Sarah, Senior Partner, Alex Kaar, recruiters
Sarah comes from a family who are fifth generations surgeons and GPs, so working in healthcare is in her DNA. Sarah has worked in recruitment for the past 25 years and has specialised in healthcare recruitment for the past 15 years, which includes working alongside healthcare professionals, including serving on two hospital foundation Boards. Sarah spoke of her experience ‘I’ve spent many years working across public and private health, aged care, community care, home care, primary and secondary care, pharmaceutical and biotechnology.
"I love what I do and I love making a difference to people’s lives. No two days are ever the same and I love the diversity of people I work with."
Sarah spoke to us about her passion for working in the sector and the unique qualities people in the sector have. ‘As a little girl, I did hospital rounds with my Dad and was in awe (and still am now) of the incredible dedication to patient care demonstrated in all the staff, from orderlies, to nurses, senior clinicians and administrators. I have always said that healthcare is more of a vocation than a career and attracts people with strong values and high standards and I really enjoy working with these people’.
"I have always said that healthcare is more of a vocation than a career and attracts people with strong values and high standards and I really enjoy working with these people."
We asked Sarah to talk to us about a time in her career when she’s faced real challenge and adversity ‘The most challenging period for me was probably when I had my own business during the Global Financial Crisis and the aftermath. I had offices and staff all around Australia and literally overnight the market crashed. I learned a lot about resilience and leadership during that time and whilst I do feel I did some things correctly, there were many things I would do differently given the chance.’
When asked what Sarah thinks have been the main challenges for the healthcare sector in the past year, she said ‘I think the main challenges have been around workforce planning and fatigue. The pandemic has really highlighted the skill shortages faced by all healthcare organisations and also the need for exceptional workforce planning. In addition, healthcare workers were pushed to the brink and in many cases have born the brunt of unwarranted criticism. My experience in the healthcare sector is that it is full of wonderful and dedicated staff who deserve the highest recognition for their efforts, rather than the contrary.’
"My experience in the healthcare sector is that it is full of wonderful and dedicated staff who deserve the highest recognition for their efforts, rather than the contrary."
We asked Sarah to share her advice for anyone facing challenges in their career ‘My advice would be to talk to a mentor, career advisor or trusted associate to identify the source of the challenge and work through different scenarios towards a solution. Most challenges can be overcome, but it is important to ascertain the root cause and work from there. It’s important to be resilient and practical when facing challenges – there’s always a way forward!
"It’s important to be resilient and practical when facing challenges – there’s always a way forward!"
And finally, we asked Sarah to tell us why it’s so important to celebrate International Women’s Day and she said ‘Women are amazing! Most women I know personally and professionally have enormous capacity to balance all aspects of life and do so with resilience, humility, dedication and humour.’