Sadhana Smiles, who first arrived in Australia in 1983 to attend a boarding school in Melbourne, started her career as a receptionist in Chateau Melbourne.
In 2013, she was named Victorian Telstra Business Women of the Year, and was winner of the Victorian Telstra Private Corporate Sector award. Smiles, now the Chief Executive Officer of Harcourts Group, was recently named one of 100 women of influence in The Australian Financial Review and Westpac sponsored award, which she terms a “special win”, because “as a migrant it was pretty amazing to share the platform with 99 other amazing women”.
In July this year she became a joint venture partner in a property management business called Harcourts Move.
“Although I started my career in hotel management, after a year travelling in Europe I came back to Australia and got a job in real estate as a receptionist. It was here that I fell in love with the industry and over the last 27 years, worked my way up the corporate ladder,” says Smiles.
“I am a coloured woman in a male dominated industry, earning my seat at the table through my results. Numbers never lie,” says Smiles. With a smile.
A different side
I believe: Be the change you want to see in the world [Mahatma Gandhi]
What I love about Australia: It is a country that offers opportunity and embraces diversity
What I love about India: I was born in Fiji however have travelled to India many times. I love the depth of history and the vibrant busyness. India draws you in like magic and stays in your heart forever
Favourite hang-out in Melbourne: Movida because I love Spanish food and wine
A must-read: The Invisible Entrepreneur by Louise Woodbury and William de Ora
My advice to entrepreneurs: Be curious, flexible, and agile. Learn to fail, learn to have fun
Who’s Who of Melbourne’s Indian Community 2017 magazine now online! Check here.