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MEDIA RELEASE 31 October 2015

New initiative working to inform and inspire Australia’s future leaders

A new book and essay competition is aiming to reinvent what it means to be a leader in Australia and inspire our next generation of leaders.

So you want to be a leader is the brainchild of former technology and IP lawyer Philip Crisp. It brings together advice from 37 successful Australian leaders, from a range of professions and walks of life.

Mr Crisp said he wanted to draw on the wealth of experience within the cohort and share this knowledge with the next generation.

“Amidst Australia’s sometimes toxic political culture, the knowledge and experience of our leaders can become lost,” Mr Crisp said.

“I decided that I wanted to take a positive step towards ensuring our young leaders don’t become too dismayed and help them to avoid some of the pitfalls experienced by those before them.”

Mr Crisp has compiled a book with the advice he was given. The next step is an essay competition which calls on young leaders to respond to the advice and articulate their ideas on leadership and approaching the challenges of public life.

His initiative has the backing of some of Australia’s experts in engaging with young people and leadership.

“Young people are already showing us what it means to be a leader through their inspiring work to tackle some of Australia’s biggest challenges,” said Jan Owen AM, CEO of the Foundation for Young Australians.

“Every day I get the privilege of speaking to and working with young people who are tackling climate change, unemployment, poverty, how we can best prepare ourselves for the economy of the future and so much more.

“Initiatives like So you want to be a leader create an important platform for young people to articulate and share their vision for Australia’s future.”

“Public life is a great privilege but also presents many challenges. Advice from this cohort of inspiring and well informed leaders is a great wealth of knowledge that should be accessed by all young people aiming to build their own future in public life,” said former Liberal Leader John Hewson AM.

It is vital that we not only build this wealth of knowledge, but also use it to inspire our future leaders so we can best ensure Australia’s future.”

So you want to be a leader is available for purchase now. For more information, including details of the essay competition, please visit or contact Philip Crisp 0418 621 883