Central Highlands Rural Management Challenge participants with mentor Margaret Gatt, Mayor Cr Kerry Hayes and CEO Scott Mason.
Central Highlands Rural Management Challenge participants with mentor Margaret Gatt, Mayor Cr Kerry Hayes and CEO Scott Mason. Contributed

Councils converge in Capella for management challenge

EIGHT teams from councils across the region gathered in Capella earlier this month for the Central Queensland chapter of the annual Rural Management Challenge.

The challenge, run by Local Government Managers Australia (LGMA) Queensland, is an annual development program providing real-life problem solving experiences based on situations that councils manage on a day-to-day basis.

This year's instalment was hosted by the Central Highlands Regional Council, the winners of last year's challenge.

Central Highlands had two local teams registered for the event, joining teams from Bundaberg, Isaac, Gladstone, Rockhampton and Banana councils.

One of the Central Highlands team leaders, Reannyn Murray, said it was a fantastic opportunity to work with colleagues from different council departments and towns.

"While we all work for the same council, we're from different sections and based in different communities,” she said.

"It was great to get to know my team members and learn things we didn't know about each other, but also about ourselves. It was a big commitment, and challenging at times, but I feel very privileged to have been given the opportunity to build on my leadership skills and network with council staff across the region.”

Throughout the day teams were asked to work through a number of operational tasks and scenarios as a fictitious council.

Team mentor Margaret Gatt, Central Highlands' Manager Asset Management, congratulated all of the teams on a fantastic effort.

"A lot of preparation goes into this event, with pre-challenges and team-building days,” she said.

"The atmosphere in the room on the day was so energetic and positive, with some really innovative ideas and solutions being put on the table. It's a very encouraging experience to be a part of and a chance for council staff to really develop their professional and personal skills.”

The teams will receive feedback from the judging panel next month, with the top-scoring team going onto the state title, the Australasian Management Challenge.


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