Meet Woman Fellow: Samantha Wood (Spring 22)

January 14, 2024
Stories from the Women Fellowship: Samantha Wood

We’ve caught up with some of our incredible Fellows to see what they’re up to now.

Meet Sam

Sam Wood has spent most of her career to date working operations in and around small businesses, from being the general manager of a rum bar at 23 to rolling out full ops systems and processes across Jamie Oliver's Australian restaurants, to a tech and agile scaleup sized consultancy.

Why did you apply for the fellowship?

I knew I wanted to work with startups, but I just didn't know where to start or how to apply my skillset!

How would you describe the fellowship to someone else?

It's more than just a course, it really enables you to go into the startup world backed with knowledge and even more importantly, a community of like minded people around you.

What is the value you personally got out of the fellowship?

You'll find people who don't give you that 'oh that's a bit risky/crazy' look when you talk about wanting to start a startup/syndicate/take a risk, instead you'll find the people that will encourage you and cheer you on (and probably do it with you too)!

Would you recommend the fellowship and why / why not?

Absolutely. If you're going to apply, make sure you're ready to really give the fellowship the time it deserves! This is not a program to sit in the back / just cruise along

What sort of person would you recommend it to?

Any woman looking for a bit of adventure, who feels stuck and unsure where to go, is interested in startups, or is just on the fence. It'll give you the knowledge to work out if it's right or not for you, and you'll make some great mates along the way.

What were the main things you learned from the fellowship?

The equity chat was a great one for me, and also learning about all the different stages of startups and different investment types! I had no idea it was such a complex industry beforehand.

What were some unexpected takeaways?

I think I knew this one already, but it really hit home for me during the fellowship. Women are really fucking ambitious and I think it's something not assumed or seen as much, for a number of reasons I'm sure, including our ridiculous tall poppy syndrome problem.
I love seeing an environment in which we're comfortable letting it shine. I love that I know I can talk to any woman in the Women's Fellowship, and that the conversation can quickly turn to high flying hopes and dreams before we've even gone through the linkedin exchange dance. Now that's something that should be celebrated.

Describe your journey since finishing the fellowship, professionally and personally.

I realised through the accelerator that I wanted to work with startups for the next chunk of my career. About six months post the program I found myself a job over at EnergyLab - a climate tech startup accelerator - doing operations and partnerships across all six of our programs. I bloody love it!
I've dived back into Startmate recently to do the First Believers course and am loving putting a more analytical lense on top of the sheer excitement I have for startups in general.

Pssst. Women Fellowship applications are open

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Jessica McKellarJessica McKellar

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