Women In Media Profile: Karen Halligan

Women In Media Profile: Karen Halligan

The Women in Media Awards are back for 2018! To celebrate this wonderful fact, and to recognise some of the killer women in our industry, we’ve created a women in media series – and have profiled some pretty inspiring women so far.

Last week we spoke to Alison Michalk from Quiip, and now it’s time for you to meet the inspiring Karen Halligan from KPMG!

What was the best advice you were ever given?

I have been fortunate to have received a few killer pieces of advice.

One of the the first was given to me very early on, when Pam Lane told me “don’t do the job you are in – do the one you want. If you make yourself redundant in the old role and fundamental to the next role, you will get that opportunity.”

Another gem has that’s stuck with me: “people leave bosses not jobs”, something that has made me think really hard about type of leader I want to be.

What women do you find inspiring?

I find a lot of women inspiring for multiple reasons.

I was a very lucky woman to have had a working role model in my mother. When I was growing up she was one of the few mums that worked full time and also travelled. At the time I felt a bit ripped off, but I have come to realise it was a fundamental part of building my resilience.

Outside of mum, and maybe because of her, I have huge respect for trailblazers, women who take on challenges in areas that are new frontiers.

If I have to name individuals, on the high profile front I would name Sandra Sandberg – not because of her work on Lean In, but more on her approach to resilience post the impromptu death of her husband.

I have also been lucky to have had a great female mentor in Anne Parsons, an ex-agency exec who despite living overseas always seems to find time for me.

What’s changed in your role since you started?

This is a tough question to answer as I never like to stand still. So much has changed since I started in media.

Recently, after many years in media agencies, client and media owner roles, I have moved into the management consulting space at KPMG. What has been interesting is how different it is from what I expected. It is incredibly exciting to be surrounded by people with such a diverse set of skills. Here I have the ability to identify and leverage a broad range of experts and that is quite inspiring.

I feel as though I have learnt more here in four months than I did over the last few years.

What’s your proudest professional moment?

It’s hard to answer with one moment as there have been so many great moments over the years, but the one thing I am seriously grateful for is the privilege to have been able to mentor and help develop people.

There are a number of people that I have spent a lot of time with (some for a few years). To see them moving into senior roles, and to have been able to play a small part supporting their professional journey, makes me me very proud.

What’s the most exciting thing about women working in senior leadership roles?

The most exciting thing about seeing more senior women in leadership roles is we see that it can be done – that we can address the imbalance within our industry.

When young women see the real-life inspiration of female leaders succeeding, it show them what their future can hold.

What’s the hardest lesson you’ve learnt in or out of the workforce?

Sometimes life isn’t fair. Don’t fight it, just accept it and move on.

What advice would you give to young aspiring women?

Surround yourself with positive and motivated people.

Naysayers and negativity makes you the same, it is better to believe anything is possible and hunt it down, no-one hands you anything, the good stuff needs to be earned and that means working hard.

Why are women vital to your industry?

Women are vital to every industry. Only through a balanced workplace at every level and industry can we create true equality.

B&T‘s Women in Media Awards 2018 will be held on Friday 17 August 2018 at Doltone House – Jones Bay Wharf. Grab early bird tickets to the event here and find all other info on the website



Please login with linkedin to comment

B&T Women in Media Awards 2018 KPMG Women in Media

Latest News

Archibald Williams Wins NBA Digital, Activation & Fan Engagement Accounts For APAC
  • Media

Archibald Williams Wins NBA Digital, Activation & Fan Engagement Accounts For APAC

Independent brand and digital agency, Archibald Williams (AW) has been appointed to lead the NBA account across the APAC region. The NBA is one of the most prestigious sporting leagues in the world and basketball is one of the fastest-growing sports in Australia. Effective immediately, AW said it was “excited” to work across all digital, […]

QMS Champions Creativity As First Most Contagious APAC 2023 Sponsor
  • Advertising

QMS Champions Creativity As First Most Contagious APAC 2023 Sponsor

Leading digital outdoor company QMS has announced it is the first-ever inaugural partner for Most Contagious APAC, the landmark London event by creative and strategic intelligence company Contagious, which will be showcased in Australia on Tuesday, 12 December in Sydney and Wednesday, 13 December in Melbourne. Most Contagious is an event that delivers key advertising […]

OMG’s Annalect First To Get Meta’s Advanced Analytics
  • Technology

OMG’s Annalect First To Get Meta’s Advanced Analytics

Omnicom’s data and analytics division Annalect has partnered with Meta, giving it access to Advanced Analytics (AA) – one of Meta’s privacy-focused measurement solutions – to provide Omnicom’s clients with future-proof, next-level measurement. Omnicom is the first holding company to have access to AA. AA allows advertisers to combine their first-party data with Meta’s ads […]

AKQA Launches Eco-Conscious AI DIY Assistant Encouraging People To Gift More Sustainably
  • Technology

AKQA Launches Eco-Conscious AI DIY Assistant Encouraging People To Gift More Sustainably

WPP’s AKQA has launched Fixmas.gift, an environmentally conscious AI-powered DIY assistant, affectionately known as Fixie, for a one-stop solution for all things repair. Fixmas.gift hosts an array of guides and inspiration to empower people to prolong the lives of their belongings or purchase pre-owned items that need a little love and care. Fixie can: Help […]

Marc Collister: AI & Automation Set To Revolutionise Creativity In 2024
  • Opinion

Marc Collister: AI & Automation Set To Revolutionise Creativity In 2024

Marc Collister (pictured) of P2 Content Creators spills the beans on his 2024 predictions drawing from two decades of experience in the advertising, film and television industry. I’m certain it will come as no surprise that in 2024, we can expect our industry to move at breakneck speed again. With even more rapid shifts in […]


by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
Zeno Group Australia Bolsters Client Offerings With An Expanded Creative Services Portfolio & New Senior Leader
  • Marketing

Zeno Group Australia Bolsters Client Offerings With An Expanded Creative Services Portfolio & New Senior Leader

Zeno Australia has announced expanded creative design capabilities and the appointment of Jim Michell (lead image) to its senior leadership team. The new moves support strong growth in the region. Zeno Australia’s clients, including Abano Healthcare, Motorola and Yorkshire Tea, can now tap into a suite of creative design services to augment the agency’s work […]

Assembled Media Inks TikTok Creator Campaign for BIC
  • Campaigns

Assembled Media Inks TikTok Creator Campaign for BIC

Assembled Media, is drawing upon the creative power of TikTok Creator Marketplace to help generate unique, impactful content for iconic stationery brand, BIC. The social activation campaign titled ‘A Pen for Every Side of You’ promotes the flexibility of BIC’s 4 Colours pen and is active nationwide on the BIC Stationery TikTok account. The campaign […]

Big data and analytics visualization technology with scientist analyzing information structure on screen with machine learning to extract predictions for business, finance, internet of things
  • Media

IAB Launches Fourth Module In Its Marketing Measurement Innovation Series

IAB Australia has launched ‘Evolution in Market Mix Modelling’, the fourth module in its Marketing Measurement Innovation Series, which has been developed by IAB Australia’s Ad Effectiveness Council. The module explores what is driving the increased use of MMM and how the technique is evolving with advances in computing power and machine learning to provide […]

Aerial view of a coal fired power station with large cooling towers emitting co2 into the atmosphere. With its lights already turned on the power station is illuminated in moody twilight.
  • Media

Scope3 Expands Carbon Measurement Capabilities To Include DOOH Advertising

Scope3, the collaborative sustainability platform leading the decarbonisation of media and advertising,  announced the addition of digital out-of-home (DOOH) to its emissions measurement. With DOOH ad spending predicted to grow from $17B in 2023 to nearly $24B by 2028, measuring this channel brings us one step closer to understanding the total impact of digital advertising […]

January 14, 2023 - New York, New York, USA: 2023 NRF Big Show press conference with Composition 2024 NRF Singapore.    Photo by Ian Wagreich / © Ian Wagreich Photography
  • Marketing

Now Open For Registration – NRF 2024: Retail’s Big Show Asia Pacific

NRF 2024: Retail’s Big Show Asia Pacific, is now open for online registrations for the main conference. Jointly organized by the National Retail Federation and Comexposium, Retail’s Big Show Asia Pacific will take place from 11 – 13 June, 2024 at the Sands Expo and Convention Centre in Singapore and is expected to draw thousands […]