Developing the skills and network to try different career opportunities
An appetite to try new things has set Dallan Cape-Murphy on a diverse career path.
Now working in the higher education sector since graduating from Monash University with a Bachelor of Commerce eight years ago, Dallan has applied himself to a foundation role with a top tier accounting firm, and has launched and run his own business.
His current role at Swinburne University involves working closely with government, industry and university partners to deliver innovative solutions for all stakeholders.
“It is a fast-paced environment with many great learning opportunities. The team and I are constantly looking for the most efficient way to deliver commercially viable outcomes for students and industry partners alike,” Dallan says.
A diverse early career
Dallan secured a graduate role as a Tax Adviser at KPMG after completing a summer internship placement in 2012.
“The Big Four accounting firms have plenty of Monash alumni who are equally hungry for career success, and (they played) an important (role) in my early career,” Dallan says.
After gaining valuable experience with KPMG, he felt confident enough to launch his own business.
“After I had developed some systematic accounting skills I decided to put my business skills to the test and start my own event management, party hire company,” he says.
“There were many lessons learned about necessary research before starting your own business, but all of those challenges provided me with an entrepreneurial mindset for self improvement.”
“During the time I was running my own business, I worked part-time at Treasury Wine Estates in the call centre, and eventually worked my way into a manager position, (plus going out) on the road doing business development.
“After almost four years of improving my negotiation and stakeholder management skills, I decided to try and make more of a difference in the world by working for a University, and that's when I returned to Monash University.
“The next part of my journey has (now) begun at Swinburne University, where I work in government, industry and university partners to deliver innovative solutions. I love making a difference.”
Value of an alumni network
Dallan says his strong alumni network has backed and driven him along every step of his career journey to date.
“I’ve been really lucky to have such a great alumni network, who have really encouraged me to keep chasing the next challenge and opportunity in my career,” he says.
“In particular, the Alumni to Alumni Mentoring program at Monash University offers a great place to seek advice from alumni in a whole range of varying fields and levels of experience.”
International opportunities and reputation: Why he chose Monash
Dallan says Monash Business School was his first pick for his undergraduate degree.
“I was thrilled to be offered a position to study a Bachelor of Commerce at Monash Business School. The school’s reputation and opportunity to meet other ambitious people who would help me grow personally and professionally was definitely a driving factor in (the school as) my first preference,” he says.
“The opportunity to travel abroad to Leeds University was an incredible experience that also helped me develop greater independence and appreciation for the value of cross-cultural learning.”
“The teachers within this program (constituted) a foundational building block that has set me up for the rest of my career — thank you Monash Business School for providing me with this experience!”
How Monash societies and programs build job-ready skills
Dallan was president of the Monash Business and Commerce Student Society (BCSS) during his studies, and also participated in the Peer Ambassador Leadership (PAL) Program.
“Some of my best memories of University life were focused heavily around the BCSS,” Dallan says.
“Having the opportunity to be President of the BCSS provided real world experience of managing a team and surrounding yourself with a diverse range of really impressive people.
“(Participating) in the Peer Ambassadors Leadership (PAL) program which also helped me to appreciate the importance of good leadership qualities and the impact that can make personally and professionally in your life.”
Dallan’s top tips for current, future and international students
- Get involved in the extra-curricular activities (jobs, student societies, mentoring programs, exchange programs etc).
- Make the time to build strong connections within your cohort (it’s a two way equation; give and take).
- Utilise Monash Business School’s great academics and resources; ask valuable questions and seek advice from them while you have this access.