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Learn from your mistakes

20 November 2016

International speaker, author, and award-winning leader Lucy Perry says courage, bold communication, kindness and fun are the most important things she has learnt throughout her career.

Lucy shared her advice and what she has learnt from her mistakes at the REINSW Women in Real Estate (WIRE) Conference which was recently held in Sydney.

She is currently the CEO of Sunrise Cambodia in Australia which works with at-risk kids, families and communities and in her previous job she helped raise $7 million whilst the CEO of Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia

She is also the author of the bestselling book which accompanies the program, Cheers to Childbirth, which was inspired by her Beer and Bubs childbirth education program for dads at the pub.

Lucy’s top career tips

During Lucy’s career she has met and worked with many people who have inspired her, including Geraldine Cox (Member of the Order of Australia) and Dr Catherine Hamlin (Companion of the Order of Australia). These are some of the things she has learnt on her career journey.

Be courageous 

“Some of the things I have learnt over the years have been profound and been learnt from some amazing people I have met.

“My number one learning is about courage. Anyone I have ever worked with who has really done amazing things is really courageous. I am not talking about jumping out of a plane into a war zone, I am talking about corporate courage.

“I often feel fear in my stomach but if you can handle and push through it and show up anyway, amazing things happen on the other side.

“What is the worse thing that can happen? We are not in an industry where someone dies - usually it the fear is about a loss of money or loss of face, which is a risk worth taking.”

Bold communication

“I learnt that bold communication goes a long way from Jane Caro who writes some fantastic stuff. I’ll never forget reading an article she wrote in 2014 which said it is nice to be nice but better to be brave and bold.

“It explained how we are trying so hard to be politically correct that we end up not being heard and it takes boldness and the willingness to offend some people to make people hear you.

“As a result I changed the way I wrote and it was much more punchy. I remember doing a Facebook post that had a reach 100 times more than I expected. It annoyed some people but it got heard.”


“Those who are really successful are kind to the core. Imagine if every single strategic plan had a section which covered kindness. 

“In real estate you do some of the most difficult transactions people do in their whole life. A couple getting divorced often need to sell the Selling the marital home, which  sucks, but having a kind  and we had the kindest agent which madecan make such a difference.”


“Most importantly I have learnt fun is a crucial part of what you do. People will stay longer and you will have a lower staff turnover if people working around you are having a good time.

“It is the same with your customers, so look at where you can put the fun in things. There is a lot of celebration to be had in real estate and you need to celebrate the successes.”