Kapooka VIP Challenge - Mar 2017

Senior Executives Tackle Defence VIP Challenge

Participating in the Defence Reserves Support VIP Challenge has provided 14 senior executives from throughout Australia with a first-hand taste of life in the Australian Defence Force (ADF) Reserves.

The group of leading business people, senior public servants and community sector professionals gained a unique insight into military life during the Challenge, held last month at Blamey Barracks Kapooka in New South Wales.

The aim of the two day annual Challenge is to provide employers the opportunity to observe and experience the personal, technical and professional skills training Reservists receive as a member of the Navy, Army or Air Force Reserve.

Activities included leadership and survival skills training as well as team building exercises and physical challenges.

For Johnson & Johnson Australia Medical Director Glen Mason participating in the challenge "opened his eyes" to the skills Reservists developed in a military environment.

"The VIP Challenge was an opportunity to gain a rare insight into what Reservists do, the training they undertake, and the benefits they can bring to an organisation," Dr Mason said.

"We marched as a team, overcame our fears with high ropes courses and abseiling.

"On the last day we were able to showcase our weaponry skills, and we also attended a recruit 'march out' parade. The level of training and rehearsals that would have been required for the parade alone was astounding in itself. It's no wonder it is such an important occasion for the recruits and their family and friends."

Dr Mason said Johnson & Johnson Australia was investigating opportunities to become an employer of choice and introduce flexible work practices for ADF Reservists.

"The Challenge emphasised just how valuable it is to not only have Reservists within organisations, but also how important they are to our country generally - so as a nation we can meet military commitments. It is imperative that we have supportive employers," Dr Mason said.

"Due to the nature of their training, Reservists bring with them high levels of discipline, motivation, leadership, problem solving and teamwork skills.

"After having the opportunity to also speak with some of the Reservists, I have no doubt that by allowing employees to combine their civilian and defence responsibilities, increases employee engagement levels."

Deputy Head Reserve and Youth Division Air Commodore Andrew Elfverson took part in the VIP Challenge and paid tribute to other participants.

"The VIP Challenge is an activity that exposes civilian senior level managers and employers to the training and military activities that their Reservist employees undertake when on Defence service,"AIRCDRE Elfverson said.

"The fact that these busy people have taken time off from their civilian employment demonstrates their commitment to supporting Reservist employees."

AIRCDRE Elfverson said there was no doubt Australian business and industry stood to gain from employing and supporting Defence Reserves.

"Reserves acquire a wide range of skills, qualities and experience through their Defence training. These are qualities they take back to the workplace," AIRCDRE Elfverson said.

"Anyone who employs a Defence Reservist has a valuable member on their team. They have an employee whose training and service ethic drives performance and effectiveness in the workplace," he said.

Johnson & Johnson Australia Medical Director Mr Glen Mason ready to abseil
Johnson & Johnson Australia Medical Director Mr Glen Mason ready to abseil as part of the Kapooka VIP Challenge activity that was held at Blamey Barracks Kapooka recently.

Produced by Defence Public Affairs Office


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Last update: Monday, 16 October 2017

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