Meet Sam McConkey- COO at Sidekicker

3rd Jul, 2020 | Sidekicker Updates

Welcome to the final day of our International Women’s Day Love What You Do Series. This week we are recognising some of the women who are furthering their dreams and goals by taking advantage of the flexible work Sidekicker provides as well as celebrating those in our business who back them. Our Sidekick community is made up of people from all walks of life. Their backgrounds, their passions and their stories are part of what makes them so good at what they do. Sam is part of the leadership team at Sidekicker, an ex-owner of a pet kangaroo and a fierce advocate for women in start-up.

Where were you working before Sidekicker?

A Management Consulting firm – L.E.K. Consulting

Tell us something unique about yourself

I grew up on a wheat and sheep farm in country Western Australia, and was home-schooled by my parents up until high-school.  I also had a pet kangaroo.

How did you land your job at Sidekicker?

I was approached by SEEK around the time Sidekicker closed their first round of funding with SEEK. I went through a long interview process and joined the team in June 2016.  

What does International Women’s Day mean to you?

IWD is an opportunity for me to be reminded that, as a male, I’ve inherited a fundamentally different set of circumstances, beliefs and biases than my female counterparts.  I’m not always conscious of those differences, but it doesn’t mean that they are not there. In my opinion, it’s impossible for significant change to occur unless men acknowledge those differences, take responsibility for their contributions towards the current status quo, and drive the movement towards equality in all its forms.

Coolest thing you’ve done at Sidekicker?

Contribute to this blog post series.  

What was your first job?

My first real job was as a parts assistant at a local farm machinery dealership.  

What did you career pathway look like?

I studied Law at University, but decided to go into strategy consulting after graduation.  I spent ~ 8 years in consulting, including a period of time off to complete an MBA in the U.S., before joining Sidekicker in 2016.

What did you want to be when you were younger?

Same as now, either a rockstar or an athlete.  

What’s one piece of advice you’d give to someone who wants to work in a startup?

There are a lot of misconceptions about working in a startup.  Sure, there’s ping pong tables, branded hoodies and bean bags. But there’s also lots of uncertainty, ambiguity and rapid change.  These are the reasons I love working at Sidekicker, but they are not for everyone. Make sure the reasons you want to work for a startup are the right reasons.  But, provided they are, do it – it’s awesome.

Why do you love what you do?

Sidekicker is a chance to help influence the future of work, but also a chance build a product, build a team and build a company from very early days.  That opportunity doesn’t come around very often, and I’m grateful for the chance to be part of it.