Law and Business

"Take a chance" - A message from Alex Malley to ACU students

From his school suspension in 1978 to his interview with Neil Armstrong (yes, the 1st man who landed on the moon), Alex Malley is no ordinary leader and neither is the path that led him to his current role of CEO of CPA Australia.

On September 25th 2015, North Sydney ACU Staff and students were treated to an outstanding presentation by Alex Malley. This special event was sponsored by the ACU Careers services, ACU School of Business, and CPA Australia, and hosted by prof Marea Nicholson Associate Vice-Chancellor (NSW/ACT).

Alex Malley is a man who recognizes that each of us start life with unique circumstances and that no matter how difficult that start may be, we can all aspire to “build a big life”. He knows this because he has experienced it firsthand.  He is recognized today as a man who is true to his works and speaks his mind.

He was 1st in family to attend university and admits that one of his most striking lessons in life sometimes come from people who don’t have pretty titles and moments of utter despair. From failing abysmally in a job interview he made a decision to “live life with no fear and no embarrassment”. This became a guiding principle as he believes that “whatever you think you cannot do, you can do a lot more” and that “life is about testing and challenging yourself”.

We have to accept that success may come slowly, living day to day life, while setting goals for the future and remembering that it’s “all about attitude”. As Alex puts it, “you will all have conflicts and combats”, “you will get a job you don’t like” and “you will make mistakes because you’ve pushed yourself” so optimism and resilience are our best friends on the path to reaching our goals.

Alex Malley has been a teacher for 20 years and received a national award for teaching before he joined the private sector and he still defines himself as a teacher. He is still immensely passionate about students today even as he leads a team of 150.000 CPA members across 19 offices around the globe. He now teaches and shares through his blog on “The Naked CEO” website to his 3.2 million followers.

His Book “The Naked CEO” which he signed for students after his ACU presentation, sold millions of copies and all its proceeds go to funding the website to keep enhancing it’s teaching capabilities. He is also the host of Nine Network's The Bottom Line, a LinkedIn Influencer and a parent of seven children, one of which graduated from ACU with a teaching Degree from Strathfield.

To conclude his heartfelt presentation and before answering questions from the audience Alex Malley put his advice in one final sentence: “Life is about doing extraordinary things and there is no reason why you can’t. Just be patient, be willing to face rejection, and never give up”.

Alex Malley and CPA student ambassadors

Alex Malley and CPA student ambassadors