#wegiveascot about chatting with people who inspire us. For this edition of TwoScots Takes 2, we spoke with Todd Shand, the CFO of Cricket Australia. Todd is a fellow Glaswegian who moved over here 11 years ago. He joined Cricket Australia 9 years ago and he has progressed through the ranks from Financial Controller to Head of Finance to his current role as CFO.
Chatting with Todd was both interesting and refreshing – not only can we talk about the home country and reminisce about growing up in Glasgow but we both love our jobs and love life in Melbourne, plus Todd is highly passionate about the positive impact Cricket makes and how it unites and inspires communities.
We started our conversation talking about his role and the challenges it possesses as well as how he keeps his finger on the pulse both within his career and within his team. We finished off discussing the world of Cricket and Todd’s excitement with the forthcoming Men’s and Women’s ICC T20 World Cup’s coming to Australia next year.
Now, over to our chat…
- What do you see as key to your success in this role?
“Building a team who love their job and the business they work for. At Cricket we are all very passionate about what we do and what we are all working towards. You obviously need to also understand the business trends and ensure you have your finger on the pulse. This for me essentially means never stop trying to upskill both myself and my team”.
- What are the challenges impacting Cricket?
“Simply put, technology! When I grew up sport was played on the street. Playing sport used to be a gate post or a pile of jumpers but now we compete against online games and iPads. Technology has also changed how we even watch Cricket. From sitting on the couch watching Cricket with Dad, you now watch it on the iPhone.
We need to continue to grow cricket in the parks, the clubs and the community but at the same time ensuring we are at the forefront with technology and moving with the times, including providing great support to our volunteers”.
- With these changes how do you ensure you keep up your skills?
“Luckily at Cricket we have amazing partners who hold great forums for both information and learning. I’m also a great believer in Networking both for personal development as well as professionally with other industry leaders.
I also love reading and believe in self-development – I strongly believe there’s no such thing as a dumb question! If you don’t know don’t be afraid to ask”!
- We’d love to know about a time you had to pull a team together to resolve a problem.
“At cricket it’s a very collaborative environment where we engage people to contribute across the whole organisation not just from the top down. This was recently evident when we were trying to create a national financial system solution. We were having challenges around system development and we were looking for ways to work in a much more efficient manner. Rather than outsourcing or bringing in a subject expert we engaged the many and multiple talented people across Cricket. They got together and came up with solutions for our issues – basically with an inclusive collaborative people approach we achieved an amazing outcome with our own people”.
- Who inspires you and why?
“My family inspire me and drive me every day. I’m originally from Glasgow and since joining Cricket I have felt a part of an amazing Cricket community. That community feeling inspires me. I have seen so many amazing instances where families unite over their love of cricket or another sport. We are so excited for next year’s ICC T20 World Cup 2020 World Cup, with both the Men’s and Women’s World Cup taking place in Australia. I think seeing families sharing and supporting their Cricket teams is what it’s really all about”.
- How important is work/life balance and how do you switch off?
“The beauty of working at cricket is work can be pleasure and pleasure can be work. Everyone wants to speak to you at BBQ’s! It’s very important to prioritise what needs to be done and to turn your phone off if only for a few hours in the evening. Personally, I love watching sport and spending time with my family and friends, but whatever is important to you ensure you prioritise time to enjoy it”.
- What would be the one piece of advice you would tell a newly qualified Accountant?
“I’m a huge believer in asking questions; don’t ever stop asking questions in any parts of your life. Also get involved in as many projects and initiatives as you can and always remember change is your friend”!
Thanks Todd, for taking the time to chat with me and giving me some great insights.
I love these TwoScots Takes 2 conversations as I get to meet great people and great leaders from various industry sectors, and I can tell you chatting with Todd certainly didn’t disappoint. Simply put, Todd’s a good Scotsman who loves his job and the positive impact Cricket has on the community.
Watch out for next month’s instalment of TwoScots Takes 2.