Scholar Profile - Amy Coote PDF Print E-mail
Amy Coote

AMY COOTE

National Partnerships Manager at Redkite

Awarded a scholarship for University of Melbourne’s – Motivating and Managing Performance course, 2015


What sort of work does your organisation do?

Redkite is a leading national cancer charity with over 30 years’ experience providing essential support to children, teenagers and young adults with cancer (up to the age of 24) to ensure the best possible quality of life for them and their families – now and into the future. We provide financial assistance, information and counselling and education and career support. Redkite is there from the moment of diagnosis and throughout treatment to when families return home to their community. We rely on the generosity of individuals, community groups and corporate Australia to deliver our programs and we receive no government funding.

Describe a typical day's work.

In my role as National Partnerships Manager I am responsible for securing revenue and creating sustainable growth in corporate partnerships to meet short-term and long-term objectives. I assist in driving strategy and initiatives nationally and manage four Partnership Managers and six Partnership Event Specialists across the country to deliver on our financial and organisational targets.

I am also responsible for the strategy and effective management and delivery of Redkite’s national signature fundraising event, The Redkite Corporate Quiz. My goal is to drive increased revenue and engagement through the event and to leverage the event to create and nurture new long term partnerships for Redkite.

A typical day certainly varies, however regular activities are:

  • Meeting with or presenting to existing and potential partners;
  • Review and analysis of financials;
  • Planning, writing and reviewing new business proposals;
  • Managing the new business pipeline;
  • Project planning for the Quiz;
  • Ongoing management of my ten direct reports;
  • Other Redkite team meetings.

What are some of the key learnings from the Motivating and Managing Performance course?

I found the course highly rewarding, from both an educational and networking perspective.  There were a number of highly experienced managers in the room, so it was extremely beneficial to hear their stories and share practices and challenges. Some of the key learnings that I have taken away are:

  • I trust that my people have an intrinsic desire to do good work and I am a supportive communicator.
  • Non- financial rewards and recognition can be just as effective as those that are financial.
  • I can improve my management skills by placing ownership back onto my team which will result in increased empowerment and accountability

How has it impacted / changed / benefited your role and your organisation as a whole?

Participating in this course has provided reassurance that many of my approaches to team management are on the right path to ensure a highly motivated team. However, it has also identified some focus areas such as taking on additional responsibilities unnecessarily when they should be placed back to the team to manage. This is already a work in progress!

In regards to benefitting the organisation, although it has been less than a month since completing the course, I have already implemented a non-financial recognition system which can be easily applied into our day to day business practices. In my national new business meeting, I have included a ‘shout out’ section into the agenda where we can all thank and recognise our team members for their successes, contribution or support. I plan to share this concept with other National Managers who I hope will also apply this within their teams.

I am certain that in due course there will be other learnings that I will apply to my role within Redkite and also share with the rest of the team.

How did you come to be working in the not-for-profit sector?

After filling senior project management and business development roles within 5 star hotels and the professional conference and events industry for many years, and having my two beautiful children, I was looking for a change.  A wonderful opportunity to become a Senior Relationship Manager with Mission Australia presented itself and soon after I was managing Trusts and Foundations and Major Donor relationships in Victoria. It was not long before I knew that this sector was absolutely my niche and my future.

I clearly remember the first grant that I won which was $30K towards a program which helped young mothers re-engage with education, whilst teaching life and parenting skills. The feeling of securing that funding for this program was so much more satisfying than any million dollar conference I had ever acquired. I honestly felt for the first time that I was making a difference which would have long term sustainable impact on these young women and their children.

Since then, I have been fortunate enough to experience that same feeling on numerous occasions and words cannot express how rewarding it is to be making this kind of difference each day.

What do you feel is most needed to sustain and build the impact of the not-for-profit sector?

I believe that one of the key elements to sustain and build the NFP sector in Australia is education.

Education of children and young people about the impact of giving back to the community. We need to work on building the capacity of the next generation and create a passion to work in the sector. We need to invest in the future generations to ensure ongoing commitment to and sustainability of this sector.

We must also provide ongoing education and development of those already working in the sector. NFP’s should encourage participation in further education and development programs for their staff to ensure that current processes and procedures are being applied to the transparent management of the business.

In addition, we need to educate the community that you do not need to have significant funds to make a difference - Giving Circles (collective giving) is an increasingly popular way that people can engage with likeminded peers and combine their funds to have high impact. These groups also provide the donor with far greater engagement with the program or charity than a stand alone donation will allow.

What is something interesting / unique / unusual about you?

I am also very proud to be on the Advisory Board of the Melbourne Women's Fund.  Our aim is to engage Melbourne women in philanthropy which benefits our community. This will be achieved through women coming together in a “Giving Circle", to pool their financial, intellectual, professional and personal resources to benefit groups and organisations in Melbourne that are bravely dealing with issues that undermine the quality of life and futures of women and their families.


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"I clearly remember the first grant that I won which was $30K towards a program which helped young mothers re-engage with education... I honestly felt for the first time that I was making a difference which would have long term sustainable impact on these young women and their children."


ABOUT AMY:

Amy has had many years' experience in donor, trust and foundation engagement, corporate partnerships, business development, relationship management and event management. In addition, she has expertise in team management, operations, project and logistics management, budget development and financial management and marketing planning and research. This experience has been gained through her impactful positions at both Redkite and Mission Australia and over a decade of senior roles within hotels and the professional conference management industry.

Amy is also on the Advisory Board of the Melbourne Women's Fund which engages Melbourne women in philanthropy to pool their financial, intellectual, professional and personal resources to benefit organisations in Melbourne that are bravely dealing with issues that undermine the quality of life and futures of women and their families.

Amy has a true passion for philanthropy and is committed to playing a key role in this sector, now and into the future.

In early 2015, ASF awarded Amy a scholarship to attend University of Melbourne’s Motivating and Managing Performance short course.

ABOUT REDKITE:

Annual revenue / size:

Large - $5m - $25m pa

Segment of NFP sector:

Health

Operating in:

Australia-wide

Website:

http://www.redkite.org.au/