Dynamic Duos: Sourcey.M’s partners in work… and life

In this week's Dynamic Duos, Sourcey.M founder, Emily Murray, and director, Rob Murray, explain how they have grown their business and transformed the merchandise industry, while simultaneously raising four kids (including triplets).

In Dynamic Duos, Mumbrella each week asks two colleagues with a professional and personal affiliation to share with readers the importance of workplace relationships in an increasingly hybridised world of work.

Emily Murray:

Rob and I met when we were just teenagers. We worked at a restaurant and bar called The Keg in Ringwood (#IYKYK). After a year or so as friends, we went on our first date and, as they say, the rest is history.

Fast-forward 24 years, we’re married (14 years), we now have four kids (including triplets!), a fur baby and run a successful promotional products agency together.

Even though it feels like it happened in the blink of an eye, it’s been an epic journey over two decades. Following my university journey, I dove into advertising agencies and brand marketing roles. The idea of starting my own gig materialised when I was expecting our first child while holding a senior leadership position at a large property development company. Faced with the lack of flexible opportunities, I decided to launch my own business where I could channel my marketing passion and skills on my own terms.

Ever heard the phrase about people launching businesses to escape the 9-to-5 grind? Let me tell you, a 9-to-5 sounds like paradise. We’re in this hustle 24/7!

Early days at Sourcey.M involved crafting slick promotional products for top Australian brands. Crown Casino hopped aboard as our maiden client, and the journey gained momentum from there. Then, a curveball: two years into the Sourcey.M adventure, I found out I was expecting again – triplets! While many might’ve hit pause on their business dreams, I charged ahead. After a brief two-month maternity pause, I was back, full throttle.

Meanwhile, Rob was entrenched in the world of beer at Carlton & United Breweries (CUB) working lengthy hours and jet-setting around. It was a whirlwind phase, a bit hazy in retrospect.

We tossed up a few options like selling the business, putting on a business partner, or throwing in the towel. None of these scenarios appealed to us. We just *knew* we were onto something and on the cusp of a major transformation.

So, we took the leap – Rob left his role to join me in shaping the future of Sourcey.M. Armed with his trade marketing prowess and my creative and brand marketing expertise, along with our extensive contacts, we felt unstoppable. A decade later, Sourcey.M stands tall as one of Australia’s premier merch agencies. Our client roster, boasting names like Specsavers, CUB, Southern Cross Austereo, Dulux Group, Mitre 10, and Crown Resorts, is testament to our journey’s success.

We recently underwent a brand revamp, expanded our team, and our client family keeps growing. We’re smack dab in the midst of revolutionizing the merchandise scene, and steering this transformation is exhilarating.

Rob Murray:

Em and I crossed paths as uni students, each embarking on our academic journeys – me navigating marketing at Deakin, while Em tackled creative advertising at RMIT. Our lives intertwined at a local restaurant, and the fun was just beginning. Little did I know that this encounter would lead to marriage, four kids, and a joint business venture. The ride’s been a wild one, both on personal and professional fronts.

Our journey has been punctuated by risk-taking. Em is a risk-taker, fearlessly making bold choices – it’s in her DNA. When she floated the idea of starting a merchandise agency, I was her strongest supporter. The fact that this coincided with our first child’s arrival just added to the thrill (and, yes, the drama).

Back then, I was deeply entrenched in the trade and sales realm, orchestrating customer marketing experiences for FMCG giants like Heineken, Carlton Draught, Corona, and BigM. While I reveled in my job, witnessing Em’s journey with Sourcey.M added another layer of excitement to our lives.

Juggling business growth while raising four kids is quite the adventure. Em was right there, on the edge of a big expansion, and she needed a wingman. We just had that gut feeling about what had to happen.

I joined Sourcey.M in 2018 and haven’t looked back. Together, we have over 40 years experience in the space – and being able to drive a critical new phase of growth for the Australian merchandise industry is what we love doing together.

We are living proof that you can thrive as partners in life and in work! Em and I are both so aligned on staying true to our purpose and our customer-focussed approach, which is why we work so well.

Emily on Rob:

Most memorable moment with Rob: Choosing a single moment from two decades is a tough call. But announcing to friends and family that we were embarking on this dual work-life adventure takes the cake. People thought we were bonkers, and honestly, they might have been onto something!

Juggling four kids, sharing a roof, and running a business? It’s a handful. Yet, I wouldn’t trade it for the world. This arrangement has been a game-changer for our family – being there for school runs, sports activities, and impromptu kid chaos. If a school award ceremony or an emergency room visit crops up, one of us can sprint to the rescue. Not that I’m keeping count, but yes, there’ve been quite a few bone-related incidents!

Best word to describe him: Patient.

I am the opposite. I am full steam ahead, guns blazing. Rob is far more calm, considered and patient than I am.

Most annoying habit or endearing behaviour he has: Working in an all-female environment, I think Rob’s best trait is that he is so accommodating.

He quietly listens in the office to all the updates on the latest season of Selling Sunset, or Taylor Swift’s latest album drop and never gets annoyed (or at least he never shows it!)

Rob on Emily:

Most memorable moment with Emily: The most memorable moment is when we made the decision for me to come onboard full time with SourceyM.

The fact that Em had been able to build the business to a size that we could both work in full time was a massive achievement and together we could now focus 100% to continue to grow SourceyM into the future.

Best word to describe her: Tenacious.

Emily has a never say die attitude which has been instrumental in the success of SourceyM. It’s in our DNA to never say no, anything and everything is possible.

Most annoying habit or endearing behaviour she has: For someone meticulous about her business, clients, and product quality, Em’s perfectionism has an interesting boundary.

Unfortunately, that perfectionism doesn’t extend to non-Sourcey activities—cue the coffee cups, kitchen chaos, and the enigma that is her car. We all have our quirks, after all.


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