opportunities to talk and engage with women outside your organisation who may not worry about you being their competition. Expanding your network and supporting women at large.
How would you motivate women to “lean in”?
Just as it is getting to its worst – you need to lean in. Stepping in when others step out is so satisfying. Don’t be afraid to be a little different – it’s not that hard to be above average. Spend a little more time on research, ask more questions, be genuinely interested and curious to solve problems.
Someone needs to lead -May as well be you!
How would you describe your current thinking about diversity and inclusion?
I’m seeing more of it which is great because it brings some really good ideas and different thinking. I’m still trying to work out if we are overdoing it- there are so many things to celebrate!
The worst thing we can do for really capable people is include them due to diversity – I am really desperate to see everyone included based on their capability.
Would you like to tell us a bit more about your thoughts/ comments?
I come from a family where Mum worked full time but she still gave the quo dos to my Dad (who was a nice bloke but had too many business ideas!). She was not supported by my Dad – she still did all the cooking, gardening and parenting. Now a working Mum is recognised more and can ask for more so I appreciate that.
Pay inequality really annoys me but I do think that women need to be more sure of what they want and ask for it – don’t be a victim – stand up and understand your value.