Tell us a bit about yourself.
I am a husband to Kerrie, father to Kirk and Madeleine, and grandfather to Liam, Sylvia, Noah and Luca.
Since retiring, I spend my time enjoying life with family – including all the joy that being a grandparent brings. I have also taken up beekeeping, using the flow hive system, and am reputed in unbiased reviews to have the best-tasting honey ever.
I am the producer of the podcast The Courage to Lead Interview Series, where I interview a suite of leaders who epitomise the skills and attributes to empower others to create supportive and inclusive workplaces, environments and communities.
I am the Executive Director of 3R Consulting – the three Rs representing Resilience, Relationships and Reputation.
I am a speaker and a specialist in leadership, specifically in empowering others to lead and create supportive and inclusive workplaces, environments, and communities, so that everyone can do their absolute best.
I live in Sydney. The Courage to Lead is my first book.
I worked in the NSW Police Force for 40 years, from 1980 to 2020, with the last 15 years of that career as a police commander. In this time, I successfully led several planned and unplanned major events in the Sydney Metropolitan Region. These events and incidents included the Mosman Collar Bomb in 2011, and the Lindt Cafe Siege in 2014 (as a forward police commander during the first two hours).
Between 2013 and 2020, I led, coordinated, and facilitated a multi-agency response to homelessness by housing hundreds of people across the central and Northern Districts of Sydney.
What draws you to writing?
Not everyone is going to be a CEO, a Commissioner, or a Prime Minister. Most of us make up the leaders who fill the roles needed to help a smaller organisation.
My experiences as a Police Officer over a 40 year career have relevance to any leader who focuses on failing, self reflection, building strong connections, and empowering others to create supportive and inclusive workplaces where we can all thrive. Doesn’t everyone want to work in a place like that: where you’re valued?
So, tell us about your book?
In a world full of leaders who put their egos first, crave power and desire the spotlight, here is a story about someone who did exactly the opposite in the autocratic arena of policing.
This is a story about someone who empowered others to lead.
This is a story about a different kind of leadership – leadership where mistakes are made and learnt from.
Over a period of time, I created a workplace and a community where people do their best, because they know they are trusted; included; supported; and cared for.
Where did the idea come from?
My leadership style worked, but it took a few years to learn what was required to make that happen. Essentially, I needed to empower others to do their best and support them. My wish is that others don’t take as long as I did, and learn from my story that there are many more possibilities available when you truly empower others to lead in a supportive and inclusive way.
What’s your writing process?
It took three years. My first two drafts were completed totally on my own, without any structure or plan – just an idea. After that, I went to Kelly Irving Expert Author Academy and learnt the structure, the ‘why’, and the ‘who’ the book is for.
The benefit of this was that I got to know other authors at various stages of their writing journey, and the community that was created allowed us all to learn from and support each other through the ups and downs of writing.
I wrote and edited best if I just aimed for 2-3 hour stints, 4 days a week. I always ensured that writing was enjoyable, and never a chore.
What are you working on next?
It may be a case study book based on my podcast The Courage to Lead Interview Series, where I summarise some of the best interviews.
When readers talk about you as an author, what do you hope they’re saying?
Quotes about Allan Sicard supplied to Busybird:
‘Allan Sicard invites us into a deeply personal journey of growth, as he navigates his way from Police Cadet to Commander. He shares his setbacks and challenges, showing us how these forged the caring, committed and courageous leader he became. Allan reflects that when we feel supported we can make it through almost any challenge, and has delivered a candid memoir that will foster courageous leadership for years to come.’
‘Allan’s role as a leader and as a mentor to those around him is an example to all, not just the challenges but the professional rewards of having the courage to lead.’
‘A fascinating and insightful read that peels back the curtain on a lifetime in uniform protecting the community.’
Any advice for other writers?
Having support of other writers was a godsend, and having a structure to work with made the difference.