The pathway to leadership at Transurban

October 14, 2021

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Transurban offers lots of opportunities to grow, learn and build your career, and Jessica Georgeski has done it all while also raising a family. She’s had a great career so far and isn’t planning on stopping anytime soon. Now she is the WestConnex Commercial and Planning Lead.

The pathway to leadership at Transurban

Jessica is a professional problem solver, having used her skills and experience as a civil engineer and project manager to manage and provide advice on infrastructure projects in Australia and internationally.

After 10 years working in consultancy, Jessica was looking for a company that could provide a new challenge. She was also ready to settle back in Sydney, after time spent on projects in Dubai and in the Pilbara in Western Australia. 

Transurban appealed for many reasons.

“It’s more than just a toll road operator,” Jessica explains. “At Transurban, we actively seek out ways to innovate in the way we operate, our network is extensive, and we really are genuine about strengthening communities through transport.” 

Jessica joined Transurban in operations and maintenance as a Works Program Delivery Manager. She was focused on Sydney’s Lane Cove Tunnel and the Hills M2 motorway. 

“That was a new experience for me because I had come from the construction side of our industry. And it was my first foray into the operations and maintenance space.”

“There was so much to learn – and my colleagues and managers were always available to answer my questions.”

After a couple of years in the role, Jessica was asked to be a key member of the Sydney Transport Partners transaction team for the initial WestConnex sale. 

It was during this time that Jessica stepped away from the business while she had her first child. On her return, she was appointed the Commercial Manager, Integration and Commercial for WestConnex and earlier this year, was promoted to WestConnex Commercial and Planning Lead.

“At Transurban everyone is actively encouraged to move around the business and seek out new opportunities. The more you do that, the more value you will bring to your role.”

A focus on diversity

When she was initially contacted by Transurban with an opportunity, Jessica was struck by the senior woman interviewing her, and her passion for diversity and inclusion. 

“It’s ingrained in the culture, because we all understand the benefits diversity brings to the team.”

“In other companies I have worked, I was often the only woman in a meeting. At Transurban, I look around and I see female engineers and IT managers; and at the executive level, the gender split is 50:50.”

“That was both exciting and refreshing, and something I continue to appreciate about Transurban.”

When first returning from parental leave, Jessica knew the operations role she had being doing previously, wouldn’t be possible to do on a part time basis. So, Transurban worked with her to create a part time role in the WestConnex team that interested her, and which would progress her career. 

“My manager was very supportive.  We worked together to create a role which suited my preferred working days and the direction I wanted to take my career, both of which have evolved since first returning to work,” 

“Now I’m back to full time work –working flexibly.”

“When we’re not in lockdown, I work from home a couple of days a week. It’s certainly a very accommodating flexible working arrangement.”

Career tips for ambitious women 

Jessica has built a rewarding career, and we asked her for her tips for making it work. She shared: 

  1. Believe in yourself. “It sounds so cheesy, but if you don’t then you can’t expect others to. If you want it, back yourself and put your hand up.”
  2. Focus on family. “In terms of juggling work and family life, equality matters as much at home as it does in the workplace. Those that juggle well, tend to have really clear arrangements with their support network at home.” 
  3. Be yourself. “Be yourself and don’t stick around doing something that’s not right for you. The job has got to suit you as much as you have to suit the role. If you find a role that’s really you and you enjoy it, then work isn’t hard.” 

“We are not just an engineering company; I work with technical experts, IT specialists, as well as our finance, legal and public affairs teams.”

It’s a collaborative environment where broad experience is valued, with a focus on innovation and continuous improvement, Jessica is excited about the future.

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About the Author
Samantha Sutherland is the Chief Storyteller at WORK180. She is a Diversity and Inclusion specialist with an analytical background, making her work evidence-based and data driven. Host of WORK180’s Equality Talks podcast and her own Women at Work, Samantha divides her time between interviewing amazing women for WORK180, mentoring and coaching women in, or aspiring to, leadership roles, and providing high-level advice on diversity practices to Australian corporations. You can learn more about the Samantha Sutherland consultancy at samanthasutherland.com.au.

Looking for a new opportunity?

Our transparent job board only has vacancies from employers we endorse and lets you see what benefits, policies and perks come with the job. Check out the latest job vacancies with Transurban