Home New

Is creativity your passion?  Read Meg's career journey and advice

Is creativity your passion? Read Meg's career journey and advice

Meg Davis, General Manager, Creative Bay of Plenty

What did you want to be when you were 16?
I had no idea. None. I really struggled to imagine myself in a ‘dream job’ as there were so many things I liked, but very few which fit neatly into a defined job. I still sometimes wonder what I want to do when I grow up!

What did you end up doing when you left school?
After High School, I had a gap year. I moved to a little surf town and worked in hospitality. I remember my friends telling me I would never go on to do further study, but in fact, it was quite the opposite! Although I had a blast, working 18 hour days and missing out on every weekend, it solidified that I wanted to go to University. I studied Business because of my uncertainty of my career path, and it turned out to be right up my alley. I started my career in Property Development, tried out the Travel Industry for size and then got into a role in Human Resources in the Finance Industry. I have now moved countries and started in the Arts sector. It is amazing to think where the past 12 years have taken me – and I can't wait to see the next 12! 

Describe a day in your life at work:
My role is really dynamic, the days fly by. Generally, it is filled with meeting interesting people and understanding what synergies and collaboration opportunities exist between our organisations. I might meet with members of the Council, the Art Gallery or perhaps even the Chamber of Commerce. I get quite a lot of emails too, so some of my day is spent ensuring that I am answering my colleagues so we can make progress on projects. Sometimes I get to meet with artists as well, which is always really exciting. I also get to do Strategy implementation, write reports and media updates and speak with members of our board. My role requires a lot of energy, patience and big-picture thinking. It also involves a lot of coffee. We have two other team members in the office, as well as an office dog Nellie. I make sure I spend a bit of time patting her too!

Why do you love your job/career?
I love that it is dynamic and that I get to meet so many interesting people. I look forward to working alongside the creative community, making a positive difference to life in the Western Bay of Plenty.

How did you get into your career?
Persistence. Being open to new opportunities. Being open to meeting new people. Putting your hand up for projects, even if they are hard. Asking for feedback, and making changes to what I do.

What qualifications did you study?
I completed a Bachelor of Commerce, with a triple major in Management, Industrial Relations and Human Resources.

Do you have any advice for getting into your sector?
Have an authentic reason for approaching the industry that you want to work in. Ask people that have been in similar sectors what it's like to work in that space. Find a mentor. As much as it can be scary, say YES to awkward networking events.

What do you wish you had done differently?
Nothing. We are here, exactly where we are meant to be.

What would you say to your teenage self about defining your future?
Strap in, young Meg. First and foremost, believe that you are good enough. Because you are. Keep putting your hand up, and keep smiling, even if it is through gritted teeth. There are the hard days, but you have more days that are super great to look forward to. Don’t take yourself too seriously, as you may miss the curve of a smile in others. Surround yourself with a sisterhood of big hearts and call your mother more. Your path is whatever you choose to tread.

Title Creative Sector