Welcome to the first edition of our Zart Global Muse Series!
What better occasion than International Women's Day to launch the first edition of our Zart Global Muse Series. In this series, we profile our favourite muses who not only inspire us and everyone around them but are also making a lasting and positive impact in the world. They also happen to do all this with impeccable style and a little panache.
Who would we feature in our inaugural edition? None other than our favourite muse and friend - Ali Green, CEO and Co-founder of Pantera Press.
What is your name and what do you do?
Hi, I’m Ali Green I’m the co-founder and CEO of Pantera Press, a leading independent book publishing company based in Australia.
We’re a social purpose business meaning that all elements of our business model speak to our broader focus on championing writing culture by investing in the next generation of writers, readers and leaders.
We started 13 years ago, and today are the #1 fastest growing independent publisher. We’re the home for many incredibly talented, best-selling and award-winning authors. And since 2008, the Pantera Press family has contributed over $2.42MM towards programs working to close the literacy gap or to counter socio-economic disadvantage.
What are three words that best describe you?
Passionate, driven, people-focussed
What are you most proud of?
I’m a career woman. I work really hard, with my amazing team, to kick goals, innovate and spark change.
I’m in this very fortunate position where I love what I do for work and it’s what gets me up in the morning. I’ve spent years trying to tie my passions into the work that I actually do.
That said, in order to do everything that I do, I need to be running off a full tank of fuel. And what fuels and supports me are my amazing friends, partner and family (as well as chocolate & sleep).
So thats actually what I’m most proud of - nurturing, and valuing, these great friendships that stand the test of time. Being surrounded by great people (like Loucineh) who constantly challenge and inspire me. It’s easy to take these sorts of things for granted, but these relationships are the key to my success and happiness.
What are you passionate about?
Having impact, in my lifetime.
My grandparents arrived in Australia, fleeing war, without speaking any English. Because of this, my family’s philosophy has always been that education is the key to opportunity and that has certainly underpinned the creation of Pantera Press and our social purpose business model.
We started Pantera Press in 2008 to fund the changes we wanted to make in society: championing writing culture, closing the literacy gap in Australia and encouraging a reading culture.
Outside of Pantera Press I spend my time mentoring young or aspiring leaders, talking to traditional businesses about incorporating social purpose and I’m involved in a few tech initiatives looking for creative ways to supercharge literacy and social change.
I’m also a champagne collector (and drinker!)
Who would you say is your hero or person you look-up to and admire?
Two kick-ass superhero’s of mine are Shemara Wikramanayake (CEO of Macquarie Bank) and Robyn Denholm (Chair of Tesla).
Both are incredible, smart and successful Australian women - who I have the pleasure of knowing.
To me, Shemara and Robyn demonstrate the new wave of leadership. Leaders that show compassion, kindness, and active listening. Leaders that understand that these are real strengths when it comes to leading and influencing.
It’s time to say goodbye to the leadership styles of old: excessive ego, hubris, aggression, and being the loudest voice in the room.
Don’t mistake my kindness for weakness. I can be firm, when I need to be, but my default is always to be human first and understand and connect with my colleagues and those around me. Shemara and Robyn both paved the way for this kind of leadership style.
I would also like to shout out two other magnificent and stylish women - Katie Sturino and Lil Ahenkan (Flex Mani) both who are inspirational when it comes to starting conversations around body positivity and size inclusivity (#makemysize).
What is your biggest fear?
It’s definitely not failure. Failure is so important to growing and learning.
For me - I think it’s a fear around not getting work/life balance right (or waking up with a spider on my head).
What would you change about yourself if you could?
My willingness to say “no”.
I’m a do-er and always love helping those around me. Getting creative and collaborating/brainstorming is such a joy. However it often means I take too much on, and can easily head to burnout. I’m much better at saying “no” to things I can’t take on now, but I’d still like to feel less guilty about it.
One of our authors, Mary Hoang, has written an important book called Darkness is Golden. In part it’s a great guide to setting boundaries and looking after yourself - because we know you have to take care of yourself in order to have the fuel/tools to succeed or take care of others.
I think these (unattributed) quotes really say it all:
“She believed she could, but she needed a break. So she said no. And the world went on and it was ok”.
“You are not required to set yourself on fire to keep others warm”
How would you describe your style?
Classic with a statement element. I would estimate that 90% of my wardrobe is black - I like to play with textures and statement pieces (especially gold), as opposed to colour.
That said, I’m always a fan of a bold red lip, a shoulder pad and some bling.
What are your favourite fashion brands?
Zart (obviously), Jennifer Behr and Gucci are my go to’s for both statement accessories, as well as pieces that can add some flair to an otherwise classic outfit.
What's your favourite Zart piece?
The Madrid Earring - Pearl. Classic and statement rolled into one, absolutely my style (plus it is the perfect transitional piece: from daytime corporate to evening wear, right though to weekend fun).
What are you currently listening to?
Song on repeat: "I'm it" by Kota Banks. Latest podcasts include Criminal and "We don't have time for this"