Network: Prospect 360

Interested in opportunities to network with other professionals? Follow the Network series where I share my experiences from the various events on in Melbourne.

In this week’s Network, I take a look at a Prospect 360 event.

First off, what is Prospect 360? For a pretty perfect summary look no further than founder Greta Donaldson’s own About,

“What I realised was that the media professionals of tomorrow needed guidance from the experts of today. And what young people were screaming out for was information from those in the know – professional insiders working in dream jobs – that cannot be taught in a text book.”

In my own words, it’s a pretty genius event where students and those looking for a career change get candid low-downs from a panel of industry insiders on the ins and outs of their professions. Here’s my high-level summary of the panel:

L-R: Sarah Willcocks (StyleMelbourne Editor/Blogger); Melissa Templeton (Myer Australia's National Public Relations Manager); and Cheryl Weir (Channel Nine's Senior Stylist)

Sarah Willcocks, Fashion Editor/Blogger of Style Melbourne whose fabulous Barbie-tribute outfit I featured here on BusinessChic during LMFF was on hand to talk about the opportunities she’s had as a blogger. Sarah shared her blogger journey to date and tips such as finding a niche and creating original content so that you stand out from the rest of the crowd 😉

Melissa Templeton, Myer Australia National Public Relations Manager, shared the demands of her role. This includes fostering relationships with various journalists and knowing how to angle one story for various appropriate publications and each of their platforms (i.e. The Age has print, online, iPad and various sections within each!); managing talent like Jennifer Hawkins and answering phone calls from the UK to comment on Jamie Oliver’s weight at 3am. As an aside- I grew up loving the TV show Absolutely Fabulous. However having met a number of people now in PR and hearing Melissa’s story – PR is an incredibly demanding job that will have you strapped to your Blackberry as hard as I know Partners in Professional Services do it.

Cheryl Weir, Channel Nine’s senior stylist, shared her progression from designer to stylist and how while it’s about who you know – for goodness sake learn all the basics so that you’ll have the requisite skills when the opportunity comes up! The role of  a stylist is also surprisingly political. You’ll need to know which starlets have contracts with which brands and which brands are sponsoring which events; it’s not just shopping for pretty dresses! Cheryl styles Channel Nine talent for the news, red carpet appearances and even costumes for the Footy Show blokes – lots of creativity required but under enormous time pressure.

L-R: The Age Fashion Editor Janice Breen Burns & Fashion Commentator Anthea O'Connor

Janice Breen Burns is The Age’s fashion editor as I photographed during  my Editor at LMFF series here on BusiChic. I’ve previously mentioned my admiration for Jan’s proficiency in print, tweeting and video content which for me re-iterates the importance of being open to new technology. Jan also talked about the importance of reading widely and wildly (a slip of the tongue but I thought it was appropriate) in order to be able to comment widely and wildly and that fashion is more than clothes you like; there’s a cultural context that needs to be included.

Anthea O’Connor, Fashion Commentator on The Circle and former Melbourne Editor of Vogue, was an impressive MC on the evening as well as sharing her own impressive protean career. I admired O’Connor’s journey from PR to fashion journalist to commenator and now with forays into television; as well as her top. Anthea did tell me where she got it from but it wasn’t a name I was familiar with and I’ve sadly managed to forget it so if anyone is able to help, please do!


This was a comprehensive evening, of which I’ve only just touched the surface. Want to hear the do’s and don’ts shared by each of the panel? Carly Jacobs has created a lovely lunch-time special of sharing her notes from each speaker at midday, every day this week. She’s written posts on Anthea, Janice and Cheryl; catch the rest here on Smaggle.

Reflecting on the evening I think about what I took away from the event. I hope that the anecdotes shared highlight to the students in the room that there is no such thing as one job for life and that a lot of getting somewhere is about who you know; so get to these networking events!

A must for anyone interested in the very many varied roles in media across sport, radio, fashion etc; check out Prospect360 for updates on future seminars to be held throughout this year and in other cities too!

Have an event I should cover? Invite me cheryl[at]businesschic[dot]com[dot]au


  1. Anthea O'Connor says

    Hi Cheryl, I am so glad you enjoyed the Prospect 360 Fashion Media forum! I agree, it is such a valuable resource, wish it was around when I was at Uni. Now my top, it is by a designer from the US called Lauren Moffat, and it is from the store Grace in Hawksburn, I sourced it for Rachel Taylor’s character “Alex” to wear in the new Working Dog movie “Any Questions for Ben?”. I was the stylist on the film who put all of “Alex’s” looks together in the movie. It is so divine I know, so when we wrapped the movie, I bought it back for me! Grace stock Lauren Moffat every season, so you will be sure to find something as gorgeous in there anytime!

    • Hi Anthea, thank you do so much for your comment! I am so honoured that you stopped by and how funny that I saw you in that top and on Rachel in the movie “Any Questions For Ben?” in the same week!

      Grace is a great boutique so I’ll be sure to stop by more often now. Hope to see you there or at a future Prospect event!

  2. Sounds like a really valuable event 🙂 I like what everyone wore to it too, interesting to see how they tailored their clothing for the audience, professional but approachable and fashionable too.

Facebook Like Box provided by technology news