My career journey: Kitty Sheridan

 Japan, Brisbane, rural Victoria, Naracoorte, Wagga Wagga and everywhere in between. Kitty Sheridan shares her career journey in the feedlot industry and the places it’s taken her.  

Kitty Sheridan, Manager of Projects and Innovations at Elders Killara Feedlot, NSW

 International travel. Beef Week and BeefEx in Australia. Career opportunities right across the country. Kitty Sheridan has embraced all that the feedlot industry has to offer since beginning as a pen rider at Charlton Feedlot.

 “I’m not sure I could even name just one highlight,” Kitty says of her decade-long career in the feedlot industry. 

“But being able to travel to Japan as part of a meat judging alumni tour was amazing, as was being able to attend Beef Week at Rockhampton and BeefEx last year in Brisbane. 

“But maybe the fact that this job has allowed me to live in multiple different states and learn so many different ways of doing things is the most incredible part.”

Climbing the career ladder

Kitty grew up on a cattle and cropping property near Dubbo, New South Wales and graduated from Charles Sturt University with a Bachelor in Animal Science. She had her sights set on a hands-on role in the cattle industry – but wasn’t sure exactly what she was looking for. 

Applying for a position as a pen rider at the then Elders-owned Charlton Feedlot kick-started her career and quickly turned into a leading hand role when she was promoted just six months in. 

A job at a Teys Australia processing plant in Naracoorte, South Australia as a livestock strategic operations soon followed, a role Kitty said proved invaluable. 

“It gave me a great understanding of how cattle are processed and that what happens at the feedlot can greatly influence the whole chain. When you think about it in its basic form, it makes sense as we are making food,” she said. 

Kitty went on to work in Wagga Wagga – also for Teys Australia – and in 2021 embraced the role of Manager of Projects and Innovations at Elders Killara Feedlot. Today she trains right across the board from livestock and operations, to HR and auditing processes.

Forefront of an exciting future 

Kitty is a participant in the ALFA Margin and People Management (MPM) program – Course 13. The course is specifically designed to help lot feeders and industry professionals gain a greater understanding of managing a modern feedlot.

“The MPM course has been fantastic. I think one of the great things that it teaches you is to recognise that different people require different things and how to understand the people you work with, and yourself, better,” Kitty said. 

Kitty embraced her time in the MPM Program, and has since delved into upskilling herself via the online training platform, Feedlot TECH.

With a diverse range of career opportunities and educational resources to support lot feeders– Feedlot TECH courses cover all feedlot departments; administration, feeding and milling, livestock, maintenance and environmental, and management – Kitty encouraged anyone considering a career in the feedlot industry to embrace it with open arms. 

“My advice would be to jump in and have a go,” she said. 

“There are so many different sides to the feedlot industry and it is a sector that wants to be on the front foot going forward. 

“There are jobs being advertised now in sustainability that we didn’t know would exist even five years ago.”

Professionals in the Australian lot feeding industry who are required to apply specialised leadership and management knowledge and skills are encouraged to undertake ALFA’s Margin and People Management (MPM) program or the Leadership Essentials virtual learning series available on the industry’s dedicated online careers and training hub, Feedlot TECH, by the Australian Institute of Management (AIM).