What gets you out of bed in the morning? We ask senior leaders…

Without a doubt there are days where the alarm goes off and it is hard to get out of bed. Particularly in the winter months where the sun takes that bit longer to rise, your doona keeps you warm and the idea of bracing the crisp winter air makes you seek comfort under the sheets.

But – having a role where you get to bring your best skills to your organisation certainly helps get the feet moving. And, if you have a role in public purpose where you can contribute to creating positive impact and change – certainly helps as well!

IPAA Queensland spoke with our Advisory Council about what it is about their role that helps them get out of bed in the morning, and as senior leaders in public purpose, their answers come as no surprise!

Rachel Hunter – Director-General, Department of State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning

This is a really exciting job! I have worked for over 35 years in Government. I had 8 years out of Government, but even during that time I consulted to Government and chaired several boards that oversighted government activities, so I am a Government individual.

I believe in the power of good government and I want to be a part of something that really matters. This job is such an exciting job. It has breadth and depth. I get to work with incredible people, inspirational people who are all motivated by the work they do. It is a very diverse portfolio and that is reflected by a diverse population of staff who are all motivated by the working in this organisation, and that is reflected in the department’s results in the Working For Queensland survey.

So it is exciting and it matters. The work that this portfolio does in terms of economic and industry development, setting planning frameworks that guide liveability as well as the economic aspirations of places of communities across Queensland, strategic planning that leads to key infrastructure, investment decisions, the focus on manufacturing, which for many people was increasingly becoming extinct in the national landscape yet what you see here in Queensland is a thriving manufacturing sector, strongly invested in advancement of manufacturing and the adoption of new technology. So our priority industry roadmaps, this is a really exciting place to work and it matters.

The economy matters. Our vision is for a thriving and inclusive Queensland where the economy, industry and community prospers.

Greg Hallam – Chief Executive Officer for the Local Government Association of Queensland (LGAQ)

The fact that it is different every day. We deal with every issue councils deal with, we run a very large business, the world we live in is extraordinary. The opportunities, the technology, the change, there is always something exciting to do!

The fact that we can do things that really matter and make a difference. We can be passionate about it, work collaboratively with our stakeholders, it is never a drudgery. You may tire of the travel, as it is just constant, but it is so important in what we do. The intellectual challenge though is great.

Ian Stewart – Former Queensland Police Commissioner

The people I work with, and the people I serve.

Neil Scales – Director-General, Department of Transport and Main Roads

 I would pay them to do this job! This job is making a difference to the people in Queensland and in turn the people in Australia.

James Purtill – Director-General, Department of Natural Resources, Mines and Energy

This portfolio is technically amazing. I bet everybody says this, but the people, the knowledge, the skill set, and while some people may stereotype that the public sector is a bit staid, and we can proudly attest that part of this department, the Lands Department, was the first Qld Government agency in 1858. So you can get labelled as being part of that dynasty, but some of the things coming out of this department, the 3D imagery, the satellite work, a whole bunch of environmental monitoring, scientific work, engineering work, policy development, I love the content.

Michelle Lees – Deputy Secretary, Service Delivery Operations, Department of Human Services

For me it is about working with a group of committed people who are adding real value to the community.


So – what is it about your job that helps you get out of bed in the morning? As public purpose workers, you play an important role in advancing the future of the community and the economy – that has to feel pretty great right!?

About IPAA Queensland:

IPAA Queensland is the professional association for people engaged in public purpose work.

Our mission is simple. We promote and enhance the professionalism, capability and integrity of public administration and pride in service.

We do this through a program of thought leadership forums and events that enable our members to build their connections, challenge their thinking and keep informed about contemporary issues.

Becoming a member of IPAA Queensland demonstrates your personal commitment and contribution to public purpose work and offers you exclusive development and networking opportunities. To read more articles like this, check out our blog, and to watch the Irene Longman Oration in full, join today and access the full back catalogue of IPAA Queensland events.