Glenda Wynyard is the Managing Director and Communication Architect at The Media Precinct, a Sydney-based media, content and community agency.
1) To kick things off, could you tell us a little about your career background and current role?
I started my career in marketing (in the early 80’s) as a junior working for Australia’s infamous Alan Bond. Back in those days he had massive property holdings / estates, Norman Ross and other businesses. I was based in the Gold Coast office.
From there I went to work in independent and network media agencies. I also tried my hand at working within media sales and research. I have a definite preference to work within agencies but I gained so much experience working in marketing, sales and research that certainly has helped my career.
Through my career I have been able to work on some amazing campaigns. These include conceptualising L’Oréal’s association with Fashion Week, creating everything from a L’Oréal postage stamp through to live television coverage; being the strategist behind one of MasterCard’s most successful credit cards; and contributing to the Coke Music strategy.
I have owned my own agency, Media Precinct, for nearly 5 years. We specialise in the not-for-profit, disruption, B2B, health and retail sectors. Apart from being the Managing Director, I am a media strategist. I am responsible for the research, insights and data analytics side of our business.
2) What does a day in the life look like for you? Can you take us through a recent workday?
Most days start at about 3am for me in my home office. This is when I do my best analysis and thinking because it is quiet. From there I head into the office so that I arrive about 7am.
My days tend to consist of meetings, answering questions, briefing sessions and general management functions. I tend to leave around 7pm. Once home I like to enjoy a meal with my husband and then watch a bit of television, listen to music or read. I am in bed by about 9:30pm with a good novel.
3) Does your current role allow for flexible or remote working? If so, how does that fit into your life and routine?
I can very easily work remotely if I chose to. However I found during lockdown that I tended to be at my desk at 3am and then not leave again until 930pm. It was extremely unhealthy for me. I welcomed going back into the office with open arms.
4) What does work-life balance mean to you and how do you work to achieve that goal?
I guess that I don’t really have a balance in the sense that this question means. I have a work-life balance because I am very fortunate to love what I do for a living.
I have also always been on the sea my whole life. Being on the water is extremely restorative for me. We try to get out on the water in our boat most weekends. I also try to travel somewhere each year where I don’t have to do anything I don’t want to. Just experience something new.
But, no matter where I go I am always connected to the office and I do try to keep my work bubbling along. And that is because I love it.
5) In the past 12 months, have you started or stopped any routines or habits to change your life?
Nothing really changed for me. I walked 32km last year to raise funds for cancer. That was a terrific experience as I did this with my mother. She lives in New Zealand and I live in Sydney, the event was in Perth but remotely we did it together and raised over $22,000.
6) Do you have any favourite books, podcasts or newsletters that you’d like to recommend?
Because I read so many research papers during my day I am an avid reader of novels. It is the way that I relax my brain each night.
I like paperbacks and I never read on a Kindle or iPad. I have a whole ritual I go through of reading about the author and then being the first to crack the spine. It gives me such pleasure to be the first.
I am known to be particularly fond of a gruesome murder but I also appreciate articulately, beautifully written novels that allow you to see or experience as the author writes.
I highly recommend The Eighth Life by Nino Haratischvili, A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles or Pachinko by Min Jin Lee. All three are well worth the investment of both time and money.
7) Are there any products, gadgets or apps that you can’t live without?
I can’t live without my phone. I try but I can’t.
Facebook is the one social app that is a fascination for me because it is like one huge research resource. I watch what people share and post all the time. It is like the world’s largest focus group with no filters because people say and share things that they would never do face to face.
I feel that we often forget to think about the people who help us run our daily lives. They are so much more interesting than an app! While there are times that I think I can, I also can’t live without my husband Grant. He and I have been together for over 30 years and we are a well oiled team.
A former chef, he gave up his career to raise our two wonderful, smart, sassy daughters and ensure our household runs relatively smoothly. We are each other’s best friends and sparring partners. He has supported my career and makes sure that I have either coffee or wine at the appropriate ends of the day.
8) If you could read an interview about work-life balance by anyone, who would that be?
No one. And the reason that I say this is that a) I will never read it (see question 6) and b) their lives are not mine.
9) Do you have any last thoughts on work, life or balance that you’d like to share with our readers?
If there is one thing that time has taught me it is to be happy to live your own life. Don’t worry about what others think or say about you. Be your best and not someone else’s. Set yourself your own expectations. Be comfortable in your own skin. Do what you love to do. And just be happy because this is where you will find the balance you are searching for.
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