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It all begins and ends in your mind- you don't need to be saved or rescued, you just need knowledge of your own power and how to access it.





Vanessa Harper-Mathews   MindSense Director

MSc (CPsych.M) (BA) M (Doc.Ph) Grad.Dip (AH) Grad.Cert (S.Sc) BA (Ed) 

A polymath in the truest sense, seamlessly blending a myriad of deep knowledge across a broad and diverse range of disciplines, intellectual and creative pursuits, Vanessa's innate curiosity and her insatiable thirst for knowledge has led her to excel in multiple fields.


Vanessa teaches others the applied science of human performance enhancement & wellbeing through unique, positive psychology evidence based, professional solutions. Her approach combines values based goal setting and alignment, mindfulness, and psycho-dynamic cognitive coaching frameworks that can help leaders to identify and overcome their limiting beliefs, behavior patterns, and interpersonal challenges. The two processes can powerfully reinforce each other and promote enhanced quality of life, work performance, and leadership capacity and are suitable for all career and life stages. 

Vanessa is a highly experienced and authentic values based leader with over 30 years of corporate leadership experience in consistently achieving exceptional results. She has genuine career and leadership based experience gained from navigating through the many challenges of balancing a corporate career, wellbeing and family life.

Vanessa has 'done the 'hard yards' and understands very well both the external and internal (emotional and mental) challenges of the leadership space. She holds a wealth of industry knowledge & experience to share, alongside practical frameworks & tools to create better internal states that can help people step out of the stress, anxiety and noise that too often overwhelms our minds and impacts on both how we experience life and the success of our careers.  

Her professional expertise extends to providing strategic and operational risk management and governance solutions to Boards, executive teams and complex operational worksites across a diverse number of sectors and industries including manufacturing, retail, supply chain and logistics, property/asset management, construction, public health, power/ utilities, finance & investment services, public & private education, retirement living/ aged care. 

Her academic and intellectual expertise is evident in her deep understanding and practical application of subjects ranging from business acumen to art history, education, physical conditioning and wellbeing, risk sciences and psychology, demonstrating a rare ability to synthesize information from diverse sources and forge innovative connections.

Alongside maintaining a successful corporate consulting career Vanessa is passionate about life long learning. Her evidence based approach is backed by six university degrees, including a bachelor of Adult Education, an MBA and a Masters of Science in Coaching Psychology. She is also a professionally certified/ qualified Pilates Reformer Instructor.


Vanessa also has a professional arts practice as an internationally exhibited and published interdisciplinary artist, documentary photographer and process historian.  You can see her work at

Whether she's advocating for environmental sustainability, promoting social justice causes, leading in complex business settings, educating business leaders or inspiring others through her art and writing, Vanessa's pursuits are always driven by a sense of purpose and a desire to make a positive impact on the world around her.


Professional Mindfulness and Coaching Solutions

Mindfulness, Resilience and Values/Strengths based Workshops in the Workplace
Evidence Based
Career, Performance & Executive Leadership Coaching
Life & Developmental Coaching

The synergy of individual values based coaching and mindfulness training is compelling. Mindfulness techniques can help achieve a state of being in which professionals can think clearly about work related goals and the stressors that impair achieving them as well as building positive relationships in a professional capacity that thrive and are mutually beneficial. When people in the workplace can make positive mindset and behavior changes, they are better positioned to relax and achieve a more focused and present internal state — with all its inherent benefits. These include facilitating speed of trust with colleagues, enabling freedom to challenge without judgement or threat and more authentic, values based collaboration that supports critical business enablers such as innovation. The two approaches continually deepen and bolster each other. Building resilience creates a framework for sustained success, through learning how to integrate and continuously build on internal and external resources in a dynamic and process driven way. The workshops are a combination of targeted Evidence based Training and professional Coaching in a programmed format.


An integrated approach using positive psychology and values based executive coaching can help leaders to identify and overcome their limiting beliefs, behavior patterns, and interpersonal challenges and can help them to develop new skill sets including the capacity to think strategically and motivate others. This dual approach helps leaders identify their core intrinsic values and the challenges preventing them from aligning with these values, and focuses in depth on addressing those challenges in a synergistic fashion. This unique approach teaches mindfulness techniques in a framework that supports leadership goals such as maintaining a calm, steady presence in essential meetings or collaborating without stress and conflict with colleagues across the organisation, while building an authentic leadership presence through higher order values and goals. The two processes can powerfully reinforce each other and promote enhanced quality of life, work performance, and leadership capacity. By integrating executive coaching and mindfulness strategies in a single practice setting, we can help clients develop into more self-aware, grounded, emotionally intelligent, and effective leaders.

Adult development and body/mind theory and practice can be powerful partners for adults on the journey to self-authorship. Higher levels of thinking and problem solving are often only learnt by mistake when a persons environment or life situation changes or is challenged, but life and developmental coaching can provide a framework and support to purposefully create significant shift to how we see the world to being able to view a new, high order of meaning and understanding in our lives. This requires a longer term commitment to personal growth by the individual seeking to move to the next level of understanding and meaning in their life and a dedicated coach who provides an evidence based process and structures to guide the individual to reach a deeper understanding of self and and actively participate and take charge of their own self creation.  


Professional Coaching Solutions
Safety & Risk Management

Risk Management

Managing risk is a significant challenge organisations face today. Legislatively robust systems, cultures that encourage open and transparent collaboration and simple processes that everyone who uses them understand are all part of the risk management landscape. Risk management and risk opportunity play an important role in maintaining the reputation of the organisation, providing a safe work environment where employees can thrive, and ensuring shareholders receive value. 

Governance frameworks should be practical, match the risk and add value to the organisational culture and climate. Risk governance is core to an organisation’s overall risk management capability and a key responsibility of directors.

Organisations seeking to develop a strong risk resilient culture should regularly test and check the functionality of effective risk management systems to ensure it is fit for purpose. This enables everyone in the organisation to demonstrate accountability, which can result in significant benefits for an organisation.

Vanessa works with clients to help them to better understand and manage their risk and governance strategy and systems including developing a comprehensive integrated approach to managing all aspects of organisational risk. With over twenty five years in managing health and safety and risk, she offers a broad range of fully customisable specialised services. These include:

  • Strategic and Operational Safety & Risk management solutions

  • Organisational safety and risk cultural and climate analysis, and solutions

  • Safety and Risk Management Systems reviews and solutions

  • Safety & Risk control frameworks

  • Performance benchmarking

  • Gap Analysis Audits

  • Governance framework development and risk oversight reporting 

  • Legislative compliance reviews

  • Safety culture and change management solutions

  • Safety & Risk leadership development and training

  • Performance and governance reporting and advisory services for Boards and executive managers and teams

  • Responsible Officer training and development


Contact Vanessa

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