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Leading on the Edge: Extraordinary Stories and Leadership Insights from The World's Most Extreme Workplace by Rachael Robertson

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Chapter 15      image

A handpicked support team can be essential

At Davis Station, the ‘green store’, the big green building that served as our supply depot, was apparently in disarray. Supplies had been accumulating for decades and no one had any real idea what was inside. To my mind this was a probity issue for the AAD; obviously, unnecessary supplies were being sent. But it also worried me that it was a huge waste of money — money that was much needed to fund the science program. Back at Kingston we had negotiated an increased budget to cover a store person over summer, someone who would conduct a full inventory stocktake and organise the return of surplus requirements.

Going off half-cocked

I wasn't sure where this person was coming from, but the most likely scenario was that a 2004 winterer would be flown across from one of the other stations and would stay on at Davis for the extra few months before going home early in 2005. When my deputy, Ross, heard through the grapevine about a Mawson winterer doing the store work I wasn't surprised. But I was concerned about the timing. It would be critical that they met the ship, as a key role during resupply would be to direct pallets of supplies when the ship was unloaded. I emailed head office: ‘When is the Mawson store person coming over?’

The ship uploads and downloads emails twice a day and has a satellite phone for use in emergencies. ...

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