Victoria Biggs is the Partner at Platinum Pacific Partners, a recognised provider of effective and bespoke executive search solutions.
1) To kick things off, could you tell us a little about your career background and current role?
When I graduated from university with a degree in modern languages, I was not sure what I wanted to do in a job. I went to see a bunch of recruitment consultancies to explore available roles and they turned the interviews around to offer me jobs at their companies instead of their clients.
While I had no idea what recruitment involved, I decided to put my faith into their belief that I could do it.
After circa 8 years working for one firm in London and two in Sydney, in 2008, I founded an executive search firm called Platinum Pacific Partners, I run this today. While the firm is broad, covering many sectors, I personally specialise in the Venture Capital and Private Equity sectors.
2) What does a day in your life look like for you? Can you take us through a recent workday?
Two things that attracted me to recruitment in the first place were the variety and the high degree of people interaction.
Each day is populated with many calls and meetings both in person and on Zoom with clients and candidates. Each consultant typically manages between 10-15 mandates at any one time with varying degrees of urgency and we are always pipelining talent.
We do this via referrals, our extensive database, Linkedin and advertising. The individuals we are dealing with are either working across Australia or are Australians/ Kiwis off-shore. The things that don’t change are the morning coffee first thing and the day’s to-do-list that gets re-written each morning. I love it a lot!
3) Does your current role allow for flexible or remote working? If so, how does that fit into your life and routine?
Yes, we always worked remotely/offered flexibility prior to Covid and we have stepped up in that regard. Some of our consultants are in the office 5 days a week, and some only two, and it depends on the personal preference of the individual.
The job itself can be done with a lap-top and phone from anywhere though most people in the industry are A-types who get their energy from other people and who typically enjoy being in the buzz of an office.
4) What does work-life balance mean to you and how do you work to achieve that goal?
To me, it is being able to be totally absorbed in the thing I am doing without distraction – and enjoying it. When I am at work, I want to be focused on that and conversely, throw myself into play too. I think that stress / allowing one activity to seep into another, is a good indicator that the balance is off.
5) In the past 12 months, have you started or stopped any routines or habits to change your life?
Walking every morning – a great start to the day!
6) Do you have any favourite books, podcasts or newsletters that you’d like to recommend?
I enjoy LOI which is a daily round up of M&A/ PE/ VC activity in Australia and produced by someone who was an investment banker in another life. It’s injected with a decent dose of humour which means what could be quite dry content becomes a morning highlight!
7) Are there any products, gadgets or apps that you can’t live without?
I recently discovered Remarkable which is an e-tablet that mimics the experience of writing on paper but can read your writing and upload your notes into digital format which we can send straight to our database. A good time saver.
8) If you could read an interview about work-life balance by anyone, who would that be?
Tim Ferriss, given he is the expert!
9) Do you have any last thoughts on work, life or balance that you’d like to share with our readers?
I don’t. I am no expert and we all just have to work out what works best for each of us – that can differ greatly from one person to the next. For example, it seems a lot of very successful people get up about 5.30am. I cannot think of anything worse!
My focus is more on feeling happy and content and sometimes, that involves a lot more work than other people would consider balanced. But I am lucky in that I really love what I do.
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