From struggling to find a job to award winning entrepreneur
When 27-year-old engineer Giovanni Siano came to Australia from Italy in 2011, he couldn’t get a job. Applying for over 150 roles he eventually landed something in hospitality on minimum wage.
Through grit and some serious entrepreneurial determination he worked hard, slowly climbing the ladder and by 2018 opened his own aged care empire, Home Instead Geelong, which provides home care packages to the elderly.
From a strong culture of caring for the aged, he wanted to make a true contribution to this in Australia, and has since won many awards including Young Entrepreneur of the Year and Business of the Year.
Recently Home Instead Geelong was also named a Finalist in the 2022 Community Achievement Awards for regional Victoria.
The categories included Regional Development Victoria Leadership and Innovation Award, Regional Development Victoria Business Achievement Award and Ricoh Australia Customer Service Award - an extreme rarity to be nominated for all three.
Mr Siano said he has had to overcome many hurdles and challenges growing his business and career as a migrant in Australia and it makes him incredibly proud to be a finalist in this years’ awards.
“I am humbled to be again nominated for these prestigious awards and I am incredibly proud of the growth of Home Instead Geelong as I reflect on the challenging few years we have navigated.
“We have an incredibly diverse team that provides the highest quality, personal care and I thank them for their continued efforts and dedication to this business and my vision.”
When it comes to giving advice to other budding entrepreneurs in Australia, Mr Siano says find your purpose and stick to it!
“‘Empowering as many people as possible to achieve their full potential’, that was this newly developed purpose that attracted me to Aged Care, such a critical industry for our community, yet dominated by an undervalued workforce in desperate need for improvements,” he said.
“It’s also about goal setting and self-discipline; I have formed the habit of systematically writing down goals and designing detailed action plans with clear timelines. Every achievement of my life can be traced back to specific written down goals.
“And lastly, embrace risk-taking and innovation. Taking calculated risks and systematic innovation enabled me to reap significant benefits from my ventures.”
Home Instead currently looks after 1,000 clients and has 340 caregivers and 43 office staff.
This represents an increase of over 100 caregivers and 20 office staff over the last 12 months.
Despite the current workforce shortages weighing down on the aged care sector, Mr Siano has looked for innovative solutions to future-proof his workforce by establishing an in-house training program that allows him to hire support staff with no prior experience or qualifications.
“We have had to adapt and get innovative to mitigate the challenges COVID-19 and its fallout has posed but we’ve put some really successful systems in place to ensure that we are not only a desirable employer, but ensure our staff have access to the highest quality training and support to help them grow their career,” he said.
The 2022 Community Achievement Awards for regional Victoria will be held on Friday, November 11.
All Finalists are invited to attend the Awards Gala Presentation Dinner which is being held at Sofitel Melbourne on Collins where they will be presented on stage with a framed Finalist certificate. Winners of each category will be announced at the event also.