Fraser Gow's decision to change careers into the insurance industry and study a Master of Business Administration (Leadership) at CQUniversity has earned him a "Rising Star" accolade from Insurance Business Australia.
The Brisbane-based student who recently completed his MBA (Leadership) while working as Head of Customer Service/Head of Direct Portfolio for CHU Underwriting Agencies.
"I made the switch to insurance after 13 years in travel management and leadership - when COVID hit it affected my wage and career prospects significantly'" Fraser said.
"I decided to lean on my service and leadership experience with a role as a customer service team leader' believing I could potentially leverage some career development after an introductory role in the industry."
Fraser said he enrolled in CQU's MBA (Leadership) to improve his career prospects.
"I had always believed that an MBA would benefit my career in the long run'" he said.
"I knew that a C-suite position was my long-term career goal' and I wanted to give myself the best shot possible; not just from a qualification point of view but in terms of developing my management capability."
Not having undertaken any studies for 16 years' Fraser admits taking on the MBA has been challenging' but the rewards have more than made up for it.
"I've been able to use almost every single part of the MBA in the scope of my role responsibilities'" he said.
"The way the CQU MBA (Leadership) is structured puts a lot of emphasis around applying theoretical concepts in your workplace' so I have been able to form concepts and write reports to present to the CEO about business improvements and concepts like lean systems thinking that have ultimately contributed to my quick progression."
He said being named in the 2022 Insurance Business Australia Rising Stars was great recognition.
"It is wonderful to be recognised for hard work put in' especially this early in my insurance career. Additionally' I was nominated for the award by our CEO Kim Jonnson' which underpins the efforts I've put in over the last two years.
"believe effective leadership comes from being able to communicate well' the ability to engage and motivate team members' asking for and being accepting of feedback' and being open to change in a fast-paced and dynamic global business landscape."
He encouraged anyone considering studying CQU's MBA (Leadership) not to be apprehensive.
"I completely understand the apprehension around putting time aside to study' and I know this first-hand as someone with a demanding career and a two-year-old at home. The nature of CQUniversity's flexible and self-paced MBA program was integral to my ability to study; I did not have the time or resources to attend lectures or be locked into semesters or deadlines' but I could put time aside around my busy schedule.
"There were times that I was able to speed through my coursework and assignments' but there were also times that I couldn't study for weeks at a time. If you are worried about sparing the time to study' rest assured I was able to complete the course in 20 months (with the guidance and support of mentors' fellow students and the wonderful academic team) with an average dedication of roughly 12 hours of study/week.
"CQU's MBA (Leadership) has given me an incredible insight into the roles and responsibilities of executive leadership and given me the skills necessary to implement change on a grand scale. The confidence that comes with mastering a domain cannot be understated and I am incredibly excited for where the qualification can take me."