Gillian Davie

Gillian is a Non-Executive Director with ASX C-suite experience and commercial leadership. She has a depth of experience in leading workforces through times of crisis, re-building, transformation and major change in large complex businesses both domestically and overseas.

Gillian has experienced the full gamut of business challenges including start up, acquisition, accelerated growth and business “right sizing”.  She led the People Plan for the divestment of the Woolworths Home Improvement business (Home Timber & Hardware sale and Masters closure) in 2016.  The latter resulted in the displacement of over 7,000 employees which was successfully executed without industrial action or negative media. She was also responsible for NZ’s largest private workforce through the Christchurch Earthquakes, recovery and rebuild.

Most recently as an ASX Chief People Officer, completed the NetComm (ASX:NTC) acquisition integration when acquired by Casa Systems Inc (NASDAQ: CASA) and delisted from the ASX.

Through extensive experience in leading large complex teams within transformative environments, has the unique ability to identify and remedy strategy execution weaknesses and culture risks that impact organisational decision making.

She is Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, has a Bachelor of Business Management/HR, Graduate Certificate in Adult Education and Graduate Certificate of HR.

what boards and committees do you currently sit on?

Scouts Australia, Hills United Football Club and Chair/Convenor of the inaugural MyWOBSX group.

When and why did you decide to pursue boards?

My executive career had always been in ASX listed companies and I had previously sat on a Government Board and a Not for Profit Board. About 4 or 5 years ago I started having more involvement with ASX Boards and I really enjoyed that experience – that’s when I decided to pursue a board career.

I love the governance and balance of working within a governance framework whilst also ensuring the potential of the people and the company is realised through board decisions.

What challenges and hurdles have you had to overcome in pursuing board roles and/or serving on boards? 

Initially moving out of the c-suite mindset.  I had always identified myself as a c-suite executive and moving that identity was a challenge.  I’m very clear now what I bring to a board but there was a time I really struggled to answer the question – why me?

Have you had mentors and/or sponsors and have they helped you? if so, how?

Definitely.  Currently I speak with 3 Non-Executive Directors who I bounce ideas off and get their views/advice on how I should approach certain situations.  They are all quite different and come with different perspectives which is what I need and value.

How did WOB help you in your journey to the boardroom?

I completed the WOBSX program in 2019 which was fantastic and gave me the confidence and right mindset to pursue my Board Career. The guest speakers were high calibre and in fact that’s how I met one of my mentors. 

Any tips for women starting out their journey to the boardroom?

1) Be clear about what sets you apart from others and what you bring to the board.

2) Waiting for a board that is right for you, aligned to your values and interests. Anything else won’t allow you to be your best self.

3) Invest in this journey and yourself:  education (the AICD program), Director Development (WOBSX program) and network.