This week I’m chatting with Laurie Harper, a former First Class Cricketer who represented Victoria in 38 first class matches and 16 one day games as a left handed batsman amassing over two thousand first class runs. Laurie was regarded as one of the best slip fieldsman of the time and was a member of the winning Mercantile Mutual Cup team of 1997-98. Laurie also won Victoria’s Player of the Year title in 1997-98, edging out Dean Jones for the award.
Laurie gives a frank and honest account of trying to make it as a professional cricketer at a time where Australia had, without doubt, the best cricketers in the world. Playing with and against the likes of Dean Jones, Mark Waugh, Steve Waugh, Shane Warne, Ricky Ponting, Jamie love, Justin Langer, Mark Hayden, Michael Slater and Michael Bevan, Laurie certainly mixed with the best of the best.
We talk about the world of professional sport and how it has changed over the years including rates of pay and the current recruiting practices. We also discuss the pressures athletes face, the criticism levelled by the media and I ask Laurie for his take on some negative media attention he received.
With a Bachelor of Economics from Monash University, Laurie’s skills run deeper than the cricket pitch and we discuss the need for a balanced approach to life, sport and education.
While Laurie may have started in the forklift industry because “they let him go to training”, he is now the Managing Director of QLD Forklifts, a premier materials handling supplier in South East Queensland and beyond. Laurie shares what he looks for in staff and how he has taken the lessons learned on the field and transferred them into his business, company culture and leadership style.
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