2017 Hall of Fame Inductee
Wild Child WA
About Me - My Biography
Leanne Preston is the CEO of Wild Child, a natural products company that offers Australia’s first natural head lice treatment and organic baby skin care products Wild Child Baby Organics. Wild Child’s products are sold around the world and has been named the Australian Exporter of the Year multiple times. Leanne was awarded the Telstra Australian Business Woman of the Year award in 2007. She maintains a high public profile in Australia and regularly delivers speeches to business forums. She has lectured about entrepreneurship at the University of Western Australia. She was also nominated as one of the Top 100 Women of Influence in 2012.
In 2009, Wild Child acquired Harper Point Pty Ltd, which had a portfolio of more than 300 personal care and pharmaceutical formulations. This acquisition enabled augmented research and development capabilities for Wild Child, and the synergies of these two companies were tangible immediately.
In 1997, Leanne found herself a newly-single mum of three young children. She had few qualifications and even fewer opportunities in a Western Australia country town. And to add to her stress, one day, her daughter came home with a head full of lice. She treated the lice with what was considered the gold standard treatment back then – a stinging pesticide treatment. When she went to research the treatment, she discovered an alarming world of toxic effects of pesticide treatments. Inspired by the potential for safer, more natural remedies, she created Australia’s first natural head lice treatment, Quit Nits, which grew into Australia’s biggest head lice brand, available in stores around the world.
Leanne loves being able to encourage others and especially loves being a role model to her own children.
Strategies for Success
- To be successful in business, you need to possess qualities of vision and leadership and not be afraid of hard work. I have always tried to remain faithful to my principles, and my conviction that natural health care products offer much safer alternatives to highly toxic conventional treatments.
- Setting up a board of directors who have expertise in the areas you need, such as corporate governance, law, finance, science and marketing.
- The determination to be guided by ethics and to act with integrity, and to hold suppliers and business partners accountable to those same principles – Intuition, as well as information, has an important role to play in shaping business decisions. True fulfillment is found in making a difference in the lives of those who benefit from our products.
- People culture is absolutely paramount to the effectiveness of the company. Culturally, the company fosters an inclusive and collaborative approach to tackling any issues from all levels throughout the organization. Ideas and recommendations are all rigorously tested and challenged to ensure it meets the goals of the business.
- Learn to be disruptive in your industry to provoke positive outcomes.