Driftwood Group

From Backpacker to Business Owner

20 years ago this month, I arrived in Australia as a Backpacker, just one week after graduating from a Human Resources Degree in Dublin.

As you can imagine I was excited about starting my work career but also super excited about spending a year doing lots of travel, including some crazy glacier moments in NZ and one particularly hair-raising parachute jump…NEVER AGAIN!

I was so lucky to get my first job at Morgan and Banks, Melbourne working in Recruitment. That was the springboard to my whole career, fantastic training, mentors and colleagues meant failure was next to impossible. The experience of being self sufficient in a country so far from home was one I would recommend to anyone. You grow up so fast and learn to be independent.

Getting some great breaks long the way (luck is a fab thing), helped me set up and run KISS Recruitment for 10 years. At one point I even took over the sponsorship of myself to remain doing what I loved, where I loved doing it.

More recently I co-founded Driftwood Group, but from that first flight out to OZ, I’ve never really looked back. And I’ve not lost sight of how much the travel changed who I was. Even though I love to return to Ireland every chance I get, Australia is now firmly embedded as my home.

This year I was chosen to be one of the Irish Australian Chamber of Commerce Emerald Kin and have met so many successful Irish women living in Australia. The recent Irish Business Awards highlighted many of them, and other wonderful Irish people who have achieved amazing success in these sunny shores.

I am so glad that Australia embraced and welcomed me and am enjoying celebrating this 20 year milestone…bring on the next 20!

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Yvonne Kelly

Yvonne Kelly

Yvonne is a Founder of Driftwood Group | Connector of Humans | Mistress of Mentoring | Transformer of Lives