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Drinks leaders discuss vulnerability in the workplace

Drinks leaders discuss vulnerability in the workplace

The benefits of embracing vulnerability in the workplace were explored at the latest Embrace Difference event In South Australia.

Coopers Brewery hosted the South Australian Chapter event on November 14, with almost 50 people attending from organisations including Treasury Wine Estates, Samuel Smith & Son, Pernod Ricard Winemakers, Wine Australia, Coopers Brewery and The University of Adelaide.

An optional tour of Coopers Brewery prior to the event was well received, with most of the attendees opting in.

Another highlight was the panel session (pictured main) facilitated by Rachel Triggs, who posed a series of insightful questions to Melanie Cooper, Andreas Clark and Gemma West. Discussion revolved around how to bring your best self to work, feeling vulnerable and facing adversity.

The audience was highly responsive and engaged by the panellists speaking so openly when answering the tough questions, with Triggs drawing out raw and authentic answers.

Panellists explored moments when they felt vulnerable at the boardroom table and asked themselves if they really belonged there; battling chronic pain and needing to be honest and authentic about the extent of the pain to an employer; and sharing conversations with their team to individually rate themselves for their efforts at work, home and as a parent or partner.

Guests were encouraged to open themselves up to their teams and explore not just work-related topics, although they are important, but also non-related work topics including family, sport, personal values, health and wellbeing to build better interpersonal relationships.

The panel emphasised that being open to those conversations ultimately builds stronger relationships, team work and results.

Brené Brown, whose 'The Power of Vulnerability' is one of the top five most viewed TED talks in the world with over 35 million views, was quoted several times throughout the session.

One quote, which she famously retold from Theodore Roosevelt, struck a particular chord with the crowd: “It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because this is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly.”