Rosemary Vilgan is an inspiring and experienced leader. She is one of Australia’s top CEO’s, a multiple award winner, including Telstra Australian Business Woman of the Year.
Rosemary has had a long and distinguished business career. At the age of 33, she was appointed CEO of QSuper, one of the largest superannuation funds in Australia.? Rosemary is recognised both nationally and internationally for her leadership of transforming QSuper to an innovative, vertically integrated $90 billion financial services organisation.
Highly regarded in the superannuation, financial services and business communities, Rosemary regularly works with government, industry and business.?Currently Rosemary is a Director at Commonwealth Bank Group Super and Queensland Divisional Councilor for the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
Key achievements at QSuper:
Personally negotiated and led major superannuation improvements for over 80,000 clients.
Transformed a public sector superannuation organisation into a globally recognised financial institution, which now covers superannuation, investment, financial planning and life insurance.
Led many mergers and therefore knows the issues with blending cultures. Many of these were very difficult and she had to overcome many stakeholder interests.
Created a World-class culture and received World-class staff engagement scores. Rosemary was able to bring the employees along for the journey and growth of QSuper. Many staff even had to resign from public service during the GFC to work alongside her in the new private entity she created.
Oversaw global investments as a result gaining great insight into why QSuper would invest around world – e.g. Times Square New York, Heathrow airport.
Led national superannuation body from age 33 as Chairman and had a major influence on retirement policy. She was made a life member in 2009.
Key achievement at ASFA (Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia):
Council (i.e. Board) member for 12 years of QUT in a time of great progress. QUT is very highly regarded.
Was Deputy Chancellor for 2 years (i.e. Deputy Chairman of Board) and Chairman of Audit and Risk Committee for nearly 10 years.
Chaired reviews into the Education and Business faculties.
Given Honorary doctorate from the University – so technically “Dr Vilgan”
Key achievements in the University Sector:
Go for nirvana i.e. in Strategy. You need to know where you are going. Always focus on the biggest of dreams of what you are about. This is what led Rosemary to building such a big, global business.
Lead your people and organisation from a place of love. You are being asked to love and care for the organisation that pays you. Your people need to understand the organisation mission and strategy. Don’t let fear of the impact (especially on you) get in the way.
Make it real and become great at communicating the stories. Why are we doing this? Be prepared to be vulnerable if you can.
Lead up. Your team below you is very important but many people forget who hires you are actually the people above. Are you helping them achieve?
Things go wrong. Risk is always there whether you recognise it or not. You need to trust your staff or why have them? You also need to ask lots of questions as ultimately the buck stops with you.
Rosemary’s tips on what makes a great leader: