My Career Transformation
How Louise Nash made a life-changing career shift to align her skills with her passion.
Louise Nash was at the top of her game in the dynamic world of brand strategy, helping companies stand out from the crowd with her award-winning campaigns. But she reached a point where the shine on the finish was not quite enough - she wanted something more; to somehow make a contribution to a big brand that somehow wasn’t getting the attention she felt it deserved - Planet Earth.
I didn’t want to walk away from everything I knew and had learnt but I kept looking at the environmental issues we are facing and really felt I had something to offer. I just wasn’t quite sure what that looked like or how to get there.
Louise found the answer through a Master of Technological Futures at Tech Futures Lab. The Master’s gave her the opportunity to immerse herself in a world of new ideas and information and find a way to focus her existing skills on her new purpose.
“My role for the last 20 years had been driving economic growth for brands and businesses. I thought about how I could bring that to the table to solve the environmental challenges we are facing. I discovered the work of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation and the circular economy...The idea that we can create circular systems that are restorative and regenerative by design, which will allow businesses to get economic and social value without environmental degradation.”
She successfully translated her Master’s research into a practical Circular by Design methodology, designed to empower environmental problem-solving for businesses in a radically changing world. Through her Master’s, Louise also established her agency Circularity, which crafts circular strategies, runs circular design sprints and provides circular tool-kits and methods to radically redesign business for the circular economy. Strategies like using waste as a resource, creating products as a service and designing out waste at the outset are just some of the methods used to reduce the unintended consequences of growth in a linear economy.
“The Master’s really teaches you to fall in love with the problem and that is something that I’ve woven strongly into my business approach.”
She particularly loves working at the intersection of technology and circular thinking, exploring how new products and processes can enhance sustainability. “I’m excited about the use of Mycelium [threadlike fungal structures] as a compostable alternative to plastic or styrofoam packaging,” says Nash. “The Master’s gives you opportunities to engage face-to-face with innovators at the cutting-edge of their industries. It makes it all feel really accessible, gives you confidence to have discussions in that innovation space and see how you can apply your skills to new industries.”
Her excitement is catching and Louise is getting a great response to her business pitch.
“This current government and in particular the Ministry for the Environment is encouraging businesses to take responsibility for the impact we all have on the planet and be part of the solution. In turn, businesses are seeing circular economy as a market advantage in response to customer demands. The momentum behind this is massive.”