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Mental Health & High Performance in Turnaround

The Sydney NextGen Committee held its latest event at KPMG last month, focusing on the topic of mental health. The esteemed panel moderated by Angela Priestley (Editorial Director, ‘Women’s Agenda’) consisted of:

  • Lucy Brogden, National Mental Health Commissioner;
  • Yvonne Willich, in-house Psychologist at Kordamentha;
  • Paul Howes, Partner at KPMG (and former head of the AWU); and
  • Jono Nicholas, CEO of Reach Out

The panel spoke candidly and knowledgeably about mental health both from their own personal perspectives but also in the context of the turnaround industry generally.

Key takeouts from the session as summarised by NextGen Chair Nick Edwards (Johnson Winter & Slattery):

  • Everyone will be impacted by some form of mental health issue – either personally, by caring for a loved one or showing concern for a co-worker or employee;
  • Mental health is like any other health concern, and should be treated early and often;
  • Reaching out for help is not a sign of weakness;
  • Speaking out, especially those in leadership positions, destigmatises something that most Australians will suffer from at some point in their life;
  • Asking for help or taking time out will not impact an individual’s ability to ultimately have a successful or indeed long career;
  • Individuals who succeed at constantly high levels are more likely to reassess their own mental health and happiness ‘index’ regularly.


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