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Fast Four with Tenille Gilbert

One third of Aussies facing homelessness are under 25. What if they didn’t have to? Society Melbourne is a social enterprise with the vision of eliminating youth homelessness in Australia. Dedicated to this purpose, 100% of profits from our four social enterprises, Crêpes for Change, The Coffee Cart, & home.two, go towards helping young people escape the homelessness cycle.

“Be your genuine self”

Earlier this year, Tenille Gilbert joined the yLead Team at ASLC Victoria to share the story of Society Melbourne and her insight into creating change in life after school.

“Every young person, no matter their background, should have access to every opportunity possible in creating the future of their choosing”

This is what Tenille had to share when we asked her our Fast Four questions!


What is your ‘why’? How do you stay motivated when things are tough?

My ‘why’ is an unwavering belief that every young person, no matter their background, should have access to every opportunity possible in creating the future of their choosing. I see every young person has someone who is full of potential and who may simply need a supportive community, strong role models, opportunities for education and employment, and positive feedback to allow them to access their thriving self.

What are your top three tips for working effectively in a team? 

  1. Communicate openly, effectively and often,
  2. Show empathy to your team members, always considering how a situation may be making them feel and how you can best support them,
  3. Wear your passion on your sleeve with pride and share this with your team as often as you can.

What has been the leadership lesson you have learnt in the past twelve months?

That there is no one type of leader. I think for a long time that I was under the impression that in order to be a leader I had to be always confident in my decisions, that I had to be tough and not show any vulnerabilities. In face, to be the best leader I can be, I have realised that I need to be my genuine self. My leadership style is a combination of empathy, passion and grit, and I am proud to be able to share my vulnerabilities with my team.

If you could give one piece of advice to your high school self, what would it be?

That your career path will be dynamic and non-linear. Sometimes this will be scary and you will want to jump back onto the ‘mainstream’ career path and to follow the crowd, but in fact your determination to follow your own path will mean that you will have incredible learnings and that you will form a career that fulfils you.

Check out the Society Melbourne website here or follow their Facebook Page, Society Melbourne.