Bosses go undercover

Participants in the new series of Undercover Boss Australia.
Participants in the new series of Undercover Boss Australia.

MOST people dream of making their boss walk a day in their shoes.

But the chances of this happening are slim to none, unless they take part in the hit Channel Ten show, Undercover Boss Australia.

This week The Guide spoke with the CEO of Great Southern Rail, Tony Braxton-Smith, who spent time on "the frontline", serving customers, cleaning toilets, unloading luggage, making beds and tending bar on the trains.

The switch has changed the CEO's life forever and he intends revisiting "the frontline" annually.

He has also devised a new training regime which will see his management team take part in a boot camp, serving guests and getting back to basics.

"The experience gave me a completely different perspective of how the company works," he said.

"I was no longer the boss, but part of the team. I was heartened by the spirit of the people I worked with."

Mr Braxton-Smith said he had always "refrained from calling everyone a family" but the CEO was repeatedly told by his staff that is what they were.

"They said 'we are a family, we support and look after each other all the time'," he said.

This season we will also meet CEOs from Hog's Breath Cafe, Ella Bache, Hutchinson Builders, JBS Swift and The YMCA.

Undercover Boss Australia - Ten - Mondays at 8.30pm.

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