There are rewarding careers in the field, even if a cassowary gets in your way.
I was destined to be a field technician.
My dad is a technician, my husband is a technician and my mum is a technician now, too.
Some of my happiest days growing up were when I would go out with dad on jobs, but when I told him I wanted to be a field tech, his first reaction was ‘don’t do it’. He was worried about how I would be treated.
When I started my traineeship, I was told I wouldn’t last six months. I graduated as the Queensland Trainee of the Year and started with Telstra as a field technician in Townsville. My dad could not have been more proud.
I’ve so far had many great experiences and made many great friends working in field service delivery. I’ve enjoyed chopper rides across this beautiful country, run away from snakes and lizards and been chased down a street by a cassowary. It’s been one hell of a ride and I have loved every part of it.
For any women thinking of a field-based career, my advice is: don’t be afraid; go for it. There’s a great support network available, rewarding career opportunities and, for someone like me in Far North Queensland, you get to work in some remote and beautiful locations.
You just need a positive attitude, a willingness to get your hands dirty and a sense of adventure.
In my current role as field manager for Cairns Country, I manage an area from Ingham to Cook Town. As a mother to three beautiful daughters, my biggest challenge is maintaining a healthy work-life balance, given I drive about 600km a week.
There’s also plenty of day-to-day challenges on the job but I have a great team working with me. They are self-sufficient, innovative and not afraid to dig in and work hard. And the work does get hard under the hot Queensland sun and when it is pouring rain during summer storms.But I love getting out each week to join them in the field and be part of the great work they do.
One of the most rewarding parts of the job is the way we change customer perceptions. Often when we arrive, they are not happy campers. We are the first Telstra people they see face-to-face and we often cop the brunt of their frustration. That’s part of the gig, but I love that when we do our job we leave them happy.