Michael Sharpe, Director – East, AMGC

This time around we speak to Michael Sharpe, State Director New South Wales and Australian Capital Territory at AMGC. He tells us about the importance of bringing people together to help transform Australia’s manufacturing industry.

What is your job and who is your company?

I am the Director East of Advanced Manufacturing Growth Centre Limited (AMGC)

What’s your role and how does it fit into the business/organisation?

My role is to engage with industry and research organisations to help transform Australian manufacturing.

What does your organisation do well? What are your capabilities? Who are your ambitions?

AMGC has developed world-class research for Australia. It is the backbone of our work. The research has been picked up by state governments, too, as part of their own manufacturing strategies. The Sector Competitiveness Plan is a key document that has been distributed and shared widely. The aim is the transformation of Australian manufacturing to be more globally competitive and to create the demand for jobs.

What does your personal career path look like? Are there any highlights and/or awards along the way that you’re proud of?

I have built a career that includes Managing Director of my family’s road construction and road maintenance company, Board Member of a NSW Local Health District, various Not-For-Profits and Chairman of a leading manufacturing co-operative. My parents set a terrific example for community service, my father was awarded the Order of Australia Medal for service to the community across a variety of social welfare organisations and I have witnessed the kindness and strength of helping others.

What’s a typical day at work look like?

There is nothing better than being bringing people together. It always comes down to people, and collaboration is a key driver for advanced manufacturing. Breaking down barriers between industry and researchers is good for everyone. I have taken professors to the factory floors and industry leaders into our universities. The discussions and actions are always fruitful.

What are some tools/techniques/tactics you use to do your job as a business leader?

Communication is important, we need to share the great news that is coming out from the manufacturing sector. I have interviewed AMGC Members to share their news on the AMGC YouTube Channel, I encourage more and more people to utilise the strengths of social media platforms. The AMGC Case Studies are powerful tools that help to communicate manufacturing success and demonstrate the transformation already underway in Australian manufacturing.

Is there an issue in Australian manufacturing that’s not getting enough attention at the moment? Why is it important?

The NSW Minister for Health visited AMGC to hear about the latest with advanced manufacturing and medtech. Our members were loud and clear that the number one issue for manufacturers is access to capital. Just this month the AMGC Members event at the University of Technology Sydney brought together a range of industry people with government support programs and venture capital and private equity leaders. The presentations are being added to the AMGC website for all to share.

What do you get out of your involvement with the Australian Manufacturing Forum?

I always value keeping up with the latest news and views from across industry. The manufacturing sector is growing; it employs one in ten Australians, which makes manufacturing a significant part of the nation’s economy. Communications is important and the Australian Manufacturing Forum can help.

Are you a member of the Australian Manufacturing Forum? Would you like to tell the community about what you do through our Meet a Member series? Write [email protected] for more information.

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