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Empowering careers, embracing risk & expanding opportunities: Takeaways from WID x Canva’s Sydney event

November 13, 2023 by Women in Digital

To coincide with this year’s SXSW conference in Sydney, Women in Digital partnered with tech powerhouse Canva to bring together an interactive event for our Sydney community. Embracing the SXSW spirit of innovation, this event centred on the theme: “The Future of Work: How to leverage technology for your career & company” discussing ground-breaking technologies, managing the new normal of modern collaboration, building a culture of innovation and powering forward towards a brighter more technologically empowered future. The conversation also expanded beyond tech to soft skills, professional identities, the value of backing yourself and how to assess company cultures. We would love to share some of our attendee’s favourite takeaways with you!

The WID x Canva Sydney Community Catchup was a morning filled with ‘magic moments’ including bottomless breakfast snacks, virgin mary mocktails, bingo networking, a DJ, a Yo-Chi bar and of course, a wow-worthy panel sharing so many nuggets of insights that our notes were overflowing thanks to:

Here are some of the audience’s top takeaways from this event:

Find your tribe:

Build yourself a community of inspiring individuals who will lift you up, share knowledge, and help you thrive in your career. You’ve heard it before and we’ll say it again: your network is your net worth. Find your support crew who will support you and your career!

Assessing your work culture:

A quick litmus test on company culture Stevie shared is to ask your people how they feel on a Sunday night about going to work on Monday. Don’t get us wrong, it’s always a little bit sad when the weekend comes to an end but if you or your team are waking up on Monday dreading the workday, well maybe it’s time to reflect on that a bit more and investigate further.


Don’t wait for someone else to recognise your talents and achievements. Advocate for yourself and own your worth! Take the initiative to nominate yourself for opportunities, awards, projects, and promotions and never allow your insecurities (or other people’s insecurities for that matter) to stop you from just going for something you want. As Emily said, “nominate yourself more, otherwise no one knows what you do well”.

Contribute to a culture of innovation:

Whether you are in a remote or hybrid work situation (or somewhere in between), make sure your meetings and engagements at work are deliberate, intentional and accessible. This is where tech comes in handy! Contribute to a culture of innovation, encouraging inclusivity and knowledge accessibility by using digital channels at work that can reach everyone. Information shared in person doesn’t always trickle down organically.

Be brave and speak up:

As Jet pointed out, you should never shy away from sharing your insights, ideas, and concerns. Your perspective is unique and valuable, and by speaking up, you contribute to the collective growth of our industry. The same rules apply if you see injustice or patronising behaviour in the workplace: Be brave. Speak up. Call it out. Find your voice and use it.

Nervous? Do it anyway:

Sometimes people need to be reminded to just go for it (and we are happy to be that support community)! Don’t hold back when opportunity knocks. Often the biggest advancements in your career come when you take that leap of faith. Trust in your abilities and embrace new challenges. As Vida encouraged, “Don’t wait for confidence, do it anyway”. We also love this comment from Ivy who said, “The only race you can’t win is the one you didn’t enter”.

Embrace a risk mindset:

To achieve successful innovation, don’t get attached to what you have achieved in the past. Look forward to a future of possibilities and opportunities in which a risk mindset is crucial to innovation. A particular quote we love by American leadership author John C. Maxwell is, “Fall early, fail often, but always fail forward” and we think it wraps up this idea of risking failure to achieve success perfectly.

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