If you Google ‘career goals’ you’ll most likely find an image of the charming and driven Michelle Battersby staring back at you. From launching Bumble in Australia, New Zealand and The Philippines, to currently heading up marketing for beloved fitness brand Keep It Cleaner, when it comes to female empowerment and owning it like a boss, Michelle tops our list.
To get the inside scoop on how this inspiring, coffee-craving business trailblazer gets it done, we teamed up with Nescafé Gold to dive deep on Michelle’s story, advice and daily rituals. We’re talking everything from her pivotal career moments to kick-starting the day with a much-needed coffee and workout.
Michelle will also be taking over our ‘Gram in the coming weeks to share how to Make It Gold on the daily. Expect insider career tips and how she discovers pockets of happiness every day. But that's not all—we're also teaming up with a slew of other inspirational Aussies in the coming weeks to dive deep on how they find joy and Make It Gold on the reg—hit follow and watch this space for more feel-good moments coming your way.
Let’s start at the beginning—what was your dream job when you were younger?
During childhood, all I wanted to be was an Olympian. I was obsessed with sport, however, once I was old enough to realise how hard that was actually going to be I swapped to a News Reporter.
Can you tell us about your career so far?
My career started working in the Finance Industry. I was an HR Generalist and worked in investment banks for around four years. I enjoyed the challenge but didn't feel passionate about the role. Something was missing for me.
I ended up telling someone that I was unhappy in my career and this led to an introduction to Whitney Wolfe-Herd—the CEO and Founder of Bumble. I had a call with Whitney, I believed in her and Bumble’s mission and I went on to launch Bumble into Australia, New Zealand, The Philippines and other countries within the APAC region. I absolutely loved my time at Bumble, it transformed not only my career but also who I am today.
I learned that I really loved the launch period of a brand and that was the catalyst for my next move with Keep It Cleaner. I love doing things really quickly and seeing immediate results. I am driven by challenges and the reward of doing things for the first time.
KEEPING ON TOP OF YOUR WORKLOAD WHILE KICKING GOALS CAN OFTEN BE A HARD FEAT, HOW DO YOU GET IT ALL DONE—ANY SECRETS YOU CAN LET US IN ON?
You have to be organised to get through everything—for me, that is really important. I am a list writer and I take great pride in ticking off my to-do list. My advice for anyone who wants to get organised is to stock up on a quality planner, I am a big fan of a MiGOALS. I use their stationery to map out what I have to do and prioritise my day. I sit down with my Nescafé Gold in the morning and map out the tasks I need to complete in order of priority. Then I work my through them from top to bottom. Seriously satisfying stuff.
What are your thoughts on work/life balance and what does this look like for you?
Work/life balance is so personal and something that is dependent on the many different “channels” of your life. I think if you are ambitious it is really hard to draw the line, but switching off in some way, is so important and in the end it actually makes you more productive. I find that exercise is critical for me. It means that I can step away from the computer or the phone and have some time for me.
TELL US ABOUT ONE OF YOUR BIGGEST ‘PINCH ME’ CAREER MOMENTS SO FAR?
There have been so many amazing moments. Whilst I was at Bumble, I knew that that role was going to be one of the most unique, rewarding experiences I would probably ever have in my life. When I landed in the Philippines for the first time I started crying. The thought of launching the brand again in a totally foreign place was so overwhelming. Thinking back, I count myself as incredibly lucky to launch such an incredible brand in multiple markets.
WHEN IT COMES TO FINDING FULFILMENT AT WORK, WHAT’S ONE PIECE OF ADVICE YOU CAN GIVE OUR CAREER CHASERS?
For me, I find it so much easier to push myself when I truly believe in something. Working for brands with purpose makes believing in the brand a whole lot easier. To be a part of something that positively impacts people is always going to leave you feeling fulfilled.
So, what does a typical day look like for you?
I always take my dog Leia for a walk each morning to get outside, then I tend to plan out my day. If it’s a Monday, I will have attempted to plan out the week ahead on Sunday evening so I am across my 'must do’s' for the week. There are always meetings and catching up with the team, working from home during COVID has meant a lot of time on Zoom or chatting more casually throughout the day via Slack.
Managing a team, your day always tends to become pulled in different directions so I try to have at least an hour at some point where I am “offline” so that I am working through my own inbox.
what’s one thing you do without fail every day that brings you joy?
Starting the day right is critical. For me, that means a cup of Nescafé Gold to arm me for what’s ahead. Sitting down with a coffee is my daily ritual and one that I really enjoy. It is like my own personal barista, it's smooth and there is nothing better on a cold winters day in Melbourne. It allows me to sit and take a moment before things get too busy. After that, I then move onto some exercise with a KIC workout. I feel like only after that, I can then tackle the day.
After a long day at work, how do you unwind?
I love to cook—it is a passion of mine. Working with KIC has really brought out the inner chef in me and I get such satisfaction from creating something from scratch. From vodka pasta to butter chicken and the KIC macaroni cheese recipe, I love unwinding in the kitchen.
What’s the best piece of life advice you have ever received?
Don’t put too much pressure on yourself to be everything. Remember to be kind to yourself along the way and surround yourself with people who inspire you.
You’ve achieved a lot of success already with your inspiring career, what’s your advice for anyone looking to follow a similar path as you?
Don’t be afraid of change, back yourself and take the leap. Remember: change brings about growth, so go for it.
And finally, when it comes to living your best life, how do you ensure you make every day a Gold one?
It’s so important to celebrate the little wins. Working in a startup environment, you become used to setting aggressive growth goals and waiting for big numbers. It can begin to move so rapidly you forget where it came from and how certain moments at the start would have meant everything to you but now they seem somewhat insignificant. I think it’s really important to remember that and to keep celebrating the small successes.
Looking for more inspiration? Head to our ‘Gram where we’ll be teaming up with Michelle to share ideas on how you can make every day a gold one and spoiler, it definitely involves a much-needed cup of Nescafé Gold.
Image credit: Michelle Battersby