IWD at Sidekicker – Meet Our Female Leaders

22nd Jun, 2020 | Sidekicker Updates

Marian Wright Edelman once famously said, “You can’t be what you can’t see.”

And with women founding only 5 percent of startups, we thought we should make some serious noise about our female co-founder and the incredible women who hold senior positions in our tech startup so young women and girls all around Australia can see what’s possible.

A few stats to kick us off:

1. In the tech industry, the quit rate is more than twice as high for women (41 percent) than it is for men (17 percent)

2. They earn only 28 percent of computer science degrees

3. For women in the tech industry under age 25, earnings on average are 29 percent less than their male counterparts

4. About 74 percent of young girls express interest in STEM fields and computer science. Looking at the above statistics, it’s obvious these girls are deterred.

Let’s jump into it:


Meet Jacqui Bull- Our Co-Founder and finalist for the Veuve Clicquot New Generation Award.


How did you become the Co-Founder of a startup that is now one of Australia’s fastest growing businesses, is backed by SEEK, and just won an award named “The Coolest Company” in Australia?

I started my career in marketing and accounting but always had the desire to start my own business.

At age 22, the opportunity came to startup Sidekicker, with the idea that people looking to work and someone looking to get a job done should be able to instantly connect via easy to use technology.


What’s your favourite thing about your job?

I love the continuous learning I get to do in my job. As a founder, there is always a new problem arising that needs to be solved. I’m driven by the impact that technology has to make people’s lives simpler and easier and the reward that comes with building a workplace people love to come to every day.


What’s one piece of advice you’d give to a young woman looking to have a career in your field of expertise?


Don’t buy into your preconceived ideas about an industry. Whether that be an unequal gender ratio in an industry or assuming you should do things the way they ‘have always been done’, bring your own fresh eyes to the situation.


What does International Women’s Day mean to you?

International women’s day to me is about encouraging the next generation of females to take bold moves by showcasing women doing inspiring things. A huge part of being successful is having confidence in your own ability, and this can come from seeing someone else’s success and being inspired to think ‘why can’t I do that?



Meet Kate Claringbold – Chief Product Officer at Sidekicker


How did end up in a role as Sidekicker’s Chief Product Officer?

I studied IT at uni but realised pretty quickly I didn’t want to be an engineer. This led to a role in Deloitte’s digital forensics arm. Which was interesting, but again not my thing. Moved into a business analyst role for a digital startup Deloitte bought. This sparked my interest and passion in product development, long before product manager roles even existed.

Since then highlights have been:

– 3 years in Barcelona where I was fortunate enough to run the digital arm of a hotel booking site

– Founding an online gift registry business with my husband and a good friend

– 5 years at seek.com.au

– Now working at Sidekicker with an amazing group of people


What’s your favourite thing about your job?

Every day I contribute to giving Sidekicks the ability to stand-out using the skills they have and find meaningful work with companies they’re interested in.


What’s one piece of advice you’d give to a young woman looking to have a career in your field of expertise?

Sorry I can’t do just one….

1. Accept that technology and roles within the tech space are rapidly changing so any previous generations career journeys are pretty much irrelevant to what you’ll experience.

2. Just keep up to date with what’s new and emerging, build your skill sets accordingly, plot your path on how you want to achieve your goals, surround yourself with great inspiring people and then relentlessly back yourself.

3. And finally don’t forget to be just as passionate and focused about everything else in your life – family, friends, health and wealth.


What does International Women’s Day mean to you?

Acknowledging the impact, great work and struggles women have gone through to help get us to today. And finally celebrating the opportunities of tomorrow.


Meet Ellie Amos – The Country Manager for Sidekicker New Zealand


How did you find your way to becoming the Country Manager for New Zealand?

I started off nursing at the Royal Melbourne Hospital, nursing was incredibly rewarding but I knew that shift work wasn’t for me.

When I moved to London I wanted to try something different and ended up running a Neurosurgeon private clinic in Harley Street. I then moved to NZ, where I jumped on board with Sidekicker as they launched, and I’ve been responsible for growing the business in New Zealand ever since.


What’s your favourite thing about your job?

There are so many things I love!

I love that we’re constantly achieving so much as a company. If I look back at what the start to the finishing line of 2017 was like, I get blown away!

I love that as we grow as a business, I am constantly surrounded by so many super passionate and intelligent people that keep me learning and it makes me even more excited to be working for Sidekicker.

I love that we give Sidekicks an opportunity to earn an income and simply put food on their table. I love that I get to challenge a market and change the way entire businesses manage their staffing.


What’s one piece of advice you’d give to a young woman looking to have a career in your field of expertise?

I went from nursing to being a GM of an entire country so my once piece of advice is believe in yourself and trust your gut and your capabilities. In a workplace everyone has a different skill set, don’t let this intimidate you, instead learn from your colleagues and be determined to achieve your goals.


What does International Women’s Day mean to you?

At Sidekicker and in my personal life I am surrounded by so many truly dedicated, hard working and inspiring women. International women’s day is a time celebrate these women and also encourage younger generations to believe in their dreams and inspire them to give themselves the opportunities to reach their full potential.



Meet Charlotte Hill – General Manager for Sidekicker Queensland

How did you find your way to becoming the The General Manager for Queensland?

I am a reformed banker. Not that I didn’t enjoy being a banker, I worked with some incredibly smart people who taught me a lot, not just about banking, but about my strengths and weaknesses. After a perilous job on ANZs trading floor, I decided to take a risk and move to New York to work in Fintech. A failed start, I fell in love along the way, and found myself living in Brisbane. With my new found sense of freedom, thirst for challenges and experience gained in a quick stint in New York’s startup world, I backed myself and began working with Australian startups and tech businesses as a contractor. Sidekicker came knocking, which was a lovely surprise, and after I met Sidekicker’s management team and felt a strong sense of connection. I knew where I wanted to be and I haven’t look back.


What’s your favourite thing about your job?

I am privileged of being in a generalist position whereby I get to be involved in so many elements of the business. This enables me to keep learning and developing. However, the biggest piece of enjoyment I take from my job is when my team have had a win, because that means either one of our Sidekicks, or a client has had a win, and we as a business and as individuals are growing in competence and confidence at the same time.


What’s one piece of advice you’d give to a young woman looking to have a career in your field of expertise?

Embrace risk. I have made seemingly risky moves throughout my career, avoiding a linear path. This has meant I have diverse skills and experiences which I can apply to my current role. These moves have filled me with confidence, as in each role I have been able to achieve wins, despite in many cases not having the competence and experience in that field.

What does International Womens Day mean to you?

I don’t know where to begin to answer this. I believe no matter what a person’s gender, ethnicity, beliefs etc are that we are all deserving. I am incredibly humbled by the talented women and men who have paved the way for women to achieve and be recognised for their contribution. I hope that one day I can leave as great a legacy.


Meet Jess Hackett, Sidekicker’s Head of Marketing

How did you find your way to becoming the Head of Marketing for Sidekicker?

After completing a Bachelor of Arts with a double major in History and Politics, I realised that the Arts probably weren’t for me – I love being challenged to think intellectually as well as creatively and commercially, and never wanted to write another opinion essay again! I also wanted to make some money, let’s be honest! I fell into a sales role at a publisher – starting out in their magazine sector, I was instantly gravitating towards the small little ‘digital’ pod in the corner of the office. I don’t know why, but there was just something about digital that I absolutely loved. From there I moved through various digital, marketing and sales roles, with each one refining more and more what I loved. And I feel like I’ve finally reached the peak with my job here at Sidekicker!

What’s your favourite thing about your job?

Without a doubt, the thing that I value most in my job are the people I work with. When you’re around them more than pretty much anyone else in your life, I think it’s so crucial to have people that can challenge you, inspire you, teach you, make you better, and make you laugh on a daily basis. So for me, my favourite thing is the team I get to work with.

What’s one piece of advice you’d give to a young woman looking to have a career in your field of expertise?

I believe the biggest reason for any of the success I’ve achieved in my career is understanding that no one really knows what they’re doing – we’re all just faking it until we make it, learning and figuring it all out together as we go, and if you believe in yourself and back yourself you’ll go far! I think it’s super important to have empathy, and know that feedback and collaboration, whether it’s negative or positive, is always an awesome opportunities to learn and grow.

What does International Women’s Day mean to you?

I have so many incredible women who have and continue to support me in my life, for which I’m super grateful. The bond that women have with one another is nothing short of miraculous, and we should cherish and support each other, and never see each other as a threat. To me, International Women’s Day is an awesome opportunity for us to remember this, and celebrate each other, and support each other in whatever journey we’re on.

Meet Arna Jade – General Manager of Sidekicker Victoria

How did you find your way to becoming the The General Manager for Victoria?

I left school in year 10 – disenchanted by how little I felt the learnings were relevant to me. In pursuit of a career I went into accounting. A half finished degree and again disillusioned about what I thought accounting was vs the tedious nature of my tasks. I had a few CFO roles and then found myself working in Data Security, predominantly servicing the oil and gas industry. I worked across the US. We had projects of national significance and I even got to play around with data from NASA’s Apollo 11 & 12 missions. Dream job right? But ultimately the projects in Oil & Gas lined the pockets of people whose pockets were already heavily lined. I wanted to divert my skills and energy into businesses that wanted to help others. Companies that wanted to make a difference, and really cared about innovation. So I started a consultancy, opened up a co-working space, became an investment facilitator into early stage startups, in some cases achieving $10M+ in investment into my clients businesses. After a few years in the states, I really wanted to get back to Australia and sink my teeth into a company doing something different. I was actually using the Sidekicker platform before I even worked for them, so that in itself already validated the model in my mind, then when I met the team, I was sold. My journey with the company so far has been truly astounding, I can’t wait to see what the future years hold.


What’s your favourite thing about your job?

The people. Not just internally, but all of our clients, partners and vendors. There is something to be said about the Law of Attraction – Sidekicker is the type of place that just attracts collaborative energy and it is seen throughout all those who interact with it. From our largest clients, to our once a year users – all of my experiences with them so far have been great. My team in particular really work closely with me, and support me. We have a one in all in mentality and it really drives us all to keep doing better.


What’s one piece of advice you’d give to a young woman looking to have a career in your field of expertise?

Choose a mentor. It is sometimes difficult to find women in the same field who can offer both advice and support. But having a mentor who has faced the same challenges and succeeded in the same journey is very useful to bounce off ideas and get inspired. Be wary of those selling ‘mentorship’. A mentor is someone who will offer you career advice and maybe even opportunities, at no cost, purely out of their own philanthropic decency.


What does International Women’s Day mean to you?

It is a great way for women to express and exemplify their achievements but in the same breath without being exclusionary. Because really, many of us are fighting for inclusion – so let’s not exclude others in our pursuit of all things fair.  

Meet Stephanie Drilon, Head of Sidekick Operations

How did you find your way to becoming Head of Sidekick Operations?

I worked in sustainability consulting in London helping companies understand their ethical and environmental risks and improve the way they work. When I got back to Melbourne, I ended up working for Sidekicker for a month helping to improve Sidekick on-boardings. I loved Sidekicker so much I never left!


What’s your favourite thing about your job?

I love that Sidekicker has given me the opportunity to work in lots of different areas and learn new skills I never thought I’d have! I could be developing a new marketing campaign one day and learning to write code another.

No two days are ever the same.

I also love that I can wear jeans and a t-shirt to work, that I get to work with the most amazing people, and that every day gives more sidekicks opportunities to work with awesome businesses like ours.


What’s one piece of advice you’d give to a young woman looking to have a career in your field of expertise?

Learn from the people you’re around, whether it’s friends, family, colleagues or strangers. Take the time to catch up for coffee, talk about what you have in common and what makes you different, and maintain those relationships. You’ll end up with a heap of knowledge, connections and friends for life.


What does International Women’s Day mean to you?

International Women’s Day is about celebrating the amazing achievements of women around the world. Everyone is capable of enacting change and achieving more than they think! It reminds me how incredibly lucky I am to work and be friends with everyday super women.