Q&A with Danielle Barnes


Q&A with Danielle Barnes Danielle Barnes General Manager, Springwood Sports Club How did you find your start in the industry and how did you arrive at your current position?  When I started in hospitality, I was not looking for a career. I had experience working in cafes and restaurants, and I loved being around people. I was looking for a role I enjoyed, that also allowed me enough flexibility to study at Uni. My start in Clubs was not actually inside the Club at all – as part of the promotions team, I was out on the road, at beaches and holiday parks, talking to locals and connecting with businesses. Over the next ten years, I dipped my feet into almost every department within the organisation – Catering, Beverage, Member Services, Gaming, Fitness & Aquatics, Operations and Marketing. In March this year, after a decade with Mingara Recreation Club, I accepted the role of General Manager at one of our sister clubs; Springwood Sports Club. What excites you most about working in the Gaming and Hospitality Industry? The gaming and hospitality industry is fast-paced and ever-changing. I love the role we play in our customers’ lives, and the [...]

Q&A with Danielle Barnes2021-06-21T08:52:59+10:00

Q&A with Mandy Chen


Q&A with Mandy Chen  Name: Mandy Chen Current Position: Gaming Operations Supervisor How did you find your start in the industry and how did you arrive at your current position?  I first joined Treasury Brisbane in 2012 as a food and beverage attendant in Luke Nyguen’s Fat Noodle restaurant. I made the decision to transition to a career in gaming to build on the experience I gained in the restaurant and service industry. I had the opportunity to work as a Croupier at Treasury in 2013 and was promoted to a Higher Duties Dealer Dealer/Floor Manager just four years later, having developed strong technical skills and excellent guest service. Following that, I was promoted to my current position as a Gaming Operations Supervisor in 2019. There are no short cuts to developing a career in gaming and operations. It’s paramount to take opportunities when they arise and believe in yourself and your skills in order to achieve everything you set out to do. What do you consider to be the biggest achievement of your career, so far?  Since having joined the Gaming team at Treasury Brisbane, I have competed in the Croupier of the Year competition in 2017, 2018 and 2019. In [...]

Q&A with Mandy Chen2021-05-03T07:25:32+10:00

Q&A with Kim Anderson


Q&A with Kim Anderson   How did you find your start in the industry and how did you arrive at your current position? In 1993 I was completing my final year of a Diploma in Primary Teaching. At the time, teaching roles were competitive, and I was about to be married. With a mortgage and an upcoming wedding, full-time employment was important. Crown Melbourne was opening a temporary Casino and had advertised for Croupiers in the Herald Sun. My father who was always fascinated by mathematics had seen an advertisement in the Herald Sun and suggested I apply. After a rigorous recruitment process, I was hired as a Craps Dealer. Becoming a part of the gaming industry I was fortunate enough to progress to a Higher Duties Dealer and obtain additional game training. In 1997, when Crown Melbourne commenced operations at the current Southbank site, I was promoted to Game Supervisor. From 1998 my journey of motherhood began. My children born in 1998 and 2001, respectively. My return to the business was in a part-time capacity. My passion for the industry and drive to progress in my career remained, despite limited opportunity and care giving responsibilities. In 2012 Crown [...]

Q&A with Kim Anderson2021-04-03T16:31:16+11:00

Q&A with Julie Irwin


How did you find your start in the industry and how did you arrive at your current position?   I originally started my career in Sydney in publishing at SRA then McGraw-Hill Book Company where I designed brochures and catalogues. From there I moved into a Finance support role then a Marketing role within Polaroid Australia. I had also completed study in the area of IT and was able to help support Polaroids team move into Microsoft Office products at the time. My husband was part of a teaching scholarship which took him to the Newcastle Region. It was there I began with Aristocrat and the Gaming Industry. With Newcastle being a regional office, I was fortunate enough to have exposure to all areas of the business including sales order management, inventory, installs and logistics which gave me a cross functional view of the company and the gaming industry. With that exposure and my ability to pick up on IT software application processes quickly I was seconded to train the sales team with the Configuration tool and CRM and from their enlisted to work on a Project to incorporate the Australian National Sales Support Function into one team which resulted [...]

Q&A with Julie Irwin2021-02-27T16:05:29+11:00

Q&A with Emily Haydon


How did you find your start in the industry and how did you arrive at your current position?   After graduating university I started my career in IT in the dairy industry. One of my first roles was as a project co-ordinator doing administration – budgets, minutes, supporting project and programme managers in anything they needed. I really enjoyed working in a project environment, fast paced and focused on delivering specific outcomes. I used that time to learn as much as I could, I spent a lot of time listening, asking questions and observing different management and leadership styles and after a few years I moved into a project management role, managing a range of small-medium IT projects. I then got the opportunity to work on a large transformation programme, replacing the system we used for core business processes (HR, procurement, finance, supply chain and sales) across multiple countries in Asia. This was a steep learning curve for me, I had my first experience being part of a high performing team and in 18 months we had rolled out the system to five countries. Following that I decided to take some time off, and spent six months travelling overseas.  When [...]

Q&A with Emily Haydon2021-04-12T15:25:25+10:00

Reflections from the Executive Development Program


“At first I was afraid, I was petrified” Gloria Gaynor, I Will Survive Amy Ayoub, The Zen Speaker, told me that the best way to start a speech is with a quote, a fact or a question. I think I can apply the same principle to this article and I can think of no better quote that sums up how I felt on the first day of the Executive Development Program. I don’t remember when I first heard about the Executive Development Program. I do remember that I was a Customer Service team member, working at the Premium Gaming Room reception desk at Treasury Casino in Brisbane, so it must have been about ten years ago. I had heard that one of the Casino Duty Managers had gone to Lake Tahoe in Nevada USA for a development course that was specifically for leaders in the gaming industry. I set myself the goal that one day I would attend. As I write this, I’m reflecting on one of the most challenging, exhausting, difficult and rewarding experiences of my career and my education. A joint initiative of the University of Reno and the University of Las Vegas, The Executive Development Program [...]

Reflections from the Executive Development Program2019-12-05T11:20:09+11:00

Q&A with Kimberley Malcolm


How did you find your start in the industry and how did you arrive at your current position?   I started working at Zagame’s Caulfield at the age of 18. I had no idea how to pour a beer and I certainly wasn’t ready for the grave yard shift as my induction to hospitality and gaming. At the time Zagame’s Caulfield was the number one performing venue in Victoria and I relished the vibe of the organisation, the comradery of the team, the vision of the leadership, and the thrill of working the public bar and taking note of the horses that impressed at trackwork that morning at Caulfield Racecourse. I was hooked! Since then I’ve worked at what is now The Glasshouse, Caulfield and then on to Tabcorp in a training role followed by a private RTO in a Hospitality Executive position. I have been at the Australian Hotels Association (Vic) for 6 years, firstly as the Manager for Membership and now as the Senior Manager for Membership and Industry Engagement. What has motivated you to get involved in being an advocate for change? (for gender equality) Having now been in the industry for (ahem) 23 years, I see [...]

Q&A with Kimberley Malcolm2019-11-09T09:35:26+11:00

Q&A with Claudia Rae


How did you find your start in the industry and how did you arrive at your current position? I worked as a waitress in Wests Leagues Club whilst studying mathematics at university. After graduating, I landed a graduate position at Aristocrat and have worked my way up to my current role as Game Design Lead. So, I have experience working for a club and a gaming manufacturer in completely unrelated roles. Why is Women in Gaming & Hospitality so important to you? Women in Gaming & Hospitality is so important to me as it has provided a range of opportunities for me to develop professionally. I have attended Step Forward Events, Networking nights and most recently, I was fortunate enough to be selected for the Emerging Speakers Program. I always leave these events feeling inspired and energised. As part of the Emerging Speakers Program, I attended the Gaming, Racing & Wagering Australia conference along with the 3 others selected for the program (Ainslie, Kimberley and Janelle) and we were coached by Josephine Dalton (General Manager - People Services, People & performance at The Star Entertainment Group). This was a wonderful opportunity to meet other women in various parts of [...]

Q&A with Claudia Rae2019-10-24T08:15:28+11:00

Q&A with Lindsay van Andel


How did you find your start in the industry and how did you arrive at your current position? Initially I was drawn to the hospitality industry specifically towards hotels. I was studying accounting and had hoped to get a finance job in a hotel chain that could open up the possibilities to work abroad. To get experience in the industry I applied for a Gaming Attendant role at Parramatta Leagues Club, which I was successful in. To this day I still have fond memories of comradery amongst the staff from entry level to senior management. The more training I underwent the more avenues presented with the option to pursue a career within this industry. It was the moment I decided this would be my future that doors started to open for me. I underwent a quick succession from gaming attendant to loyalty host and then safe operator. I was presented with the opportunity to look at some small Gaming Admin tasks and quickly found a passion for Gaming. It was from here I looked to further my progression and find a role in my new found passion. I bid Parramatta Leagues Club farewell and stepped into a Gaming Analyst [...]

Q&A with Lindsay van Andel2019-08-15T16:26:17+10:00

Q&A with Nadine Grinblat


How do you find your start in the industry and how did you arrive at your current position? I started in the industry when I was in the penultimate year of an arts/law degree and I certainly started at entry level.  My first role in the gaming industry was a casual Gaming Machine Attendant/Cashier at Crown Melbourne.  I had been working a variety of hospitality and other roles whilst studying and I was impressed by both the great conditions on offer and the flexibility offered by the shift work.  I actually knew little to nothing about the industry itself (or about gambling) when I took that first role and never imagined at the time that I would still be working in an industry role over two decades later.  Upon completing my studies I took a role in management with the Crown Gaming Machines Department and in subsequent years I worked in responsible gambling, including as Manager of Crown’s Responsible Gambling Support Centre.  I moved to my first role with the Australasian Gaming Council – an industry funded NFP that focuses on industry sustainability and responsible gambling – in 2008.  I found the role at the AGC through networks established [...]

Q&A with Nadine Grinblat2019-07-03T15:51:31+10:00

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