Practitioner Profile (Brett Carlsson): “The Dogs Are There and the Tools Are There—We Just Need to Work Out the People.”
Can growing up in the Australian bush be an asset to your career? In Brett Carlsson’s case, it certainly helps. Brett engages landholders in such a way that puts decision-making back in their hands. He cultivates trust, not through skills he learned in a classroom, but through years of on-ground experience. Bonding with farmers over a shared appreciation for the land allows for open and honest discussion, and helps Brett to understand their situation on a deeper level. As landholders begin to feel a sense of ownership of an issue, they come together and create local community committees. As a result, the community is able to negotiate with the local government with an organised voice. Often taking calls late into the night, Brett is convinced that his quality of relationships with landholders should be a measure of success. His ability to blur the lines between personal and professional relationships has created an important foundation for long-term community engagement and problem-solving in Queensland.