Ben Maguire

CEO, Australian Stockman's Hall of Fame

MBA (Executive), 2004

About Ben

Ben Maguire completed his AGSM MBA (Exec) in 2004 while working at AGL as Manager, Business Development and later as Manager, National Franchise Operations.

In 2007 Ben's lifelong passion for Australian heritage and the outback saw him quit city life to take up the unique position of CEO for celebrated Queensland museum, the Australian Stockman's Hall of Fame.

I made my career choice because ... I grew up in the bush and have a passion for Australian rural heritage. After many years of corporate work in the city, I decided I wanted to spend more time in the country. Because of this role I now have the opportunity to apply my business skills in an area I am passionate about, and it allows me to travel the country representing an iconic institution. I love the diversity of being in the Boardroom one day, and travelling through the outback the next.

If I had known then what I know now I would have .... been more prepared to back myself. When managing organisations through change, it is important to stick confidently to the plan and not let the distractions waste time and energy.

The greatest lesson of my career so far has been ... to apply situational leadership instead of a one size fits all approach. Depending on the team dynamic, the environment, or the state of the operation, applying different leadership techniques and styles can facilitate a more successful outcome for all.

My most exhilarating experience ... has been visiting the Cowboy Hall of Fame in Oklahoma and learning how the US celebrate their western heritage so well. Through the Stockman's Hall of Fame and Outback Heritage Centre, I am privileged to meet some great Australians which is also a very motivating part of the job.

My biggest unrealised wish is ... to design a sustainable business model for museums based in remote locations. Australia's national identity is preserved and celebrated by some wonderful custodians who struggle financially through limited access to markets or poor administration. I strongly believe there is a way to sustain these institutions for the long term by combining forces and sharing resources.

Others say I am ... approachable and listen, although some find it hard to connect at times. I am always working on my profile as a leader and considering how I can interact better with people.  

At the moment I am inspired by ... the clarity and leadership a Board can have when a challenge is upon us. Most stakeholders don't see the work a Board member puts in behind the scenes, though when good people step up to the task it is empowering to be part of the team.