Christine Khor's rise as entrepreneur and business woman

Swinburne alumni Christine Khor

Christine Khor already had a flourishing career in recruitment as an entrepreneur and business woman when she decided to study at Swinburne. She took her coaching skills to a new level to help others reach their dreams.

"I am the Managing Director of Chorus Executive recruitment, co-founder of PeeplMatch and Chair of the Victorian Development Board of The Hunger Project, which is a global organisation with a clear mandate to end world hunger by 2030 through the empowerment and education of women.

My career began by accident. My first degree was Arts with a major in psychology and criminology. I was always interested in people and how people work. I’m that person at a party that everyone tells everything to.

My start in recruitment was a bit of blind luck. I saw a need to recruit for sales and marketing roles with recruiters that have sales and marketing experience. My recruitment business officially started in 2000 and I ran it for eight years in Victoria, before expanding to a national business operating in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane. I started Chorus Executive in 2013 with business partner John Davies.

Working in recruitment showed me how important it is to get people’s head’s right when building a career. I was doing a lot of coaching and counselling anyway, so this naturally led to coaching. What I do well is I connect people. What I love to do is help people grow.

My recruiting and coaching advice is to stop living your life because of money. Also, just because you can do something, doesn’t mean you should. 

I help people understand what they really want to do. Then we help them with interview techniques, CV, job search planning and networking skills, to get the connections they need for their dream job. 

I’m passionate about people being the best they can be and not being hamstrung by the restrictions of others or the restrictions they put on themselves. 

I created two new service lines in Chorus Executive for coaching and branding and thought:  I should have a qualification. That’s when I decided to go back to study and do a postgraduate Certificate in Executive Coaching

"I help people understand what they really want to do."

It’s a 12-month course that took me three years because life got in the way. I wrote a book, went to Antarctica and the Amazon, restructured my business, and started a new business along the way. 

The course has given me the ability to learn some coaching fundamentals and get structure around what I do. It’s always great to study with people who are in the same field, so you can learn from each other.

What was great about Swinburne is that they are very accommodating to people who work. When I had to change things, they were there to support that. The Blackboard (online) system was also easy to use and I got to meet some really interesting people.

I am the primary bread-winner, but at the same time I’ve had my husband’s support to make decisions that impacted our income, to follow my dreams. He said, 'Chris, I don’t care where we live – there’s no point being miserable.'

I ask people to think about that. Ask yourself the question, ‘Is what I’m sacrificing for passion in my role actually worth it?’.

You're a role model to your family and children. Do you want to be a model for your children, doing what you hate?"