Leaders of the Pack

Posted by Rebecca Christian on 05 February 2018

Over the last 21 years, Corporate Australia, and in particular, the industry super and financial services sectors, have thrown their considerable weight behind the Mother’s Day Classic.

Many organisations have sponsored the event, entered corporate teams and helped make the event the enormous success it is today.

And in most cases, their leaders have done what good leaders do, they’ve set the tone and shown the rest of their organisation how it’s done.

Today the Mother’s Day Classic’s Corporate Challenge pits executives from diverse industries against each other as they battle it out to take the crown as the number one corporate fundraiser.

Last year Suzanne Holden, CEO of Link Group, took the title in a contest that went down to the wire raising less than a thousand dollars more than Julie Lander CEO of CareSuper. Holden raised a staggering $21,396.90 while Lander managed an equally impressive $20,421.79.

This year Lander is keen to turn the tables.

“I enjoy the competitive side of the corporate challenge somewhat, but not as much as our marketing team do, they really embrace it. They check the leaderboard frequently, but in the end, it’s not really about winning, but raising as much money as possible,” she said.

“Internally it brings staff together as well, all working for a common cause. And that has been a very positive outcome for the organisation.”

For Lander the positives are obvious, the Mother’s Day Classic raises money for a cause that touches almost everybody in some way, it connects the CareSuper staff with something bigger than themselves and their daily work, and it presents many team building opportunities.

“Internally we have pink morning teas, we also hold social events where employees make a  donation to join in – so it becomes a bit of a community thing for the team,” she said.

Lander believes it is the collective might that drives the Mother’s Day Classic that helps make such a difference.

“We are not just a pimple on a pumpkin – it’s a collective of likeminded people and organisations, all putting forward a concerted effort to raise money for research. A lot of the success of the Mother’s Day Classic has come from the industry fund family. To take it to the next level to raise money through the corporate challenge is adding more value to the whole MDC and making more of an impact,” she said.

Lander is again excited to be on board for this year’s corporate challenge and encourages other executives to lead from the front, as long as they trail her in the final tally.

“I’d encourage other executives to get involved and join the corporate challenge, as long as they don’t beat me, it’s great for the funds and really any other organisation to get involved,” she said.