Future Leader - Meet Vanessa Chan

Vanessa Chan

The Naked CEO Alex Malley is passionate about investing in our future leaders. He believes in nurturing and highlighting talent and inspiring young people to achieve their true potential.

Here we shine a spotlight on some of those rising stars studying at universities across the globe. 

What are their hopes? What are their career dreams? Their answers may surprise and inspire you.

Meet our next Future Leader, Vanessa Chan, a Master of Commerce (Professional Accounting & Applied Finance) student from the University of Queensland.

What makes her a Future Leader? Read on.

What is your career dream?

My career dream is to become a successful and influential person working in a challenging environment. I wish to become a role model for others, especially those who are in doubt of their abilities due to their cultural differences and educational background. I love working in a team and hope to encourage others to be brave in pursuing their goals.

How to discover your dream job. 

What is your biggest career fear?

My biggest career fear is not progressing forward in my field or being trapped in a workplace which doesn’t provide greater opportunity for growth and development.

How would you answer a question about your greatest strengths and weaknesses in a job interview?

I believe the most important aspect in a job interview is being genuine and honest, as interviewers often would like to see that rather than standard nicely planned answers.

I think my greatest strengths include being passionate and committed to everything I do.

Also I am a great team player who enjoys leading others to a common goal, although that could be one of my greatest weaknesses – being too assertive when I am trying to achieve goals in a tight timeframe.

How would you like an employer to describe you after your first interview with them?

Making a good first impression is crucial in a job interview. I would like an employer to describe me as a dedicated, enthusiastic, eager to learn and fun individual after my first interview with them.

How to make a great impression in a job interview. 

How have you built experience while you’ve been studying?

I have built experience through multiple working conditions, which have all taught me very valuable lessons.

During the summer break, I obtained an audit internship in Hong Kong, which gave me a useful and insightful real-life experience in the field, as well as a taste of working in Asia. As a CPA Australia Student Ambassador, I have had the opportunity to represent the organisation at multiple university events and I have attended valuable networking events.

I have also worked in multiple retail jobs, these roles have taught me about working in a team environment and how to be open and really listen to customer needs. While tutoring high school and university students, I have learned the importance of communication and patience.

I believe all these experiences have shaped me in to who I am today and are crucial for roles I will have in the future.


Who do you admire? / Who is your hero? Why?

Emma Watson! She is a great role model for young people. She is not afraid to speak up and has continued her education despite her fame as an actress. Unlike many other young actresses and models in the industry, Emma has used her fame to positively influence the world, speaking up for women’s rights and has not backed down from criticism.


What made you choose the course you are completing at university?

I enjoy working with numbers. I completed a QUT accounting course on top of my grade 12 studies in 2011. However, I decided to take up architecture as my bachelor degree as I was unable to do a double degree in architecture and accounting in Queensland at that time. Around second year in to my bachelor degree I realised I still favoured accounting over design. I decided to take on a Master’s degree in commerce after my bachelor degree and now I will graduate with a Bachelor and a Master’s degree!


As a five-year-old, what did you think you wanted to be when you grew up?

When I was a five-year-old, in fact up until I was in high school, I wanted to be an Olympic swimmer when I grew up. I have been a competitive swimmer since a young age and specifically chose to move to Australia for its great resources and support for competitive swimming.

Even though this dream did not come true, I believe I have learned a lot through competition and training. One of the most important things I learned was that success does not happen overnight and you have to work hard if you want to be successful.


What do you look for in a professional mentor?

I look for a professional mentor who is insightful and willing to share his or her experience with me. Someone who is relatable, open and encouraging.

Need a mentor? 6 ways to find one. 


What is the one question you would like to ask Alex?

Hi Alex, from being a suspended schoolboy to becoming a CEO, how did you deal with failures and criticisms and continue to stay focused on your goals?

Alex's response to Vanessa

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