My professional profile is at Corporate Canary’s main site and you can read it there, however I wanted to give you a more of an insight into my personal interests, views and background.

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Anne-Marie Orrock


What lead you to a career in Human Resources?

Human Resources was not a developed career path as it is now and ‘back in my day’ it was still very much a ‘personnel’ administrative function of paying employees and setting them up with an employee file. So it wasn’t a career I was aware of until all the fuss around Training Guarantee Act of 1990 (OMG! remember that?) peaked my interest. I was temping with an accounting firm and the HR person there and I just clicked. I asked her about her career and what she did and I was very interested. What captured me the most was that it held broad disciplines that you could specialise in, was dealing with the most challenging and complex entities on this earth – i.e, people, (then later out I found out that it was really CEO’s & MD’s that claim this fame) and if the philosophy of true and outstanding HR practice was adopted by an organisation, the ability to enhance individuals purpose in life through good leadership and meaningful work. I still maintain that view today…

What do you enjoy the most about Corporate Canary?

I think it would be helping a client realising a solution and their seeing and feeling their relief and motivation around being a better company, or a better leader. Also when a client starts to see a shift like better quality candidates, better profits, behavioural change. It’s times like these that I know  it’s worth it. One of my most proud moments was when a CEO called me into his office with excitement when reviewing the company P&L. He said this is really working! We have had 3 successive quarters of 50% profit during one of the worlds biggest recessions. See his testimonial on how they made a $112 million profit. Also the satisfaction of helping companies save tens of thousands of dollars just by investing in a few. It makes a big difference to them.

What is one thing that many don’t know about you?

I was (and still am, I guess) a qualified make-up artist for film and television. Since I was a child, television and movie make up, and special effects fascinated me. I took what is now called a ‘sabbatical’ for a year, and studied for 12 months at the 3 Arts Make Up Academy gaining a Diploma in Theatrical Make Up Art. I am quite proud of it as there are many self proclaimed ‘make up artists’ out there who have never been qualified. I am also still creative and am trained in advanced video production. I am in creative with video, not just in my business, but for family and friends to create special productions & DVD’s of special events like birthdays, weddings, etc.

….OK… and I was also a bit of a Goth in the late 80’s…I have said it now…let’s move on…..:-)

When you are not working what interests you in life?

Not working? What is that? Seriously though, what interests me?

I travel to music festivals and camp out as often as I can (Woodford, Bellingen Global Music Festival, Peats Ridge, etc..) It’s the hippy in me that refuses to die.

I volunteer and run a Job Seeking Skills group through a community program. They use my Outplacement course called ‘Take Flight’ Career Advancement Transition (CAT) Program to help them gain the skills to secure a job. I am passionate about helping people find their true purpose through work.

I also volunteer with a Bereavement Ministry and Support Group through my son’s school and church. I studied a post graduate diploma in counseling with a triple major in contemporary work place counseling, career counseling and bereavement counseling many years ago. But I dropped the bereavement major when life and work became too hectic with a young child. I wanted to pick up on this thread but also be a support to those impacted by loss.

I catch up with friends as often as I can and enjoy weekends away out of Sydney. I try to get back to my country up-bringing and roots as often as I can.

I love running and do a few runs a year. In the past I lead a Run Club for a company I worked with, however I my knees are now packing it in so I have to ease off and don’t run as often.

Tennis, swimming, going to beach, bushwalking, wine tasting.

What do you dream about?

Being able to take a long extended holiday. Traveling to Tibet, my ideal house, taking my partner to Lake Louise in Canada and staying in the Fairmont Chalet there, and going on safari with my son to Africa.

Who would you invite to a dinner party (dead or alive)?

The Ultimate Guest List

Ooooh, so many possibilities, but off the cuff, I would hold it in an old Scottish castle with a big grand long table and have a medieval feast with the following people:

Robert Smith (lead singer of The Cure), Princess Diana, Adolf Hitler, The Goodies, Richard Branson, Donald Trump, Madonna Ciccone, Warren Buffet, Robert Kyosaki, Plato, His Holiness the Dalai Lama

An eclectic mix of passionate people that I think makes for interesting conversation!

What philosophies do you live by?

There are too many good books to re-read the same book twice. Hence, I don’t have a book case or hold onto books. Share them around, share the knowledge and enjoyment. Don’t glue them into your book case never to be eyeballed again. Free the books! They want to be read, not live a life sentence in the bookcase jail!

Free the books!

There are too many new and great places to explore and see to revisit the same place twice. Hence, I don’t often travel to the same place/country/travel destination twice. The countries that I limit this philosophy to are: Turkey, Ireland and….nup, can’t think of another. See as many new places as you can.

I had a friend who had been to Bali 12 times on holiday. I mean, what the? Seriously, unless she ‘running’ a ‘business’ there, if you get what I mean, (I am sure she wasn’t!) how limiting to expanding your knowledge of history, new cultures, cuisines? etc…

Good, better, best – never let it rest until you good is better and you better best. – My Dad always said this to us growing up.