33. Empowering women to achieve - with Sonali Shah, Founder of Lean In Melbourne.

covid series job hunting managing complexity personal brand women's career Jun 09, 2020
The Job Hunting Podcast Episode 33

In this podcast, I interviewed Sonali Shah, the founder of Melbourne Lean In network, a thriving community helping women achieve their ambitions. As a Lean In Circles Regional Leader, Sonali supports a large network of women and men dedicated to gender equality. Leading a team of 17 volunteers and working alongside the Foundation and movement put in place by Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, Sonali organizes events, holds training and networking sessions, and works with the LeanIn.Org team to grow and engage the Lean In the community in Melbourne.

Sonali starts by sharing her career progression and story and the path that led her to be so passionate about supporting other women in their careers. She candidly shares her conservative upbringing and the challenges she faced to pursue her university education, move to Australia, and have a corporate career. Sonali also reflects on her personal brand of feminism and how she has embraced new values and learnings along the way and educated others to embrace diversity, women, and mothers in the workforce. Finally, we reflect on the effect of lockdown on women in the workforce and seek the silver linings. You will notice that Sonali is always looking for positive paths to change and ways to better structure work and life to support women and families. 

It is a delight to hear her story and learn from her experiences, cheer when she achieved her goals, and empathize with the roadblocks she experienced. It's an inspiring story that led her to found the Lean In network in Melbourne and her long-term passion for supporting women here and in India.

2020 is proving to be such a challenging year. Every day so much is changing, disrupting, and developing. It's tough for those whose jobs and livelihoods have been substantially affected by the pandemic and most recently by the protests happening worldwide. Job hunters are in danger of feeling isolated in their struggles and issues. I hope this podcast, and this episode, in particular, can support you in your job hunting and offer inspiration as you take the following steps in your career. 

Here's to all the silver linings in life! 

Listen to this episode - Audio link.

Links mentioned in this episode: 

Are you new to The Job Hunting Podcast? 

Hello, I’m Renata Bernarde, the Host of The Job Hunting Podcast. I’m also an executive coach, job hunting expert, and career strategist. I teach corporate, non-profit, and public professionals the steps and frameworks to help them find great jobs, change, and advance their careers with confidence and less stress. 

If you are 1) an ambitious professional who is keen to develop a robust career plan, 2) looking to find your next job or promotion, or 3) you want to keep a finger on the pulse of the job market so that when you are ready, and an opportunity arises, you can hit the ground running – then this podcast is for you. In addition to The Job Hunting Podcast, I have developed a range of courses and services for professionals in career or job transition. And, of course, I also coach private clients. 

So there is no excuse – I’m determined to help you! I want you to feel empowered, nail your next job, and have the career you want.

Enjoy the episode, and ciao for now!


Renata Bernarde | Job Hunting Expert

[email protected]


I cannot recommend it highly enough.

To my friends and colleagues who are currently job hunting, this podcast is for you. Renata Bernarde and her stellar line up of guests very generously share their perspective, advice, behind-the-scene secrets, tips, and anecdotes. "It's called The Job Hunting Podcast (it is what it says on the tin!) Guests include Anita Ziemer, Michelle Redfern, Mohit Bhargava. I cannot recommend it highly enough. Run. Don't Walk." - LinkedIn post shared by Amber Knight.

We listened, and we both got jobs!

"I am writing to let you know that I got a job. I found The Job Hunting Podcast because a friend of mine recommended it, and he also was successful in his job search. Your podcast tips and chats with guests helped me prepare for my job interview. My new position is a gateway to the organization and will allow me to grow as a professional. Thank you for the incredible work you do! We listened to your episodes and assimilated all the learnings." - Listener from New Zealand.

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