Tique Bennett - NetCraft Australia
Member of TECR 215, Chaired by Jerry Kleeman
Adelaide, South Australia
That's something that Tique Bennett, Managing Director of South Australian IT firm NetCraft, knows all too well. NetCraft specialises in setting up and maintaining IT and telecommunications equipment across the Asia-Pacific region, and thanks to the emergence of disruptive technology such as the cloud, the business is constantly on its toes.
"We always need to stay ahead of the next wave and predict what the future is going to do," Tique explains.
"There's always that continual lookout for where we are heading, how we plan for working with the cloud and what's going to be the best model for us to assist our clients to move into the cloud. There's no resting and there's always that looking to the future to see where the IT trends are going."
It's a business approach that has evidently served Tique well when you consider her company's history. NetCraft has come a long way since Tique and her son founded a small website hosting and design operation out of their home in 1995. Since then, the business has become a full system integrator turning over revenues of $3 million.
Yet NetCraft's continued growth has not come without its challenges, one of the most important of which is managing employees in the IT sphere. In addition to the pressure of wages, Tique says it is important she is constantly providing challenging, rewarding and satisfying work for her highly technical staff.
Even with such pressure on her shoulders, Tique has always held NetCraft's role in society high on her agenda. A venture she is particularly proud of is the work her company carries out in Fiji and the Solomon Islands, where the firm helps train telecommunications staff in those areas.
It's perhaps a vital factor that contributed to her becoming a finalist in the prestigious Telstra Business Women's Awards 2013, her first personal business award. Tique is also well aware of the role TEC's mentor program played in her and her company's success.
"I've been a member of TEC for nine years and it's something that I see as having absolute value to me, personally and professionally. In fact, my turnover tripled in the time I've been in TEC," she says.
"I value the guidance from my Chair, Jerry Kleeman, and I consider him a mentor, a person who asks the hard questions when required. TEC provides an environment that allows you to do that in a way that encourages you to get a different point of view."
Such is her satisfaction with the value she receives from TEC, Tique says her first piece of advice to any struggling business operator would be to consider becoming a member.
Lastly, what does her leadership philosophy entail?
"I try to lead by example, and I think if you're not walking the talk yourself it's hard to expect other people to follow you," she begins.
"I also believe in giving people freedom and autonomy. I don't like to micro-manage people, I like to be able to give people that space to get on with it and do their job."