Finance / Interviews

Balancing the Grind with Lorene Hunt, Chief Financial Officer at Amplitel

Lorene Hunt is the Chief Financial Officer at Amplitel, one of Australia’s leading provider of tower infrastructure.

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Let’s start with your background! Can you share with us your career journey and what you’re currently up to?

I started out as an Auditor with Ernst & Young in New Zealand. I found this to be a brilliant start despite the long hours as there was a high investment in my personal development. It also gave me valuable insights into multiple industries and different areas of accounting. 

I then went to Telstra’s NZ subsidiary, TelstraClear, which started my love of telecommunications and infrastructure. The complexity and dynamic nature of the industry always keeps me on my toes! A number of years ago, I left NZ to come over to Australia with my family and worked with Optus in the Commercial/Networks team. I am now the CFO at Amplitel and I love working here.

We have an amazing and passionate team always striving to make a genuine difference. I’m excited to be a part of it.

We’d love to know what a typical day is like for you. Could you describe a recent workday?

Every single day is different for me, although one thing is guaranteed – a lot of Teams meetings!  My team is spread all around the country so making sure I catch up with them is always a priority.  The rest will largely depend on the time of month/year – reviewing month-end results, preparing for Board meetings, catching up with key customers or suppliers, or meeting with internal teams to help drive strategic programs. I love the variety!

Can you define work-life balance for yourself and share with us your approach in maintaining it?

Achieving work life balance has always been a challenge – I find it far too easy to pick up my laptop, and keep working until 2am in the morning once the kids are in bed! 

But finding balance is critical – I have an 8 year old and a 10 year old, they are both still at the stage where they really like spending time with me (which I know won’t last forever) so I try to enjoy as much time with them as I can.  I really take advantage of the flexibility offered by Amplitel and technology allows me to work effectively from anywhere.

Sometimes I will be working while I sit outside a basketball court or while the kids are in a swimming lesson. It has been a phenomenal (but long overdue) switch for me in terms of the flexibility that is now the norm in corporate culture post-COVID. I also surround myself with a great team that I trust and can rely on.

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Change is constant, and it’s essential for growth. Have you made any lifestyle changes in the past year to improve your work-life balance?

This year I have been using my lunch breaks a lot more to go to the gym!  I’m not really a morning person, I found myself getting caught up more and more at the end of the day and was never getting out for a run, so I have been going to F45 during lunch a couple of times a week. I love this routine and it motivates me to step away from my laptop and meetings for an hour during the day, and really helps me re-energise for the afternoon.

We’re always on the lookout for new resources! Can you recommend any books, podcasts, or newsletters that have helped you in your journey towards balance?

I find Richard Branson and his methods of challenging the norm fascinating, so I read a fair bit on that subject. I struggle to find time for books and podcasts, so I really love Blinkist! It summarises a range of great texts into small ‘blinks’ about 6-10 pages long, so you can get the overall key themes before deciding whether to invest more time in the actual book itself. This has been really useful for me

Before we wrap up, do you have any final words of wisdom or insights on work, life, or balance that you’d like to share with our readers?

Work life balance isn’t a one-time activity that you achieve, but more of an on-going cycle as circumstances change.  There are going to be ebbs and flows, and I find you need to constantly review, re-prioritise and implement a variety of strategies to maintain a healthy work life balance.

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About Author

Hey there! I'm Hao, the Editor-in-Chief at Balance the Grind. We’re on a mission to showcase healthy work-life balance through interesting stories from people all over the world, in different careers and lifestyles.