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Matt is leading by example

Keen to take the next step in his career, Matt Watson decided to complete formal training in leadership and management. But he never imagined the unexpected benefits the qualification would bring to both his personal and professional life.

"I've been with the same company for about 10 years and I was looking to step up within the business. I've always seen myself as a leader at work so I wanted some formal training on that," Matt said.

Right from the start, Matt could see that his training would have an impact on his personal life as well.

"I also thought it would be an inspiration to my kids because they're doing their study at the moment so I wanted to spend some time with them doing some homework and be an inspiration to them," he said.

But when it came to finding a course, Matt needed something that would fit around his work schedule and family commitments.

"I looked at doing an accelerated diploma but I start work at 3am so I had to find something that fit in — I didn't have time to get to the classes because my wife works nights so between juggling her work commitments and the kids, I decided studying online was the way to go," Matt said.

For Matt, expanding on and adding to his professional skill set is something he's always been passionate about.

"I'm very interested in learning leadership with TAFE Queensland because I believe education is lifelong. I've always studied something — even after this course I intend to continue on into business administration as it was recommended by one of my teachers. I can't see myself ever stopping studying, I'll always find something to challenge myself," he said.

Matt not only found studying online a great way to fit his studies around his other commitments, but he also enjoyed having all his learning materials at his fingertips.

"With TAFE Queensland you use Connect to access your course materials. It's super easy to use, very user-friendly, and it's really easy to connect and communicate with your teachers.".

Despite studying online, Matt received all the help and support he needed from his teachers throughout his study journey.

"Every question I ever asked they got back to me — they were super supportive. They're really good at directing you to exactly where the information is in your subject materials, and if you still have trouble then they explain it to you further. I really couldn't ask for anything more from them to be honest, they've just helped me so much on my journey," he continued.

Reflecting on what he's learned in the Certificate IV in Leadership and Management (BSB40520) so far, it's clear that Matt has gained plenty of skills from the course already.

"Some of the skills I've learnt at TAFE Queensland include interpersonal communication, business planning, scheduling — I know so much more about what's expected of the role of the worker and then how to communicate that back up the chain with management. It's changed the way I actually think about how I go to work, what's expected of me and what I can do for my fellow workers," he said.

And while he's yet to finalise his studies, Matt hasn't let that stop him from putting what he's learnt into practice already.

"I haven't changed my role yet, but the way I go about my role has improved. I hope to move up in the company with my qualification — it's definitely opened some doors for me that I've just got to walk through," he said.

Now that he's started on his leadership journey, Matt plans on using his newly-developed skills well into the future.

"I don't just hope to be a leader in my company, I hope to branch out and become a leader within the industry," he said.

But for Matt, one of the most surprising aspects of his time at TAFE Queensland has been the change his studies have made to his personal life.

"What I've learnt from TAFE Queensland is mainly just how to become a better father — management just leads into becoming a better father and a better person. Some of the things I never thought I'd be able to achieve personally as well as professionally — I can't believe the changes that TAFE Queensland has made."

Watch Matt's story