It was the summer of 2008. In Australia summer means long days stretched out on the sand at the beach, salty hair, the smell of sunscreen, and my favourite — the feeling of a warm breeze around bare shoulders.
At that time I had been working in advertising for just over a year. The Campaign Palace operated in a very flat corporate structure, so in a short time I'd had exposure to all parts of the brand-building process — brand strategy development, media-buying strategy, the creative process and, finally, execution. There was a lighthearted sense of quirky fun that permeated the workplace and a lot of learning on the job that I loved. I was finally starting to understand that I learned best by doing and I started to feel at home.
Michael Fox and I had married in September 2006 and moved to Sydney in 2007. He'd started out with a graduate stint in law at Clayton Utz, another major law firm, followed by a graduate role at Super Cheap Auto. At that time, it was the fastest growing retail business in Australia. Michael was the first graduate they'd taken on, and under the wing of the CEO he was given an in-depth operational experience of the entire business, alongside him doing his MBA. The program shifted significantly after his first year and he went on to Google, at the urging of his best friend and a groomsman at our wedding, Mike Knapp.
Mike had worked at Google from very early on in the establishment of the Australian office. He'd graduated law and ...