After working in Law and Environmental Policy for 10 years, Kate Trumbull wanted something more so she changed direction, studied a Masters in Communications and is the Communications Manager of Car Next Door. Car Next Door has grown from a small pilot scheme in Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs in 2013 to a network of over 30,000 members sharing over 800 under-used local cars. Along the way the trio Will, Dave and Kate have raised over $5 million in funding, formed a strong team of 6 in house developers, built a proprietary software platform, and processed over 70,000 peer to peer carsharing bookings.
I wanted a change of direction and I was really interested in using communication to create positive change and particularly around things that benefit the Environment. So changing behaviour in a way that benefits the environment.
How did you get involved with Car Next Door?
Dave, my husband had already started Car Next Door about a year before I joined the company. He started it with a friend from Uni. Who also was my friend from High School and also the friend who set us up on a blind date and is responsible for us getting together.
Dave was already working in Car Next Door around the clock on this startup idea. It was really manic at the time, I gradually started doing just a few things here and there. While I was working another job at the time, and then gently Car Next Door became the most interesting of all things I was working on and something that I wanted to get more involved in. As our kids grew older and got a bit more independent. I was able to go back to work full-time and moved to working full-time as Communication Manager at Car Next Door.
Why Car Next Door?
I love that Car Next Door is using technology to solve a really big and common problem. Which is this duplication of car ownership. The fact that we are able to come up with a really new way of using resources and one that not only helps reduce the Environmental impact of cars but also helps people to save money and allows people to have access to mobility when they wouldn’t otherwise be able to. Car Next Door makes use of the good aspects of cars and car transport and helps to alleviate some of the the real problems caused by this phenomenal wastage of resources that is as a result of “everyone” having a car that they use only once in awhile.
What has been the proudest moment of your career so far?
My personal proudest moment was when the City of Sydney finally listed Car Next Door on their website after nearly 3 years of lobbying. They also changed their car share policy to recognise peer to peer car-sharing. The City of Sydney is seen as a leader in Australia in terms of Car sharing policy for them to recognise peer to peer car-sharing was a big step and as a result other councils have now come to recognise and promote peer to peer car-sharing in their car sharing policy and that has taken a lot of time and work and it feels like it’s a gradual shift in awareness of what we do and its value to communities. There was also this funny moment when we visited our friends and our kids asked why they had two cars. To which the other kids responded – one is for mum and one is for dad. And our kids were like why don’t they share and the other kids were like oh no no no my mum and dad don’t like sharing.
What is the best part of working from Hub Adelaide?
I love the light, the atmosphere, Dave spent years basically working out of our bedroom. It’s so good for your morale to go to a space where everyone is working on their own interesting ideas, you can meet great people, the coffee is excellent, the hosts are amazing, the space is beautiful and clearly so much effort is put into giving a good experience to people so that we don’t have to think about any of that. It’s just really easy, you come in on your day, you have a space to work, all the facilities are there. I love the little touches that you do, from the beautiful flowers to the flavoured water and it just makes me really happy to come to a space that is so cared for.
Car Next Door has grown to a team of 30 people living something bigger and are always on the lookout for talented people to join their team. To apply to live something bigger with Car Next Door visit https://www.carnextdoor.com.au/careers