The Dream Collective Career Summit 2015




The Dream Collective aims to inspire, provide guidance and empower individuals with effective tools and strategies to equip you to go out and achieve both your career and personal goals.

Whatever your goals or aspirations, whether you are currently stuck in a career rut, losing the passion for your work or simply seeking  fresh, innovative ways to tackle your next big goal, project or career move, be inspired by the entrepreneurial spirit, motivated minds and cultivated wisdom from an incredibly talented selection of influential individuals at The 2015 Inaugural Dream Collective Career Summit.

While traditionally The Dream Collective focuses on those working in business, the outstanding speaker lineup allows this event to transcend well beyond the corporate world. From a TedX speaker, digital education specialist, to an innovation judge, business executives, a best selling author and a national sporting hero, this event is for anyone driven and ambitious to achieve whatever they set their mind to, in whatever career path, industry or field they are in.

This half-day workshop features a series of short TED style presentations in addition to an interactive panel session, allowing the audience an invaluable opportunity to ask questions and receive personalised advice from top business leaders and influential speakers on the day. This will be followed by an engaging network opportunity to meet the speakers as well as like-minded motivated individuals.

Meet with fellow aspiring future leaders and gain invaluable advice and insight into the knowledge of highly regarded influential leaders and successful individuals from various industries and career paths with the full line of speaker including:

  • Will Dayble – TedX Speaker, Founder of Fitzroy Academy of Getting Sh-t Done
  •  Sally Collins – General Manager Business Banking at NAB, Author of Stepmother Love and Top 10 Women to Watch in Banking and Finance
  • Loretta Hudson – Oceania Partner at Ernst & Young Australia
  • Kate Weiss – Founder of Table of Plenty, Telstra National Business Women’s Award Winner
  • Dr. Sarah Dods – Executive Manager, Strategy, Performance and Futures at CSIRO
  • Kris Howard – All Rounder at Canva (One of Australian startup scene’s biggest success stories)
  • Mike Rolls – Australia representative at World Disabled Golf Championship and Expert on Proactive Resilience
  • Nicole Fowkes – Director of Human Resources, GHD
  • Sarah Liu – Founder of The Dream Collective, Co-founder of Gemini3 and 2014 International Stevie Award Winner of Young Female Entrepreneur of the Year
  • Caroline O’Farrell – Centre for Workplace Leadership

I have personally attended a workshop previously with The Dream Collective and can attest to the certainty that it will be an incredibly insightful, inspiring, empowering and thought provoking session.

Event Details:

Time: 10am – 2pm

Date: Saturday, 24th October

Venue: The Arena, NAB Village, Docklands

For more information and to purchase tickets for this Saturday 24th October, click on the following link:

Special Discounted ‘Buy-One-Get-One-Free’ ticket offer:

Register to updates from The Dream Collective at the bottom of the webpage below to receive a ‘Buy-One-Get-One-Free’ ticket offer for all subscribers:

Disclaimer: Melbourne Darling was invited to attend The Dream Collective Career Summit as a guest. The opinions shared in this article are based completely on my own honest and personal views, thoughts and experiences.

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Little Girl Big Dream Masterclass

Little Girl Big Dream was developed three years ago by  Sarah Liu as a platform to connect and develop professional young women through their Dream Collective membership program consisting of a range of leadership training, professional development events, conferences and mentoring sessions with a focus on marketing, entrepreneurship and corporate leadership.

Melbourne Darling featured a ‘Spotlight On’ article on Sarah Liu for her dedication to encourage and motivate young business women to dream big and take action to follow and fulfil them.

Last weekend I was fortunate enough to attend the Little Girl Big Dream Melbourne Master Class. The Master Class was a half day workshop focusing on professional development, networking and mentoring, facilitated by two very special guest speakers, industry experts Alexie O’Brien, former General Manager of Lululemon Athletics Australia and New Zealand and Juliana Nguyen, Marketing Director of Nike Pacific. I found the Master Class to be a stand out because the group was limited to a small number which allowed for attendees to meet and listen to two prominent, experienced and extremely knowledgeable business women in an intimate and comfortable setting for personalised attention. Despite differences across everyone’s individual work-life situations, career points and industries, the Master Class encouraged in-depth discussions for sharing career and work challenges and receiving thoughtful advice and guidance in return.

Little Girl Big Dream Melbourne Master Class

Little Girl Big Dream Melbourne Master Class

I sincerely respected the two special guest speakers for having the honesty and openness to strip back their stories and share personal recounts of their lives and their own personal successes and challenges. It was very humbling to hear how they began, who influenced them along the way and essentially how their values allowed them to find direction in their dreams and set out to achieve their career success.

Not only was I inspired by Sarah Liu, Juliana and Alexie but also the group of women that attended the Master Class were all so inspiring in their own way. It was wonderful to meet and be surrounded by so many talented individuals. The Little Girl Big Dream Master Class provided invaluable advice and career guidance, newfound inspiration and the opportunity to get to know and connect with a group of remarkable young women.

Little Girl Big Dream is an excellent source for young professional women seeking guidance, mentoring, inspiration or networking opportunities. For more information on Little Girl Big Dream, the Dream Collective Membership program and upcoming events visit


Disclaimer: Melbourne Darling was invited to attend the Little Girl Big Dream Melbourne Master Class as a guest. The opinions shared in this article are based completely on my own honest and personal views, thoughts and experiences.

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Spotlight On: Sarah Liu – Little Girl Big Dream, Founder and Director

Sarah Liu

Sarah Liu

Melbourne Darling is shining a ‘Spotlight On’* Sarah Liu for her dedication to not only inspire, but encourage and motivate young business women to dream big and take action to follow their dreams.

Sarah Liu is the founder and director of Little Girl Big Dream, a community offering networking and professional development events and programs designed to empower, support and develop young professional women into becoming the next generation of professional leaders. Sarah Liu has also published a book called ‘500 Words of Wisdom’ a collection of candid reflections and encouraging words of advice from a selection of Australia’s most successful female business leaders, including Pip Marlow, MD of Microsoft, Kate Burleigh, MD of Intel, Catriona Noble, CEO of McDonalds, Kristina Karlsson, Founder & Creative Director Kikki K, Maryanne Shearer, Founder of T2, Janine Allis, Founder and Managing Director of Boost Juice and Lorna Jane Clarkson, just to name a few.

I have read a number of books featuring collections of interviews or profiles on female entrepreneurs and business women but I found that ‘500 Words of Wisdom’ was a real standout. It is such a beautifully presented, uplifting read where each of the women featured came across as though they could express themselves freely and contribute what they believed to be most important and most worthy of sharing.

Instead of being a collection of interviews of successful women recounting a typical day in their lives or how they struck lucky, what I really found of value in the book was the genuine and heart felt responses that the women shared. The book read in an open and thoughtful way as though the women were passing on their words of advice to their own daughters or their sisters. I think this greatly captured the sense of sisterhood  that I admire and that I believe  the Little Girl, Big Dream association and its supporters (namely the high profile female business leader contributors of this book) strive to achieve.

You can purchase a copy of ‘500 Words of Wisdom‘ via the Little Girl Big Dream website, or at T2 stores and Kikki K stores nationally.

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In addition to this exciting read, Sarah has also just launched the Little Girl Big Dream Membership program – The Dream Collective. Specifically designed to support young and ambitious, professional women in Australia, The Dream Collective membership allows individuals access to valuable learning, development and network opportunities designed to assist individuals to achieve career advancement and the steps to fulfill their aspirations of leadership roles. The Dream Collective membership includes access to the upcoming Little Girl Big Dream Think Tank Series, exclusive business and career coaching with high profile female business leaders. Starting from just $1 a day, see the Little Girl Big Dream website for more information on membership options and inclusions.

Before Sarah embarks on what is to be a very busy and exciting year ahead for Little Girl Big Dream, I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to ask Sarah some questions about her own journey and words of wisdom for young women chasing their dreams:

What inspired you to start up the Little Girl Big Dream?

 I have always been passionate and ambitious, always searching for opportunities to develop and grow professionally as soon as I entered the corporate world. However,I was confronted by the lack of resources and support networks available to young professional women. That’s when I decided to take it upon myself to create such platforms and founded Little Girl Big Dream, a community where like minded young women can connect in a professional forum and be empowered and equipped to pursue our dreams. Where we can support, encourage and collaborate to achieve success and where we can be mentored and guided by high calibre leaders in Australia to realise our potential.

Did you always aspire to be a successful leader in Business or was it something that became of interest later in life?

I have always had a clear vision and aspiration to be a career woman – no matter what industry or sector it may be. I knew I wanted to be in a position of leadership and wanted to develop professional excellence and achieve career success.

My interest in Business was developed later as I gained more experience and exposure in the corporate world. I have a Marketing and Branding background and it has been pivotal in informing and influencing the direction of my career thus far.

Who have been your personal and/or professional mentors along the way?

Oh where do I start?! Too many of them! I have had formal mentors as well as informal mentors whose generous sharing and guidance have shaped the way I think. In addition, learning about the work they do has inspired and motivated me to stay determined in achieving what I am passionate about. These have included all speakers, contributors to our program, in particular Ghazaleh Lyari (Founder of Ghermez Cupcakes), Catriona Watson Lamb (Marketing Director, Bendon Lingerie) and Megan Dalla Camina (former Director of Strategy at IBM and author of Getting Real About Having It All) just to name a few.

Having said that, there’s one mentor who played a pivotal role in helping me navigate the way through my career and business and that’s my boyfriend Glen. Successful in his own right, he never seizes to inspire and open my eyes and thinking to new realms. He not only provides practical guidance, experience, sharing and know-how to the challenges I face, but most importantly, he always challenges me to stretch beyond my comfort zone, to dream the audacious and to achieve the unthinkable. One thing Sheryl Sandberg said in her book “Lean In” was that the best career decision a girl can ever make is the partner she chooses – and I honestly cannot agree more with that.

Can you share a hardship or challenge you faced and were able to overcome during your career?

The reality is that challenges are never ending.  The one day I don’t see a challenge ahead is the day I tell myself to step up the game. Many people see challenge and hardship as difficulties to get through, but I would encourage everyone to view it as an opportunity to grow and stretch beyond your comfort zone.

I run into road blocks that most people would also face, including limited resources to grow my business quickly as an entrepreneur, or having to deal with terrible bosses who put me through hell on earth. I have learnt that the only way forward is to calm down, rationalise the situation/problem at hand and decide whether it is a battle worth fighting, because sometimes it actually isn’t!

Life is too short, so focus your energy on what’s worth fighting for! Once this issue is decided on, believe in your decision and tackle the problem head on, but don’t get overly emotional. My advice is to see every challenge as an opportunity to grow. I know it sounds easier said than done, but trust me, it will make the journey so much easier and that’s the only way you will be able to come out of it stronger than ever.

What are your words of wisdom for the young women who aspire to become the future generation of female business leaders?

Believe in the power of your dreams! This really isn’t as cliche as it may sound. Successful people start on their venture and journey because first they had a dream. A dream of who they want to be, what they want to achieve, where they want to be and why they want to do it. Have a dream and make sure you commit to realising it too. Last but not least, giving up will always look like the best option because negativity requires no effort.  Remember that, and that success is sheer hard work repeated day in and day out!

What has been the most memorable piece of advice or words of wisdom given to you?

“Go that extra mile – because it’s never crowded” – The road to career or business success is often a lonely and difficult journey but if you don’t challenge and stretch yourself to go that extra mile, you may never experience what that opportunity truly has to offer.

Where are your favourite places to go as a Melbourne Darling?

My favourite places in Melbourne would have to be Laurent Boulangerie Patisserie on Little Collins Street, Brother Baba Budan on Little Bourke Street, Nobu at Crown Southbank and Izakaya Den on Russell Street!

Sarah Liu

Sarah Liu

*The ‘Muse of the Month’ feature has been renamed as the ‘Spotlight On’ feature

Disclaimer: Melbourne Darling received a reading copy of 500 Words of Wisdom for review purposes. The opinions shared in this article are based completely on my own honest and personal views, thoughts and experiences.

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