Perth business coach excited to head Albany Chamber of Commerce and Industry

Headshot of Sarah Makse
Sarah MakseAlbany Advertiser
Albany Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s new chief executive Lisa Smith.
Camera IconAlbany Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s new chief executive Lisa Smith. Credit: Aaron Priest

Perth business coach Lisa Smith will move to Albany to take the reins at Albany Chamber of Commerce and Industry as the organisation’s new chief executive.

Ms Smith is the director and co-founder of Perth-based business consultancy Blow Your Own Mind which provides business coaching, workshops, entrepreneurial training and speciality learning experiences to businesses across WA.

Earlier this year, she was named one of Inside Small Business’ top 50 Australian small-business leaders for 2021.

Due to start in her role at the ACCI next month, Ms Smith has a passion for mentoring and experience in the resources, not-for-profit and university sectors.

“I am excited to be appointed and look forward to working with the team and executive committee on the transformative projects currently in development at the Albany Chamber,” she said.

“The Great Southern offers an abundance of opportunity for employment and investment.

“I am looking forward to advocating for the business community and helping it thrive thorough collaboration, connection and community initiatives.”

Ms Smith said Albany was one of the first places she visited after moving to Australia from the UK 16 years ago, and she knew it was the place she eventually wanted to call home.

“I’ve visited the Great Southern region and Albany many times for work and pleasure, and the role is perfect for my skills and experience up to this career point and I look forward to making a positive contribution to the community,” she said.

In her view, one of the biggest issues facing the local business community was skills shortages.

“Skills shortage is the obvious one for all industry sectors within the regions, with immediate urgency for the hospitality sector, while meeting the expectations of domestic tourism demand and accommodation for locals and visitors alike,” she said.

“As a community, we must understand the real issues and work together to achieve the best solutions. We must have all voices at the table.”

Ms Smith will take charge of the Great Southern Network program providing a digital platform to link stakeholders and businesses, host forums, and offer free online learning tools and an online directory.

“I aim to maintain the collaborative relationships that already exist and develop new ones so that the chamber can advocate on behalf of all the industries in the Great Southern region,” she said.

“I am also looking forward to working with the existing CCI project team to deliver the Great Southern Network initiative, so that the whole region benefits from the digital platform.”

She replaces former chief executive Benita Cattalini who left the chamber in August after more than two years in the role.

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