QACI Leaves Lasting Impression on International Business Guru

On Wednesday 19th March, International Leadership and Management expert Paul Bridle visited QACI to talk with business students about leadership. The first part of the following is written by Amelia Walters and Bonnie Kirkpatrick, two of the Student Directors who toured Mr Bridle through the campus before he took to the stage in the theatre for a special Lunchtime Lecture.

Mr Paul Bridle’s Speech on Leadership and how we can apply this to our experiences at QACI:

After being informed that I would be touring Paul Bridle along with the other Student Directors, naturally I Googled his name. The wealth of information was almost overwhelming, particularly when reading through the testimonies to his work. Many of these were written by high-ranking businessmen and women or world renowned CEO’s. To say that I was slightly intimidated when meeting the man himself would be an understatement, however Mr Bridle made us all feel at ease. He was genuinely interested in the unique culture we have at QACI and we were more than happy to show him everything that makes up our environment. After finishing his tour, Mr Bridle took the time to speak to the students, to pass on his wisdom. Reflecting on what he said two things stand out clearly in my mind, the notions “it is not a leader’s job to motivate people”, and “everyone can be a leader”.

I discussed the idea of motivating others with fellow students and QACI leaders. A leader can inspire people, but they cannot motivate others. It is the responsibility of the individual to find what motivates them and work towards it. You can only motivate yourself. To maintain an inspirational environment that we look forward to coming to each and every day, we are all responsible for making the choice every morning before walking through QACI’s doors to be motivated, to set goals, to be energised. It is important to remember that whilst we can inspire people, we can also de-motivate them. If we all commit to being motivated QACI and its students will only continue to move from strength to strength.

The second idea that we are all capable of being leaders, is just as important. Leaders are not only the people who are confident to stand up in front of large crowds and speek. Anyone can be a leader, anyone can inspire, challenge and guide those around them. Everyone can be a leader because we all have different skills, talents and areas of expertise.

Mr Bridle reflected on what inspired him throughout his life;  ‘If’ a philosophical poem about life by Rudyard Kipling and a quote about happiness.

‘Happiness isn’t what you get from life, its what you bring to it.‘

This quote is simple, yet so true. It’s your responsibility to determine your own happiness and reality. No one else but you. You are the creator of your own life. So find your inner motivation, be inspired by the people and environment around you and make happiness a priority and your reality.

Lasting Impressions

A week later and the student directors had been given the feedback that there were three things that really stood out for Mr Bridle on his visit.   He said:

“I had expected to be impressed, but was in fact so blown away by my experience with QACI, that I took nearly the whole afternoon to process it.   But the things that most moved me where the way the students were so passionate about their school, the facilities were extraordinary, especially for a public school, and the way the kids talked about their Principal and the obvious respect they had for him.“

Mr Bridle was also particularly impressed by each Student Directors’ ability to articulate their seven pillars of leadership and what these meant to them, their school, and their own roles as young leaders within the school.  He said “I’d like to send all the high ranking business people I have to meet with while I’m here in Australia this week to hear what these kids had to say about leadership”.

At assembly the week after Mr Bridle’s visit, the student leaders put their impressive learning from him to good use and encouraged students to all take on the responsibility of self motivation, especially in the context of upcoming exams and daily challenges.

We highly recommend that you take a minute to review the Q&A Session video and the Student Directors’ own translation of the lessons learned HERE. (

QACI students are very proud of the fact that such a high ranking international management and leadership expert took time to visit our Academy and was impressed enough to want to come back next year when he returns to Australia, and to talk about QACI to other leaders he is set to inspire this year.