From Green to Consecutive Gold
Just give it a go.
It's a mantra which has served Sarah Lewis well, with the 2022 Australian John Deere Parts Technician of the Year claiming the title again this year at the 2023 Technician of the Year Awards.
The Parts Manager at the Brandt Terang said it was humbling to be recognised for her commitment and hard work.
"I'm so excited to claim the title again, particularly given all the technicians across Australia and New Zealand who are just as skillful and passionate about what they do as I am," Sarah said.
"I am humbled, appreciative, and fortunate to have been given the opportunities I continue to build upon every day to support our customers."
After growing up in the Gippsland region of Victoria, Sarah initially headed into a career in a different industry before deciding to apply to work as a Parts Interpreter for Cervus Equipment, which later was acquired by Brandt.
"I studied a Bachelor of Commerce majoring in Commercial Law and International Management, and was working in tourism and hospitality, but ultimately I wanted a job that was more aligned to my regional upbringing," she said.
"From a very excited and green Parts Interpreter through to the more experienced Parts Manager, I am now five-and-a-half years on, and have been fortunate to benefit from many mentors supporting my passion and growth within the industry.
"I love that I can now mentor other staff to grow within their careers and better support our customers.
"Every single customer is important, no matter the size of their operation or machinery. The reward you get from building relationships with them and helping minimise their downtime is one of the best parts of the job."
Ms Lewis said she hopes to inspire more people to join the industry.
"I love attending careers expos or field days and speaking with people about all the opportunities that are available with John Deere and my dealership, Brandt," she said.
"Some people feel they don't suit a career in agriculture because they don't think they have an obvious transferrable skillset, but there's such a diversity of roles you can pursue, and John Deere provides the resources and programs to help us be successful.
"If you're curious or feel you may enjoy it, don't be deterred by what you don't know now. Just pop into your local dealership and have a chat — it could be the stepping stone to an exciting new career.
"It doesn't matter what your background is or where you've come from, just give it a go!"