Talking courage with a Business Development Graduate

(3 minute read)

Rob Di Roberto 

Rob Di Roberto recently graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce, majoring in Finance and Management.  Earlier this year he secured a position as a Business Development Graduate at Fujitsu Australia.  Throughout his degree, unlike many of his peers, Robert never had a specific dream career that he had his heart set on, however he knew that he was motivated by working with others to help them achieve their goals and aspirations, wherever this may be.  He is focused on building relationships both internally and externally and creating a personal brand that will allow him to expand his boundaries and continue to learn.

In participating in this interview, Rob said: “I really loved doing this! Was awesome to actually reflect on how I’ve been courageous throughout my life!” I encourage everyone to stop and reflect, and to realise the courage each of us has within.

How would you describe courage?

I believe courage is doing something that is out of your comfort zone and using your abilities to make things better, even in the presence of fear and uncertainty.  It is releasing yourself, sometimes into the unknown, and believing in a positive outcome. My favourite courage quote is:

john wayne quote


What does courage look like as a student?  As a student who is also working?

As a student, I view courage as a personal mission to apply yourself and study whatever allows you to flourish and endlessly grow.  Throughout university, courage came in many different forms.  It was raising my hand to ask a question in a lecture theatre with 200 other students and organising personal tutors when I didn’t believe I was strong enough in one area.  But mostly, for me, courage was releasing myself from what I thought I wanted to do, and pouring my heart into what I actually wanted to do.  Whilst this can be challenging if you don’t particularly know where you want to go (exactly what I experienced), I harnessed motivation from making it a personal mission to complete my degree and let the avenues open up for themselves by continually applying myself – and so they did.

I often found myself too fixated on what others thought, and less on what drove, motivated and excited me.  When I applied myself to what I was passionate about, the quality of my work, outlook on life and opportunities all positively changed.

I’m a strong believer of balance.  For me, working my part-time job was just as important to my personal growth as was completing a degree.  It instilled me with responsibility, allowed me to gain an ability to follow orders, and most importantly to understand the constant, everyday communication that is so vital to every career.

Please describe 1or 2 examples of times in which you have been courageous.  What did you do?  Who/what enabled you to be courageous?  What was the outcome?  

With respect to work, I secured a position as a Business Development Graduate at Fujitsu after endless applications for graduate positions.  I’m a strong believer that everything happens for a reason and this was a prime example.  Each unsuccessful graduate application took a mental toll on me because I poured my heart into every application only to be told that I didn’t have the skills or experience to join their organisation.  I was courageous in ‘sticking it out’ and continuing to apply because I knew that I could be an asset to anywhere I’d end up.  The key message I can offer from this experience is if you continue to show courage in everything you do, good things will come and your hard work will pay off.  After continual perceived failure, I finally achieved my end goal.  And I did this by releasing myself from my comfort zone.  I kept going because I knew that I was fully capable of achieving this.  Becoming a grad at a global organisation was something I had always aspired to become.

How did courage show up in your recent university trip to Japan?

My recent trip to Japan helped me grow as a person in a multitude of ways.  This was initially a challenging venture as the change in culture, language and lifestyle definitely affected me.  I was courageous in accepting the different culture I was in, and tried to immerse myself in it; unknowing what the result might be.  It was then I was able to experience the pure beauty that this opportunity had to offer.

I became empowered and driven to try new things.  It allowed me reflect on the power of positive thinking, courage and just ‘giving something a go’.

Specific times when I was courageous during this trip include:

  • Catching a train on my own from the world’s busiest train station was something I never thought I would have done.
  • Sharing my feelings and reflections with people I had just met. All of these experiences were definitely character building and have helped me transition into my current position.  It sounds stupid, but I regularly ask myself ‘Rob- you lived and studied in a foreign country yet you’re too scared to ask someone at work for help’.  At the end of the day, it’s all about asking yourself ‘what’s the worst that can happen?’

RdiR image

Rob can be contacted on

I have had the privilege of knowing Rob for a long time … in fact, since the day he was born.  He always inspires me with his insight, his kindness and his playfulness.  

Oh, and we both barrack for Collingwood Football Club! @CourageChick


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