Working here, on the Sunshine Coast, I find inspiration and clarity in equal measure. Which is why I'm proud to be part of the "HQ with IQ" business campaign. Here's my story....
What could herbs and creativity have in common? Jacqui Wilson-Smith has proven it’s everything. She’s also proven the Sunshine Coast is the place to do it.
Jacqui Wilson-Smith’s job is Global Head of Innovation with McCormick, which recently purchased Sunshine Coast based Gourmet Garden. Founded on the Sunshine Coast in the late 90s with the launch of its iconic herbs in a tube, Gourmet Garden is now a global leader in chilled prepared herbs.
“I live on acreage in the Eumundi hinterland. We have horses, a poddy calf, ducks, chickens, a dog and a cat,” says Jacqui. “It’s an idyllic existence from which to work internationally.”
“At its core, Gourmet Garden is a creative, innovative business,” she says.
“I use design thinking principles to get up close with our customers and understand what’s bothering them. Then we invent new ways of delighting them with herbs!”
According to Jacqui, living on the Sunshine Coast delivers the best of all worlds.
- A wonderful mix of influences, with staff living in all kinds of villages across the Coast.
- An authentic passion for creativity.
- City influences because of regular travel.
- A refreshing talking point when interacting with international colleagues.
- No commuter rat race or city-style bombardment to the senses.
“Gourmet Garden exports more than 60% of its products, so we all work at a competitive, international pace,” says Jacqui.
“Compared to when I lived in London, the Sunshine Coast naturally delivers breathing space. It’s like an injection of mindfulness every day.
“I am in a global role, I travel regularly. I feel lucky when I return to such an authentic, creative environment.
“We have regular conference calls with colleagues and distributors in the USA, UK, Spain, France and the Netherlands.
“We can hear their sirens and bustling city noises in the background. They can hear the chorus of kookaburras and cicadas.
“As global headquarters, I feel like our location has established a foundation for authenticity and creativity within Gourmet Garden.
- Easy access to international travel.
- An authentic lifestyle, whether beach or bush.
- Lush, green surroundings that bring clarity and creative thinking.
- An enviable, yet affordable lifestyle: Jacqui lives on five acres, 20 minutes’ drive to work.