No coincidence: Women replace country’s most unpopular leaders

4 days ago 38


September 18, 2023 — 4.37pm

September 18, 2023 — 4.37pm

For astir of this year, erstwhile Reserve Bank politician Philip Lowe and erstwhile caput of Qantas Alan Joyce vied for the unenviable rubric of Australia’s slightest fashionable leader.

In the past 10 days, Joyce has near the job aboriginal and Lowe was formally replaced (on Monday) astatine the apical of the Reserve Bank. Two women volition present tally Australia’s nationalist bearer and its cardinal bank, respectively Vanessa Hudson and Michele Bullock.

Qantas CEO Vanessa Hudson and Reserve Bank Governor Michele Bullock.

Qantas CEO Vanessa Hudson and Reserve Bank Governor Michele Bullock.

It is apt not a coincidence that women person replaced Joyce and Lowe fixed some these institutions person been accused of operating without capable sensitivity to their constituents.

And immoderate whitethorn characterise these arsenic glass-cliff appointments – a word that refers to women being promoted into peculiarly hard positions wherever the accidental of nonaccomplishment is high.

However, these are inactive sought-after and almighty positions, contempt the challenges and, acknowledgment to the caller Reserve Bank review, the governor’s relation successful involvement rates decisions volition beryllium diminished. Oh, and Hudson is inactive moving nether a committee that breathlessly supported Joyce.

In the Reserve Bank’s case, Lowe was seen arsenic underappreciating the hardship imposed by rapidly raising involvement rates. Qantas had well-acknowledged shortcomings astir lawsuit work which the committee thought would beryllium amended addressed by a pistillate astatine the helm.

RBA politician  Michele Bullock has been  portrayed arsenic  intelligent, well-qualified, straightforward, honorable  and down-to-earth.

RBA politician Michele Bullock has been portrayed arsenic intelligent, well-qualified, straightforward, honorable and down-to-earth.Credit: Martin Ollman

In astir respects, Joyce and Lowe are wildly dissimilar. Joyce is simply a larger-than-life figure, centre-stage performer, issues-magnet and hard-nosed capitalist.

Lowe is simply a low-profile nationalist servant who ne'er courted wide attraction but mislaid the community’s spot erstwhile helium predicted involvement rates would stay debased for years, and not agelong aft began a bid of rapid-fire raisings.

The assemblage remains retired connected whether Lowe pushed excessively hard connected raising rates. But based connected wherever the system presently sits, helium appears to person been palmy successful holding the constrictive way helium was trying to navigate betwixt warring ostentation and avoiding recession.

Monday marks time 1 of Michele Bullock’s ascension to the nationalist service’s astir important and high-profile job.

Vanessa Hudson, right, needs to repair relations with unit   and customers.

Vanessa Hudson, right, needs to repair relations with unit and customers.

Outside the rarefied satellite of economics, Bullock is fundamentally unknown. Based connected a fewer media profiles, the caller politician is portrayed arsenic an intelligent, well-qualified, straightforward, honorable and down-to-earth idiosyncratic who takes a much collegiate attack to determination making.

But determination is small to suggest she volition instrumentality a little hardline attack to unpopular decisions connected rates than her predecessor.

Whether she is “dovish” (less assertive connected complaint rises) oregon hawkish (more assertive connected raising rates) isn’t wide based connected erstwhile speeches.

And earlier Bullock’s feet were adjacent nether the desk, the ACTU made a pre-emptive plea for the Reserve Bank to instrumentality much relationship of the cost-of-living situation successful decisions connected rates – to origin successful the acquisition of those struggling with higher involvement rates.


The bully quality for Bullock is that determination is simply a bully accidental that nether her stewardship the archetypal involvement complaint determination made volition beryllium to little them. This is not a shoo-in due to the fact that if ostentation remains sticky the Reserve Bank could opt for 1 much rise, but galore economists are predicting the rhythm of complaint increases has present finished.

But immoderate specified determination could beryllium six to 9 months away.

And had Lowe inactive been moving the cardinal bank, would this result beryllium immoderate different? Probably not.

But timing tin beryllium everything.

Vanessa Hudson, however, volition request to employment a precise antithetic strategy to lure Qantas unit and customers who person fallen retired of emotion with the airline.


She has besides received a spot of proposal from unions. The Transport Workers’ Union won a agelong ineligible conflict with Qantas past week which upheld the presumption of little courts that the hose illegally outsourced 1700 crushed handling jobs during the pandemic. It called for the resignation of Qantas president Richard Goyder.

More recently, a missive to the Qantas president from the engineers national called for the institution to sack consultants Boston Consulting Group.

It is symptomatic of the debased ebb successful relations betwixt Qantas and its unit and volition necessitate Hudson to region herself from concern relations practices employed by Joyce.

Hudson needs to simultaneously look aft aggrieved and loyal customers, disenchanted by the hose devaluing their loyalty points currency, and the roadblocks that person made it hard to usage oregon currency successful COVID formation credits.

There is plentifulness of low-hanging effect for Hudson to pick.

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