Megan Foster, Executive General Manager, Viva Energy Australia

Meet our Consumer Executive General Manager, Megan Foster.

24 Jan 2022
  • Viva Energy Australia

Hi Megan, tell us about your background and experience.

I’ve been at Viva Energy since January 2019. I was new to fuels, although not to retail. I have over 30 years’ experience starting out with Unilever after graduating from a Bachelor of Commerce majoring in Marketing and International Finance. I developed extensive experience across many sectors of Australian retail including convenience retailing, grocery, specialty, department stores and shopping centres here in Australia and the US.

I live in Melbourne with my two teenage children, Ella and Sam, husband Steve and our British Staffordshire dogs, Louis and Frankie. I grew up on a cattle farm, four hours from Sydney NSW. Naturally I’m a keen horsewoman and now a road cyclist.

What’s the most rewarding part of your job? And the most challenging?

The people are the most rewarding, both my team and our customers. Supporting the team personally to reach their destinations translates to them literally helping our customers reach their destinations via the products and services we provide at our sites.

The most challenging part in the past 2 years would be leading a team and business during a pandemic, balancing the needs and goals of the business whilst ensuring your people and, of course, yourself are taken care of during a time of unprecedented uncertainty and stress.

What are you currently working on?

The energy transition is a key focus for us all and planning for what the future will look like and what our current customers and potential new customers will need from us. This includes ensuring our network is ‘fit’ for the future as we continue to evolve our convenience offering.

Explain how COVID-19 has changed your working environment?

Clearly COVID-19 has impacted our workforce in different ways dependent on whether they are operational or support. At sites we have had to overlay many additional processes and procedures to ensure the safety of our staff and customers. We had to implement these changes at speed and our staff were incredible in adapting to the ‘New Way’.

We had to focus on the things we had control of and find new ways to get the job done.  We empowered new people within the company and within our partners, closer to our sites to step in and do tasks that would normally belong to a centralised function due to the inability to travel across State borders. In some cases, these changes borne from a crisis will be things we will continue post COVID-19 because they are more efficient and effective.

The step change from the last 2 years that I’m most proud of is the focus on mental health for not just our staff but our valued partners. We now talk openly about this as a key focus for employee and partner wellbeing and our ability to perform and function. Every person on the Viva Energy Retail team took part in a Mental Health Well First Aiders course last year.

What big milestone do you want to achieve this year?

On a personal level I would like to see my family and friends interstate. For Viva Energy and Shell I want to see growth in the number of motorists and transport operators choosing Shell.

What is your personal philosophy?

I have a few - just ask my team - but my favourite is this:

People may not remember what you said to them, but people will ALWAYS remember how you made them feel!

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