Trust your intuition.

Engage in the right sort of deliberate practice.  Invest time, genuine feedback, highly motivated, expert coach to recognise mistakes and dvise strategy for improvement.  Concentrate on developing the weak points.  Self regulation and set clear goals.

When making a mistake attempt to fix from memory.  do not always start at the beginning, start in different places.

A focus on making the music beautiful, not how well I can play it.

Learning:  Visual, Auditory Kinaesthetic.

Main Motivators:  sense of achievement, recognition, the work itself, increasing responsibility, opportunity for advancement and growth.  Motivated rather than imposed.

Attention:  what has meaning, value, what are you learning and why, what is most important, what to ignore, eliminate distractions, time limit, structure reading, self-discipline.

Use several shorter sessions, chip away daily, rest the brain and for 100 minutes of study take a 40 minute rest. Isolate details and read for specific information.  Distinguish between interesting and important. Organise information and provide structure.

Need context, prior knowledge affects how we perceive new information.  Think about situations that are similar, recap key points from prior knowledge, prior knowledge can lead to incorrect assumptions, ideas are testable, be curious. Move information around and vary the structure as you learn.  Take the effort to learn the difficult material.

Build your brand with motion graphics + animation


The Australian screen industry is in the fight of its life.

We want Australian stories told on Australian screens by us, to us, about us.

We want to Make it Australian.

Performers, producers, writers, directors and crew are joining forces to campaign for the future of the screen industry.

The campaign was launched in 2017. Now, more than 200 leading actors, directors, screenwriters, producers, editors, cinematographers and other screen workers have penned an open letter to the government calling for action to protect the industry.

Will you join us?

ENTERTAINMENT ASSIST  |  Free Mental Health Support Videos available for Australian Entertainment Industry

Thousands of people from the Australian Entertainment Industry are set to benefit from the free mental health support videos which have been specifically produced by Entertainment Assist to support members of the industry during the COVID-19 crisis.

The health and wellbeing webinars are an expansion of the Entertainment Assist mental health training programs and information sessions provided in workplaces and institutions prior to the current crisis.

How to Stay Safe on Set During COVID-19

The recent death of a 51-year-old assistant director is bringing renewed focus so proper COVID safety protocols on film sets. Productions are already a lot of work, and, as we all know in the industry, there are many moving parts that make a film, show, or commercial come together. The outbreak of Covid-19 has created new challenges for the film industry, with personnel being deputized as Covid-19 Compliance Officers and the rest of the crew getting a crash course in infection control. When training for a healthcare profession infection control was part of our curriculum that usually covered a semester of in-class lectures coupled with hours of clinical training as well. This included pillars of infection control and mitigation as well as proper usage of PPE (personal protective equipment) and the proper handwashing technique. Obviously this training is not part of film production, but in the current climate, it is important for film crews and even talent to understand the importance of infection control and the proper methods to prevent the spread of infection. Doing so can prevent productions from being shut down and can prevent sickness and death as a result of COVID-19.

SUPPORT ACT  |  the heart and hand of Australian Music

Support Act is Australia’s only charity delivering crisis relief services to artists, crew and music workers as a result of ill health, injury, a mental health problem, or some other crisis that impacts on their ability to work in music.

Established in 1997, our goal is to provide breathing space to help members of the music industry to get back on track when they have hit a tough patch or just need breathing space.

Our assistance can take the form of paying the rent or the mortgage, buying a bed or wheel chair, paying for car repairs, medical / dental / phone / electricity bills, or a credit card debt. We provide referrals to other support services; funding for funerals; and we support friends and family seeking to raise funds for an artist or music worker in crisis through our Help a Mate program.

In June 2018, we established the Support Act Wellbeing Helpline – a free, confidential 24/7 counselling service that is available to anyone working in Australian music who needs to talk about any aspect of their mental health. It can be accessed by calling #1800 959 500.

Support Act raises funds from the music industry and its supporters. This can be in the form of donations, sponsorship, community fundraising, Help a Mate appeals, events such as our annual “Music in the House” industry lunch, and promotions such as Ausmusic T-Shirt Day.


Performers, crew and creatives enthusiastically offer their services to help others in need, but there are often occasions when members of our industry need assistance too.


A one-off emergency payment to support INDEPENDENT ARTISTS IN THE PERFORMING ARTS who have been significantly affected by COVID-19 in Australia and who do not have access to a financial safety net. We seek to ensure artists are able to continue their practice while dealing with the day to day impacts of COVID-19 on their lives. Applications for Support Open Now.

Australian Screen Production Industry COVID-Safe Guidelines 28 May 2020 Version 1

These Guidelines have been developed by an Australian Screen Sector Task Force and are intended to provide support and assistance to all practitioners (from screen producers to individual workers) in the Australian screen production industry in returning and recommencing productions in order to eliminate and minimise the risks associated with exposure of personnel to COVID-19 while working on a production. These Guidelines are a live document which offer up-to-date, practical advice, drawing on a range of resources and consultation with the federal Chief Medical Officer’s team, and will continue to evolve alongside the advice of governments and sector best practice.


The Work Well Guide is a resource that provides performing arts organisations/collaborators with practical strategies and evidence-based tools and techniques for creating mentally healthy workplaces. 

NOTABLE VALUES   Susan Eldridge

At a time when many arts organisations are struggling to innovate operational and artistic models, Susan Eldridge has imagined and delivered transformation for organisations from the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music (MCM) to the Melbourne Recital Centre (MRC), the Victorian Youth Symphony Orchestra (VYSO) and the Australian National Academy of Music (ANAM).

Susan is guided by two unflappable goals: to rewrite the relevance of the arts and to place the human experience at the centre of her radical solutions.

I Need Australian VFX crew (PAID professional only)

Please feel free to share VFX opportunities for the wealth of talent in the Australian freelance VFX community.
A supporter of remote work but please also post your in studio work.
A board to post paid jobs and search for professional VFX crew based in Australia and New Zealand.
The entry questions must be answered to gain entry to this group.



Do you operate a small business in the City of Sydney local area?

The Department of Planning and Industry runs a helpful program aimed at small to medium businesses called Business Connect. The program offers, low-cost, highly subsidised, tailored business mentoring with expert advice on managing your small business and business skills development.

TED talk.  Christine Porath, Management professor researcher.  Christine helps organisations build thriving workplaces.

Looking to get ahead in your career? Start by being respectful to your coworkers, says leadership researcher Christine Porath. In this science-backed talk, she shares surprising insights about the costs of rudeness and shows how little acts of respect can boost your professional success — and your company’s bottom line.

Mastering Civility: A Manifesto for the Workplace Paperback – 10 Jan 2017  by Christine Porath (Author)

How Teradici is Securing the Hybrid Workplace and Learning Environment

Companies are turning away from VPN in favor of Zero Trust Architecture as hybrid workplaces and learning environments become the new norm.  To learn more about their findings, VMblog spoke with Teradici’s distinguished technologist, Ian Main.

BARTERCARD  |  Why barter in business?

Business owners love bartering because it saves them cash; moves excess stock or idle inventory and fills up their downtime or spare capacity. Chances are you have conducted a one-to-one barter deal in the past and the outcome was win-win.

However, while these traditional barter deals can be effective, they lack flexibility, which limits how often they may occur. The challenge with a direct one-on-one barter is you might want something that one business has but they may not want what you have. By creating a currency of trade dollars you can trade conveniently with tens of thousands of members worldwide.

AFTRS (Australian Film Television and Radio School) COVID-Safe Guidelines & Production Protocols

To establish a COVID-safe environment, AFTRS must implement a risk-based approach to both returning to the Building and re-commencing face-to-face coursework and production.

6 Practical Business Lessons For Freelance Artists

Let’s face it. You didn’t become a freelance artist because of your burning passion for paperwork. In some ways, the lack of paperwork may have been part of the allure. When you think of a professional artist’s typical work day, you imagine working crazy hours whenever you feel inspired, collaborating with fellow creative minds, and resisting typical business jargon like (shudder) synergy.

4 Time Management Tips for 3D Artists

4 Proven Tips to Find Meaningful Time to Create

In a world of responsibilities and distractions, it’s a constant struggle to carve time out to create. Whether it’s completing a personal project while holding a day job or investing one hour a week to learn a new skill, optimizing time and space can increase inspiration, production, and artistic growth. Here are four proven methods you can use to create more meaningful time to create.

Working from home? 5 Tips To Stay Positive and Productive 

In 2020, many of us have found ourselves suddenly working from home. While this might be a dream come true for some, others miss the office and face new challenges trying to get their work done.  Although you’re saving time not commuting to the office, working from home doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re getting more done. In fact, it can make it harder to be productive. And with fewer opportunities to socialize in person, you might even notice a feeling of loneliness creeping in.

Working from home because of coronavirus? You’re now eligible for a new 80 cents per hour tax shortcut

Claiming tax deductions for working from home due to coronavirus is being made easier.  The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) is introducing a new method which will allow people to claim 80 cents per hour for all their running expenses, rather than needing to calculate costs for specific running expenses.

AMERICAN FILM MARKET Worldwide COVID-19 Film Production Guidelines

As the world begin to reopen, official production protocols and safety guidelines relating to COVID-19 are being released by countries, states and organizations. To help keep track of the latest information across the globe, we will update this page, Worldwide Covid-19 Film Production Guidelines, with relevant information as it becomes available.  Please note that multiple guidelines will likely apply to each production, including  national, local, and organizational such as guilds, unions, trade groups and other NGOs.

COVID-19: New Film/TV Producer, Cast, and Crew Risks & Solutions Featuring Attorney Justin Sterling

In this recorded workshop seasoned attorney and litigator Justin Sterling, Esq, founder of The Sterling Firm (THESTERLINGFIRM.COM), addresses what film/tv producers, cast, crew, and and other industry business owners need to know COVID-19 and it’s impact on everything from insurance and financing to hiring requirements and set hygiene.

Surviving as a freelancer during the COVID outbreak, with Alison Grade

Author Alison Grade shares practical advice on dealing with financial uncertainty in these challenging times, as well as helping current …

Being Resilient During Coronavirus  |  Rick Hanson, Ph.D

During times like this, it’s natural to feel afraid, anxious, or threatened. The brain has evolved to react quickly to threats, and it’s easy for there to be a sense of helplessness associated with problems that appear far beyond our control.  But being consumed by fear causes wear and tear on the body, which actually undermines your safety. That’s why it’s so important to look for ways to be effective and express our agency, even if it’s only through how we choose to think about things.  Below you’ll find suggestions and resources for how to do just that during this challenging time. Please share this page widely. These resources are free for all.

Government and Industry give green light to British Film Commission Production Guidance for Film and High-End TV Drama, kick-starting UK screen sector’s recovery

The UK Government has today welcomed the comprehensive ‘Working Safely During COVID-19 in Film and High-end TV Drama Production’, published today by the British Film Commission and produced as part of wider BFI Screen Sector COVID-19 Task Force recovery initiatives.The support from UK Government for this industry-led Guidance signals confidence in the UK screen sector to safely restart production and help support UK economic recovery.

Paper Scripts Will Go Away in Hollywood Plan to Restart Production

Apaper script getting passed back and forth on the set of film or TV is a dangerous thing in the coronavirus era. In a new proposal to states and local governments, producers suggest that’s one thing that will have to go if work is to start up again.

“Whenever possible, use of paper should be minimized. Alternatives such as electronic scripts and electronic sign-in/out should be explored,” the document states. Amid expected ideas about increased distancing between workers, use of masks other personal protective equipment, and sweeping sterilization of commonly touched objects, this is one of the surprising common-sense changes that will have to be implemented to ensure the show can go on.


Many companies have been making VDI brokering products from more than 10 years, such as LeostreamCitrix and Ericom. Based upon the need for handling multiple access sessions with limited network resources and simplifying IT management infrastructure.  The trend of people working remotely is inevitable, VDI provides a great solution for this. But how to manage multiple VDI sessions at the same time? This diagram shows a typical VDI scenario with PCoIP protocol, where many employees are remotely accessing their computers inside Company A.

What Will The Entertainment Industry Look Like When We Get Back On Set?

Though the demands of production will eventually return, our industry is currently in a state of paralysis. While some have been able to properly establish social distancing to move forward, productions of all sizes have slowed down or come to a halt entirely. The demand for these projects will eventually return and will likely be even greater than before, but what will it look like to get productions up and running again? When will it start? How can we be safe on set when even a small production has dozens of people collaborating and sharing equipment?

Enable Your Remote Workforce Today

COVID-19 is impacting many organizations worldwide as individuals are forced to work from home to protect public health. Teradici is committed to supporting companies through their search for a sustainable solution to enable their remote workforce quickly and easily. We are here as experienced advisors with guidance to help you maintain secure and uninterrupted operations during this global crisis.

Beyond Busy  |  Surviving as a freelancer during the COVID outbreak, with Alison Grade

Author of The Freelance Bible, Alison Grade, shares practical advice on dealing with financial uncertainty in these challenging times, as well as helping current and prospective freelancers find and demonstrate their value.  Alison talks about building brands, helping your customers understand what’s in it for them, not what’s in it for you.  Graham also chats with Beyond Busy producer Mark Steadman, about his plan to help people start a new podcast project from home.

How To Manage A Shoot During The Coronavirus Pandemic

Medical risk assessment and risk mitigation directives for film production   By DR. JEREMY CUMPSTON MBB

We asked our Medico Dr Jeremy Cumpston MBBS to give us his professional advice on this vexing subject. Jeremy is no stranger to film sets. He is an accomplished Firm Director his latest being “Bilched,” only recently released. Additionally he is an experienced actor with past roles in a number of famous Australian Drama series. These days Jeremy juggles his Directing and Acting work with his thriving Sydney Anti-Ageing Medical Practice .For his professional advice regarding your next shoot and risk mitigation, email him at

Hollywood Unions Release COVID-19 Safety Guidelines for Film, TV Production

Hollywood’s unions and guilds as part of the industry-wide safety committee, including the Directors Guild, SAG-AFTRA, IATSE and the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, have jointly released their COVID-19 safety guidelines that will provide a framework for how Hollywood can resume film and TV production, with a large focus on the protection of performers.


This document represents what we believe to be a path for employers to provide a safer workplace for their cast and crew members in a pre-vaccine COVID-19 world. Taking action based upon these guidelines is an essential and necessary element of any such return to work.

The Broadcasting Solution: How to Work From Home During a Pandemic

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues globally, every single person has had to adapt and change their daily routine. In keeping with social distancing practices, these efforts frequently result in many individuals needing to work from their homes. One group in particular that we’re seeing adapt spectacularly to this situation are the anchors, reporters, and meteorologists who continue to broadcast remotely. Despite the unprecedented circumstances, they continue to keep the public informed every day.

How do they do it? Let’s break down some of the different components that allows them to successfully broadcast from home.

On-Demand Webinar: Remote working for broadcast and media organizations

In addition to the video, we’ve created a transcript of the questions and answers from the webinar. These questions will provide some insight into what some of your peers are thinking about in regards to remote work. You can download a copy here.
You may also be interested in:
Remote Solutions for News Production Ofir Benovici, VP, Media Enterprise, shares how broadcasters are transitioning to remote and distributed workflows to stay on air during uncertain times.

Adjusting to Work Life at Home

We’ve seen a monumental change in the industry in the last 30 days.  One that none of us ever saw coming We saw the build up of the tidal wave with the cancelling of major industry events like NAB 2020 to the closing of movie theatres and the push back (and even quick releasing to home entertainment) of major Hollywood titles (Mulan, Black Widow, etc), but now companies and freelancers are making an even bigger shift to the working at home model.  Now, I’m not here to discuss this, as Scott Simmons and Michael Kammes already had a great discussion of this on the PVC podcast. What I want to talk about is other things that you can do now that you’re either social distancing, working from home or even self quarantined. Some of the suggestions are straight forward, some are light hearted, so let’s take a look at some things to do to broaden our physical and mental horizons while adjusting to work life at home.

Industry-Wide LaborManagement Safety Committee Task Force

The Industry-Wide Labor-Management Safety Committee Task Force (the “Task Force”) respectfully submits the following guidelines for consideration and adoption for the resumption of motion picture, television, and streaming productions in an environment that minimizes the risk of contracting or spreading COVID-19. These recommendations set forth the consensus of the Task Force and outline guidance regarding protective measures to be used, including regular screening, diagnostic testing, use of personal protective equipment, cleaning and disinfecting work sites, and appropriate response should an employee contract COVID-19 or be exposed to it.


We will keep updating this page and documents


On Demand |  Learn invaluable information and insights into enabling technologies for remote working.  Learn how you can be productive in remote environments for Media and Entertainment Workflows, including:
• Remote access and control of on-premise workstations
• Remote editing with cloud and proxy-based workflows
• Delivery of broadcast-quality pictures using cellular networks
• Workflow orchestration and automation
• Cloud solutions and hybrid workflows

A Guide for Artists on How to Ask, Receive and Give Quality Feedback

Mandrin Gaudez is a 3D modeler at Illumination Mac Guff in Paris, France. Mandrin’s focus is on characters but he loves working on vehicles, mechs and weapons too.

Mandrin also spends his time Teaching Zbrush and Modeling to students at Brassart and ECV and is also a Modeling mentor. With his experience, he shares with us his guide for artists on how to ask, receive and give quality feedback.


The e-learning and online course market are soaring to new heights and estimated to be worth $325 billion by 2025. With higher education shifting from lectures to virtual classrooms, you can also profit from online course platforms.  I reviewed and ranked the 13 best online course platforms and provided the top 10 ways to create and sell online courses.  This ultimate guide ranks and compares software based on reliability, features, marketing tools, profit potential, technical support, and pricing.  Disclaimer: This article contains affiliate links where I may receive a small commission for at no cost to you if you decide to purchase one. However, these are the tools I fully recommend when it comes to launching online courses and the commissions help me provide free content. You can read my full affiliate disclosure in my privacy policy.

The Productivity Ninja’s Guide to Working From Home

Do you need help Working From Home (WFH)?
Are you struggling with the change environment?
Need help to figure out how to make WFH actually work for you?

We’ve put together this handy page of resources to help support you, whether you’re new to WFH or have been doing it for years.

How to work from home the right way

Working from home isn’t a new concept, however as companies around Australia roll out work from home policies, for some it may be new territory. Many Australian companies offer flexible working arrangements and for most, working from home is usually only done on a short-term basis. Working from home for longer periods can be hard to adjust to and you might find yourself wondering if your internet will be able to adjust to the increased usage and having multiple devices online at the same time.

Two Affordable Standing Desks for Temporary Telecommuters

Motorized standing desks are increasingly popular in offices because they let computer users alternate between sitting and standing positions at the touch of a button.  But vanishingly few people outfit their home offices with such bulky, pricey furniture. So what should you do if you’re missing your standing desk or are just looking to get out of your uncomfortable chair?

Best Ways to Send Money Internationally

An interesting article, a summary of 5 ways to transfer money using money transfer companies as opposed to banks.


Rick Hanson, Ph.D., is a psychologist and New York Times best-selling author. He’s been an invited speaker at NASA, Oxford, Stanford, Harvard, and meditation centers worldwide. His books are available in 28 languages and include ResilientHardwiring HappinessBuddha’s BrainJust One Thing, and Mother Nurture. His work has been featured on the BBC, CBS, and NPR.

A New Paradigm for the Business of Indie Film  |  podcast

You’ll learn how to build audiences online, cut out the middle men, and sell directly to your fans. More than that though, it’ll be a complete education in creative entrepreneurship and ethical marketing, featuring what I’ve learned over the years, as well as super in-depth interviews with filmmakers.

4 T.I.P.S to Prepare for Your Big-Break

Before Igor Staritsin was a well-established Matte Painter and Concept Artist who contributed to titles like “Maleficent,” “Game of Thrones,” “Assassin’s Creed Origins,” “Uncharted 4” and more…he was just like any beginner artist waiting for his big break. But Igor didn’t just sit around hoping his artistic career would pan out. He took the steps to position himself in a good place, so when his chance finally came, he was ready.

10 essential Soft Skills you need to get a job in film, games and design industries

Everyone seems to be talking about soft skills these days and it’s for good reason too. They really can be the difference between a long and success career, and one spent sitting on the sidelines not being asked to play.

How to Navigate Employment Changes in the Entertainment Industry

  1. Find Stability in Flexibility
  2. Pay Attention to Big Picture
  3. Make Yourself Uniquely Valuable
  4. Monitor Your Workload
  5. Stay Curious
  6. Don’t Wait Around
  7. Cut Yourself Some Slack
  8. Lean on Your Community

To Reach Your Goals, Identify What’s Holding You Back

Starting a business is an exciting time. But, it can also be an emotional roller coaster. It’s not uncommon for business owners to feel stuck during the brainstorming phase.  If you aren’t confident that you have what it takes to fulfill your aspirations, you’re not alone. To move toward achieving your business goals, identify what’s holding you back. Targeting and finding solutions to any obstacles can help you overcome them and return to the exciting journey ahead.

How to Read Minds and Decode Artistic Feedback

If we’ve said it once, we’ve said it a million times. Feedback is the most important tool for an artist. It allows creatives to learn better workflows, produce more effective products, and gain new perspectives on their own art. But let’s be honest, it’s not as simple as following every piece of instruction, from everyone, all the time.

How To Stay In The Creativity Zone

What skills do you need as a Junior Compositor?

5 valuable lessons from 3D industry professionals

6 Tips To Grow Your 3D Business

Rookie Awards Entrants Making Waves in the Creative Industries

Career Advice: Becoming a Previs Artist

Career Advice: Starting Out as a Freelance Concept Artist

Career Advice: Rookie Awards Finalist to Junior Lighting TD at Cinesite London

Career Advice – Working as a QA Specialist at Ubisoft with Thibault Leblan

Want a successful career working as a QA Specialist in Game Development? ArtFX School graduate, Thibault Leblan, is a Junior QA Specialist and aspiring Level Designer working at Ubisoft Berlin on FarCry 6. He sits down with us to share his journey and advice to aspiring programmers and designers looking for an exciting and challenging career like his own.

Career Advice – Working as a 3D FX Artist with Mattia Rodini

Around 2014 while playing with Blender, Mattia Rodini slowly realised his interest for proceduralism and simulations and picked up Houdini. The rest is history for this recent CG Spectrum (Advanced Houdini Diploma) graduate! Mattia is now working at Bardel Entertainment in Vancouver, Canada, where he can contribute to crafting amazing effects.

Career Advice – Working as a Concept Artist with Gaëlle Seguillon

Gaëlle Seguillon, a graduate of ArtFX, is a concept artist and matte painter with over 7 years of experience in the movie and video game industry, currently working at Quantic Dream in France.  Over the last few years, she had the opportunity to work with amazing companies like ILM, BBC, Lucasfilm and Quantic Dream. She is known for her work on Guardians of the Galaxy Jurassic World : Fallen kingdom, Aladdin and Ready Player One.

Career Advice – Working as a 3D Animator with Ian Lade

Want a successful career working as a Junior 3D Animator? Ian Lade, recently completing a Master of Animation and Visualisation at the UTS Animal Logic Academy, is a Junior Animator at Luma Pictures.  Ian sits down with us to share his journey and advice to aspiring artists looking for an exciting and challenging career like his own.

Career Advice – Working as a 3D Environment Artist at Gameloft by the Scout

Want a successful career working as an Environment Artist in Games? Alessandro Bonfanti Llambrich is a Junior Environment Artist at Gameloft headquarters in Barcelona, and he sits down with us to share his journey and advice to aspiring artists looking for an exciting and challenging career like his own.

‘Just add women and stir’: why gender equity numbers don’t always add up

Women aren’t the problem in the film industry, men are

Australian research ‘has a Daversity problem’: Analysis shows too many men work mostly with other men

Cannes of worms: true gender equality in film will take more than ‘just add wome

Net effects: examining strategies for women’s inclusion and influence in ASX200 company boards

Honey, I Hid the Kids!

DECIDING ON DIVERSITY: COVID-19, Risk and Intersectional Inequality in the Canadian Film and Television Industry


We are leveling the playing field for the globalentertainment industry.  Relationships matter. The entire entertainment industry runs on them. You’ll need allies and champions to succeed. Stage 32 offers a welcoming, positive, and collaborative community of like-minded creatives and professionals designed to help you find your tribe.

Creating New Income: A Toolkit to Support Creative Practice

Looking for advice on how to build skills and capacity across philanthropy, sponsorship and crowdfunding?  This Toolkit takes a “how to” approach, and details the steps needed to grow and develop income streams from sources such as philanthropy, sponsorship, crowdfunding and new products.  Individual guides and fact sheets contain links to related information throughout the Toolkit, including successful case studies from around NSW. 

Welcome to the Create NSW Creating New Income: a toolkit to support creative practice. Here you’ll find guides and resources to help generate revenue for your creative practice. The Toolkit is tailored to creative practitioners and small to medium organisations.

We’ve taken a “how to” approach to each topic, showing the steps needed to grow and develop income streams from sources such as philanthropy, sponsorship, crowdfunding and new products.

Individual guides contain links to related information throughout the Toolkit and case studies of success from around NSW. Alongside each of our guides you’ll find links to further resources sourced from around the web to help kick-start your fundraising efforts.

Throughout the Toolkit you will find guides on a range of topics to inform and assist your revenue raising practices. These short clear guides can be dipped into as needed. The Toolkit is not designed to be read cover-to-cover.

Download the full Toolkit or dip into the individual guides that relate to your area of interest.

If you have any questions or comments on this toolkit, please email

NESTA has just released Funding Innovation: A practice guide. This guide shares the funding tools Nesta has used to support innovation and offers practical advice on how to make money work harder using a range of financial approaches, including stage-gate grants; matched funding grants; challenge prizes; impact investment etc.


The Arts Wellbeing Collective paired up with five Australian performing artists to create our Digital Shorts – bite sized videos on some of our most requested topics! These shorts are perfect for people curious to learn about promoting mental wellbeing in the performing arts; covering topics such as self care, supportive conversations, getting support and how to bring your learnings into the workplace.



Being Well Podcast: How to Build Habits with Charles Duhigg

We all want to build good habits, but doing so is often easier said than done. Charles Duhigg joins the podcast to help us learn how to do just that.  Charles is the author of The Power of Habita classic bestseller about the science of habit formation in our lives, companies and societies, andSmarter Faster Better, which focuses on the science of productivity. He was a reporter at the New York Times for a decade, where he was part of a team that won a  Pulitzer prize for explanatory reporting in 2013.


Screen Producers Australia (SPA) is proud to announce that we are now partnering with Virgin Australia to offer our Associate Members a generous 64kg of checked baggage per member when travelling domestically within Australia. This new partnership addresses the ongoing problems productions face when travelling with film equipment and represents yet another fantastic benefit of being a member of SPA


Your production could now travel with the following per member:

  • Laptop (2kg);
  • Block Battery (7.5kg);
  • 4K Camera (4.5kg);
  • Condenser Mic (850g);
  • Lens Kit (1.5kg);
  • Gimbal/Stabiliser (7kg);
  • Field Recorder (1.5kg);
  • Portable Boom (500g); and
  • Lighting Kit (20kg);

in addition to 19kg of your usual luggage!


  1. Book your domestic flight with Virgin Australia and note your booking reference number.
  2. Contact with your booking reference number and SPA membership number at least two (2) days prior to travel.
  3. For group bookings of ten (10) or more guests, please contact Group Sales on 13 67 00 or

TERMS AND CONDITIONS:  Maximum four (4) pieces of luggage per person. No one piece of baggage can weigh more than 32kg. Dimension limits also apply. Virgin Australia cannot guarantee that checked baggage or excess baggage will be uplifted as this is subject to aircraft loads. Not available on flights operated by partner airlines. Film Industry baggage allowance is subject to the Virgin Australia Conditions of Carriage. Read the full terms and conditions here.

Membership enquiries:  Brad Taylor  02 8076 5880

Give yourself the best chance of scoring the job of your dreams.

  • Know the industry, even before you start learning
  • Have a specialty, even if you’re a generalist
  • Be ruthless when choosing a school
  • Take big risks while you’re a junior and the stakes are small
  • And about that reel…Quality over quantity

Common Mistakes, Tips from Industry Pros and Action Steps

We all have that one friend or family member that will never understand why it’s so hard to get a job in the games industry. This person typically comes from a non-creative and equally boring industry like finance or sales. Or they might have that “know it all” persona that is harder to crack than a Nokia 3310.

No matter what you try, they simply can’t relate to the challenges of learning software, multiple coding languages, hardware debugging, competition from other artists and manuals that are thousands of pages long. Then there is that uneasy feeling that you don’t even know what you need to include in your portfolio. It’s not like you can just pass an exam and get a job like your annoying friend, you need to create a slick portfolio filled with projects to impress the ultimate final boss – The Recruiter.

The good news is that each of these challenges can be tackled with the right approach. In this email I’m going to highlight some of the most common mistakes that junior game artists make and also share some incredible tips from professional game artists.

To get help with this I reached out to Art Directors, Supervisors and Game Artists at Blizzard Entertainment, Monolith Productions, Ubisoft, Level Ex and NetherRealm Studios.

This is what they had to say, so take note and keep this content safe:

  • Applicants often forget to show their understanding of the pipeline. For instance, concept art that does not take camera, control, character into account, or a concept game design with an unrealistic scope.
  • Developers often don’t show the actual code used in a script.
  • Applicants always go for quantity over quality which is a terrible idea.
  • Applicants forget that their portfolio is only as good as the worst piece in it. If you don’t like a piece, don’t feel bad about removing it.
  • It’s obvious when no research has been done about a company, which means they don’t actually showcase work that is relevant to the company.
  • Junior artists make the mistake of creating something completely original and complex or making a grand scene. If you are making a prop/character make something that already has good reference and concept art.
  • If you are making an environment don’t make a whole level. Focus on making a small section of a scene and establish the mood.
  • They did the class assignments and that is it. You need additional work to stand out from your peers.
  • Have a downloadable PDF version of your resume, not just an image. Software that recruiters use cannot auto search images, they need text.
  • Never create a film like presentation “written and directed by…” nobody thinks that’s cool in the real world of recruiting and hiring.
  • Applicants with art fundamentals issues such as anatomy, perspective, colour, and lighting.
  • Find out what you want to do or which company you want to work for and tailor your portfolio to that discipline or company.
  • When it comes to the content in the portfolio, make sure to have interesting shots of the characters, props, or environments. Remember, you are making art!
  • Another thing to be aware of is to make art that you are passionate about. You’ll be putting a lot of effort and artistic effort into your day to day work. So pick something that you want to spend years developing.
  • The other common mistake is poor presentation. Good modeling and texture work combined with bad lighting or no lighting at all can ruin all the hard work that has been done.

Honestly, this is a small sample of what I received but I truly hope it helps you better understand the end game. You have a lot to learn, and you have a lot to prove when it comes time to apply for jobs. Make sure to keep these tips handy when it comes time to prove your friends wrong and smash that Nokia 3310 to pieces.

Your next steps
I know I’ve been rambling on about the struggle to learn game design and development but The Rookies is really passionate about helping people break into creative careers. So stop worrying about the people that don’t understand your challenges right now and stay focused on the end game. If you truly…

  1. Want to get a job in the games industry
  2. Want to learn the core skills for an entire games pipeline
  3. Need clear direction and support from professionals
  4. Can’t afford huge school fees or overpriced Udemy courses
  5. Want to go from absolute beginner to complete Game Artist

Then our Absolute Beginner to Game Artist course is right for you.

We are opening registrations on Sunday 22nd September. If you’re serious about getting a job and becoming a game artist, consider joining us.

Andrew McDonald, Co-Founder

SETH GODIN’S BUSINESS AND MARKETING PODCASTS OR BLOG Seth Godin is an Author, Entrepreneur and Most of All, A teacher.  Seth is an entrepreneur, best-selling author, and speaker. In addition to launching one of the most popular blogs in the world, he has written 18 best-selling books, including The Dip, Linchpin, Purple Cow, Tribes, and What To Do When It’s Your Turn (And It’s Always Your Turn).  Though renowned for his writing and speaking, Seth also founded two companies, Squidoo and Yoyodyne (acquired by Yahoo!).  By focusing on everything from effective marketing and leadership, to the spread of ideas and changing everything, Seth has been able to motivate and inspire countless people around the world.  In 2013, Seth was one of just three professionals inducted into the Direct Marketing Hall of Fame. In an astonishing turn of events, in May 2018, he was inducted into the Marketing Hall of Fame as well. He might be the only person in both.

How to Get 3D Animation Projects – Launching Your Career

Just starting your journey as a 3D Animator? Great! For film and game enthusiasts with a visual creative flair, this can be the logical career choice. It’s a highly competitive industry, so here are some strategies to get your first 3D animation projects and launch your career.

TSS #051: Use Anti-Goals to Stop Doing What You Hate

Four Lessons For Artists That YouTube Can’t Teach You

6 Practical Business Lessons For Freelance Artists

TWITTER BASICS for YOUR BUSINESS Webinar Australian Small Business Advisory Services

Career Advice – Working as a Game Environment Artist with Jonathan Hars




Use custom video templates to find the right story for your business.

How to use video to stay in touch with your customers

4 things you can do to support small businesses during the Coronavirus crisis

NFTs and the Film Industry: Making a Film as an NFT  –  non-fungible tokens 

From endorphins to indoor-phins: Fitness brands are using video to keep their communities moving


Heather Hale is a film and television director, screenwriter and producer with over 60 hours of credits. She’s currently producing the television talk show Lifestyle Magazine and has a full slate of projects in development.

Presenting Professionally

Today everyone is their own marketing department. While some artists easily excel in this, others would rather avoid it all together. Some could just use more help understanding the “Why, When, and How” of promoting your work and value.  It’s a relevant talking point among artists, fresh-faced and veteran alike, interested in creating their own brand, changing up pipeline positions, or selling a product — while wanting to avoid getting caught up in what can feel like a popularity contest.

Unblocking the Chain: Blockchain in TV and Film Production, Finance and Distribution – Exclusive White Paper

If you want to understand what blockchain is and how it can be used as a tool in the TV business, then this is the report for you.  Unblocking The Chain: Blockchain in TV and Film Production, Finance and Distribution explains in simple language how blockchain can streamline and automate the raising of capital, the collection of rights payments and the waterfall of cash from consumer to distributor back to creators and talent.

How movies make money: $100m+ Hollywood blockbusters

This is an article I have wanted to research and write for a long, long time. I finally had a moment to sit down and crunch the numbers – I hope it helps in the understanding of Hollywood economics.  It’s a lengthy one, so grab a cup of tea. While I understand why people fall for such over-simplifications, they have no real connection with how movies actually make money. Therefore, in an effort to demystify the film recoupment process I’m going to write a few articles looking at how movies make a profit.  In the coming weeks, I’ll look at movies with smaller budgets but let’s start with the big ones – Hollywood blockbusters.

5 Business Obstacles and Solutions

Australia has more than 2 million small businesses but did you know that Australian business failures increased by over 12% in the last financial year? There are a number of common challenges for new businesses that arise such as arranging funding to get started, choosing the right business, maintaining cash flow, standing out from competitors, finding and retaining customers, determining the right marketing strategies and handling budgets

With Half the World Online, Privacy is Probably Wishful Thinking

You send emails, grab photos on your smartphone, posts/images about everything on everything, buy stuff online, stream content to the closest screen and do it all at little or no cost.

About Elliott Advocacy — a nonprofit consumer advocacy organization

Elliott Advocacy is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit consumer advocacy organization that empowers consumers to solve their problems and helps those who can’t.  We do it through direct consumer advocacy, journalism on an ad-free website and maintaining the largest database of executive contact information on the Internet for consumers.  Here’s a little more information about our mission and our causes.  If you’re having trouble with a business — any business — and you’ve reached a dead end, we’ll try to help. Send our consumer advocacy team a request and we’ll investigate. Please read our frequently asked questions before getting in touch.

Career Advice – Working as a VFX Production Manager with Chelsea Mirus

Chelsea Mirus, a VFX Production Manager at Important Looking Pirates in Stockholm, Sweden, sits down with us to share her journey and advice to aspiring producers and artists looking for an exciting and challenging career like her own.

A Beginner’s Guide to the Art Industry

All 3D artists can pinpoint back the first time they ever used a 3D software, many can agree it is daunting at first. Weather you started in the days of LightWave or if you are starting now in the era of Maya, Max, Zbrush, etc – we all started because we wanted to create something or express ourselves.

I began my journey as a Character Artist back in 2015 at the Academy of Art University. And while I still have things to learn, I can share tips that have helped me establish myself as an artist.

19 reasons why you’re not getting a job in vfx, games or animation.

We all know it can be difficult to break into creative industries. Competition for jobs is global, junior talent is strong and every month more and more artists graduate and are competing for jobs. It’s not all doom and gloom though. There really are plenty of great jobs out there. The hard truth is that too many of you are making simple mistakes that can be avoided.  In this article I have highlighted some of the most common reasons why people don’t get offered jobs and miss out on opportunities that can change their lives.

9 Tips for Breaking Into the Games Industry and Impressing Recruiters

If you’re just starting out, or transitioning from another field, getting your foot in the door can be a tall order. Hopefully some insight found here might shine some light on what I’d consider “best practices.” Keep in mind these are just one person’s opinion, so your mileage may vary.

Jessica Giacco’s tips for applying to the Emerging Producer Placement

I applied for the EPP as I wanted to take that next step in furthering my career as an emerging producer. I wanted to learn about the process of funding through Create NSW and use my placement to expand my experience in the film industry.

Do Studios Hire Specialists or Generalists?

Specialist or Generalist? Read enough interviews with pro artists or studio recruiters and you’ll often see opposite opinions on which kind of hire is more valued by the VFX and games industries.  It’s no wonder that students are often confused about which path to take, which makes it harder to realistically prepare for that dream job at a major studio. It’s easy to fall into the trap of misunderstanding these commonly used terms.

Tips to confidently share your 3D work online

Putting your work out for the entire world to see is not easy, especially if you’re just getting started as an artist. 3D artists Mao Lin Liao and Gwen Frey discuss the pros, cons, and best practices when sharing your work online – and with confidence.


My personal argument: learn as much as you can. Knowledge is power and is always going to make you a better person and a better artist. The more information you have at your disposal to play with, the less limitations you have.

My professional is split. In one way you should not try to do everything. There is always a focus; that thing that you are passionate about. I, as an example, like texturing, lighting, and composting, but my main passion resides in sculpting and modeling. Focusing on one subject at a time is never a bad move unless you have the time to practice different fields. I believe it to be the most efficient way to excel at something. On the other hand, if you are a character artist and have absolutely no idea what rigging is or what it does, then I guarantee you are going to encounter some unpleasant problems along the road. If I were to give any advice, it would be to try to comprehend and learn as much as possible in other disciplines but focus mainly in what you really love to do.

HOW TO GET A JOB IN VFX with Feature Film VFX Artist Josh Parks

Packed with amazing information you won’t want to miss out on. Join Josh as he shares his secrets about how to get hired in the VFX industry, how to master your craft and answers your questions about his experiences as an artist working in feature film.  Josh’s most recent work includes films such as Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, Ready Player One, The Jungle Book, The Martian, and Wonder Woman.

How often are women hired in key film departments?

In the most recent issue of The Hollywood Reporter, they covered the efforts being made to increase the representation of women in below-the-line roles.  As part of this coverage, I was asked to crunch the data on the number of women working in specific film departments.  So I built a dataset of all feature films released in US cinemas over the past twenty years and sought to calculate the representation of women in below-the-line roles.  There is much more about my methodology in the Notes section at the end of this piece.

12 technologies that will disrupt business in 2018

Two quick ways to a job in VFX (and their pros and cons)

Are you a 3D graduate fresh out of school, with plenty of talent and ideas but no real work experience? The question most likely at the top of your mind: What’s the quickest way to get my foot in the door of the visual effects industry? We asked James Stone, the Asset Supervisor for Cinesite – the studio responsible for some of the awesome post production in Marvel’s latest film, Ant-Man & The Wasp.

  • 1. Lack of Artistic References  Kurt: I have found that a lot of artists start making environments, props and textures from their mind’s eye, without gathering reference. I like to spend some time researching the asset I am going to make, try to understand how it works, what parts are movable, and gather a lot of visual reference. Even if you think you might know what your prop looks like, doing these things allows you to capture the subtleties of a surface and make it feel more believable and realistic.
  • 2. Focusing on an Unimportant Aspect  Clinton: Artists naturally want to make sure every detail of every model, texture, and asset are perfect. Sometimes you’ll find that those crazy amounts of details are unnecessary and immediately lost when placed in the actual project or scene you are working on. It’s always best to block out your shapes and meshes first to know what will be used and where at. Knowing this will allow you to visually see how each asset is used and what are the most important details to account for and what to spend your time on.
  • 3. Underestimating the Scope or Scale of a Project  Clinton: Most artists have grand ideas of what they want to create or what they want to see in their work in their final results. These ideas are usually based on some kind of influence, whether it be from movies, games, or other visual art forms. It’s tough, but always keep in mind, especially when creating personal projects, that most of the visuals seen in games or other such media were created by larger teams over the course of many years. Realizing this can help you to understand what you are able to accomplish within a set timeline. I find a good rule of thumb, when it comes to personal projects, is to really zero in on what message you want to convey and how big or how many assets do you need to convey this message in your work. If you go in with a really loose idea you’ll often find you will quickly lose interest and feel overwhelmed by the amount of work required to finish the project.
  • 4. Failing to Show Your Progress  Clinton: Many new artists and veteran artists alike make this mistake! Show your work and progress online and to other artists and friends when possible. The more feedback you get from your work, the better result you have. Show works in progress even if you are not happy with where it is. Most times you’ll overcome these hurdles much easier with a few words of advice from the artistic community.
  • 5. Allowing Yourself to Plateau  Kurt: When making 3D art, it is easy to put your head down and continue making environments and props using the exact same workflows that you have become comfortable with. It is important to challenge yourself; try different techniques and programs to remain flexible and expand your skillset. If you always hand sculpt your tiling textures in Zbrush, try using Substance Designer to achieve a similar result, or vice versa. Forcing yourself outside your comfort zone will get you thinking of alternative ways to create art, and improve your problem-solving skills and ultimately improve your quality of work.


Hey, guys! If you don’t know me, my name is Paul H. Paulino and I recently started working in the VFX industry. I am a Texture Painter/Look Development artist at Scanline VFX in Vancouver, Canada and in the past year and a half I had the opportunity to work on projects such as Independence Day: Resurgence, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, Justice League, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 and Power Rangers.

Last year I began to write articles and tutorials sharing a bit of my experience and how I got here. If you have missed my past content, check thislink


Hey, guys! My name is Paul H. Paulino and I recently completed my first year working in the VFX industry. I am a Texture Painter/Look Development artist at Scanline VFX in Vancouver, Canada. In the past year I had the opportunity to work on big projects such as Independence Day: Resurgence, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, Justice League, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 and Power Rangers.

I thought it would be a good idea to share my personal “soft skills” which I learned throughout the past year at Scanline and I hope this may come useful for some of you. These tips might sound generic but I would have loved for someone to have shared this knowledge with me when I was starting my journey. Some people focus too much on the technical side of this industry and forget that it is also about working as a team.

Will Your Job Be Done By A Machine?

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EVENTBRITE:  Event Planning 101:  The Ultimate Toolkit for Successful Events

GLASS DOOR search salaries and compensation at thousands of companies. Find out if you’re paid fairly. Share your salary anonymously to help others.

Golden Rules of Game Development

Hollywood Salaries Revealed, From Movie Stars to Agents (and Even Their Assistants)

IBM’s Watson Supercomputer May Soon Be The Best Doctor In The World

Jungle update: Operation Sheena – female creative talent initiative

The long read  In-depth reporting, essays and profiles

Marketing:  Why agency relationships should never start with a wedding dress

Refold’s Portable Cardboard Standing Desk

6 Presentation “Tips” That Are Total BS  by

Student Filmmakers Magazine

3D Artist Salaries in Los Angeles, CA, US

Coworking spaces: building local businesses

Are you running your business from the kitchen table at home, or trying to get some work done and sick of being constantly interrupted by the family popping in and out of the study? Perhaps you’re spending too much on coffee at the local café while you’re seated there from 9 to 5? Enter, co-working spaces.

3D will make retailers a lot of money (if they can solve these 3 problems)

You’ve heard it before: 3D technology has the potential to completely remake the shopping experience. Yet at this point, most people likely don’t even realize they have a 3D-ready tool right in their pocket.

Five Ways to Nurture a Sense of Self

From respecting your morning routine to the value of playfulness, creatives offer insights on the importance of nourishing your whole self.


Hey, guys! My name is Paul H. Paulino, and I am a Texture Painter/Look Development artist at Scanline VFX in Vancouver, Canada and I recently wrote an article talking about my first year in VFX industry. After the article was published, I was amazed to see so many positive reviews and feedback.

I realize that most of the students who are trying to break into visual effects are still a bit uncertain whether they are prepared enough for the industry. Not long ago when I was a student, I remember having the same feeling.
That’s why I decided to write a series of articles talking about some specific topics that might help prepare you for your vfx career, such as organization, problem-solving, networking, time management, etc. Like I said in the previous article, I still have a lot to learn, so keep this in mind while reading. This is just an opinion from my own experience.

How to win, manage and keep clients as a freelance 3D artist

Don’t let them forget about you.  My process to get clients is the same as it was from day one. I have a network of people who I’ve worked with in the past that recommend me to people they know. Most of the work that I get comes from word of mouth.

*Extrapolating from where we are today and not including any major technological breakthroughs.  The landscape of the video industry has changed dramatically in the last ten years, new cameras, new formats, new markets and new channels have changed the way we create and consume video. We have seen the transition from Standard Definition to High Definition and then to 4K, the number of TV channels has risen exponentially and the ability to stream content to TV’s, computers and mobile devices means we can consume video almost anywhere.

How To Use Brands And Products In Film

You plan on submitting your film to festivals, get picked up for distribution, put it on YouTube, or making it available to rent or download from your own website. You don’t want to break any trademark laws or be rejected or get a cease and desist notice and you don’t have the budget to spend thousands of dollars blurring out the logos in those scenes. You write to the companies that own the trademarks begging for sponsorship or product placement. But not only are you denied, these companies demand that their brands and products be cut from all scenes.

How to Stick to a Schedule When You Work From Home

Remote work is common these days — whether your company offers telecommuting as a benefit or you’re striking out on your own as a freelancer. It seems like a great perk, but it can also remove the structure that holds your days together. Before you know it, it’s 4 p.m., you’re still in your pajamas and you haven’t eaten lunch … let alone seen the outside world.

Work is the master of the modern world. For most people, it is impossible to imagine society without it. It dominates and pervades everyday life – especially in Britain and the US – more completely than at any time in recent history. An obsession with employability runs through education. Even severely disabled welfare claimants are required to be work-seekers. Corporate superstars show off their epic work schedules. “Hard-working families” are idealised by politicians. Friends pitch each other business ideas. Tech companies persuade their employees that round-the-clock work is play. Gig economy companies claim that round-the-clock work is freedom. Workers commute further, strike less, retire later. Digital technology lets work invade leisure.

iShindler  INSIGHTS & PERSPECTIVES FOR CREATIVE & TECHNOLOGY BUSINESSES  iShindler advises clients in the entertainment and entertainment technology space on a wide range of business matters.  These include business and strategic planning, growth strategies, operational and organizational reviews, and trends in the marketplace impacting their businesses now and into the future.  CEO Marty Shindler is a sought after speaker at many industry conferences and corporate events on a variety of  forward thinking topics.  We are proud of our record of strong, responsive service.  Contact us to determine how our services can contribute to your success.

Interview with Lois Randall:  embracing diversity in film making.  An Arts Manager and Screen Producer with over 20 years of industry experience working at national, state and regional levels. Randall recently produced a short film, Nan and a Whole Lot of Trouble, which had a strong female story, crew and cast. We caught up with her to talk about producing the film and asked for her thoughts on developing more strong female practitioners, characters and stories.

Candy Bowers: Ability is of little account without opportunity – Lucille Ball:  An award winning writer, hip hop artist, educator, director, arts worker, theatre maker and social activist. This month she wrote a powerful article Junkee calling for more diversity in the screen industry. We caught up with her for thoughts on the positive announcements over the last few weeks.

Mona Chalabi on Statistical Stand-up, Play-Doh, and the Secret Language of Colors

The prolific illustrator and data editor tells stories in colorful visuals that aim to make journalism more accessible to everyone.  With the power of an Olympic skater owning a gold medal routine, illustrator and data journalist Mona Chalabi took the 2018 99U Conference stage by storm with her visualizations on testicle size and hangover cures. We sat down for a longer conversation with the self-proclaimed TMI Queen about her journey beyond the halls of academia, the future of data journalism, and the likelihood that you’ll regret any tattoo she gives you.

Stephanie Yung: From Fertility to Identity, Design Can Dismantle Isolation

Stress can have a major negative effect on a fertility experience. With that in mind, Smart’s Director of Design wondered, why is the fertility process such a lonely mess—especially for a single parent?   Smart’s Director of Design, Stephanie Yung gave a standout talk at the 99U Conference this year about her process of turning the experience navigating the fertility process into an app. Smart Design has long been a proponent of the idea of “design for one”—which zeroes in one a single user’s specific needs versus that of a large audience. This time, Yung turned the design for one process on herself to track the triumphs and adversities of fertility as a single parent.

Put your wisdom to work

If you’re thinking about starting a business or rejuvenating one you’re in, I’m here to assist. I’ve specialised in this area for nearly three decades, latterly as the founder of Flying Solo, an online community I sold in 2017. Today I’ve returned to where it all began, helping individuals transfer their skills into rewarding, fulfilling and enjoyable creative enterprises.

The latest two episodes of Brown Riot podcast have dropped, just in time for your Christmas listening pleasure.

The podcast is produced by Smith & Western and hosted by Coffee Cocoa Gunpowder Creative Partner Ant Melder. In episode seven, he talks to CEO of Pluto Media and champion of Indigenous creativity, Peter Kirk (feature image). In episode eight, he talks to the Digital Commercial Manager of Fox Sports, Debs Majumdar.

15 Critical Habits Of Mentally Strong People

We all reach critical points in our lives where our mental toughness is tested. It might be a toxic friend or colleague, a dead-end job, or a struggling relationship. Whatever the challenge, you have to be strong, see things through a new lens, and take decisive action if you want to move through it successfully.


Mind mapping is a highly effective way of getting information in and out of your brain. Mind mapping is a creative and logical means of note-taking and note-making that literally “maps out” your ideas.

Use keywords and short phrases, can use colour images and symbols.  Draw branches that connect to the key word, everything is connected and use curved lines.

Five Best Mind Mapping Tools

Mind mapping is a way to brainstorm, make a plan, or turn ideas into the steps needed to make them happen. There are plenty of great tools out there to help you build, organise and share mind maps. Here’s a look at five of the best, based on your nominations.

“Stage 32 is Meets LinkedIn For Film, Television And Theater Creatives.” — Forbes is a place to discuss, share content and offer advice and tips on anything and everything related to the craft and business of film, television and theater. With tens of thousands of discussions, all searchable through the search bar above, the Stage 32 Lounge is active, lively and essential.

HOW TO SAVE MONEY FOR TRAVEL and YOU DON’T NEED TO STOP DRINKING $5 COFFEES!  The real problem we encounter when trying to save up money for travel isn’t actually our inability to save — it’s how good we are at spending.

DIGITAL HABITS YOU MIGHT NOT KNOW YOU HAVE  In a digital world it can be hard to step back, unwind, and get some digital downtime. Living in a digital world, only 22% of people believe that they spend too much time on their digital devices – so what’s “too much” and which habits do we have?

CLEAR YOUR MIND AND GET ON TRACK  We all need a little time away from the hustle and bustle and it’s important to take time to relax and reset so you can get the most out of life.  These apps are not suggested as a replacement for professional advice however they may help to support and guide you through daily hurdles you may encounter. If you’re looking for support and someone to talk to, there are a number of organisations who you can contact listed on the Health Direct website.

WANT TO GET A TECH COMPANY JOB AFTER 50?  Here’s what I learned working at Google and Twitter.

I stumbled into the world of technology in the ‘80s and have embraced it ever since, including almost a decade at Google and recently nearly five years at Twitter. When I got into tech, I could learn on the job, because no one back then was much of an expert. But as the industry grew up around me and waves of innovation have taken root, many younger companies have emerged, and most start out wanting skills largely associated with younger people. Here’s my best advice on dealing with reality and also being successful later in your career.

The Arts Wellbeing Collective is an Arts Centre Melbourne initiative, delivered in partnership with Entertainment

Assist. The Arts Wellbeing Collective comprises a consortium of Victorian arts and cultural organisations whose shared vision is to effect better mental health and wellbeing for Victorian performing arts workers

Organise your home office  According to the 2016 Census, 431,000 workers (that’s 4.1% of Australians!) work from home. This number has increased by 67,000 since 2011 and a whopping 99,000 since 2006.  Whether they work from home or not, many Aussies have a home office. It may not be where you work day to day but it can be utilised as a space for sorting through finances, keeping important documents, or getting arty and crafty.

Top tips to start or grow your own business.  Australia is a nation of small businesses. In fact, nine out ten of Aussie businesses are small businesses, employing over 40% of our nation’s workforce.  If you’re thinking of starting up a small business and have a business plan ready to put into action, or you already have a small business you’re looking to grow, our business team have put together these handy hints and links.


Save your clients from paperwork This secure Aussie innovation enables your organisations to digitally source documents and remove hurdles for clients.
Automate on boarding. Stop chasing documents. Get more time. Do more business. Help more people.

  • Save clients from paperwork  |  Use UploadOnce to collate documents for clients.
    Give clients a simple, hassle-free sales experience.
  • Finalise applications faster  |  Use UploadOnce sourced documents to populate forms.
    Complete application forms right the first time for clients.
  • Do better business.  |  Always have access to information to help your clients.
    Be the hero. Help more people, faster.
  • Win new business.  Win new markets  |  Make referral and repeat business seamless.
    Use technology to work smarter with business partners and clients.


Cassie Lee Language Services can provide high quality, timely and affordable services with a special expertise in legal translations and interpreting, by a NAATI accredited professional translator and interpreter who is also an experienced lawyer.  Professional Korean translator or interpreter who can provide first class language services at a reasonable cost?

Producer’s Reps – A Warning  Film Festival Secrets

Director Mike Dorsey (Dearly Departed, Vol 1) posted this message to the WAB message boards and I just had to reprint it here (with permission). It’s an amazing peek into the other side of the world of (some) producer’s reps.

A former Navy SEAL’s advice for tough times: Embrace the suck.  LinkedIn Article

There’s Gold Within the Muck.  We have a saying in the SEAL teams: “It pays to be a winner.” True enough, but one of the secrets to winning is embracing failures, obstacles, and losses. We have another saying: “The best ideas come from the worst places.” Most outrageously successful business ideas are born out of the experience of failure, sometimes even bitter failure. The pain is temporary; the learning is priceless.

Total Focus: Make Better Decisions Under Pressure – August 15, 2017  by Brandon Webb (Author), John David Mann (Author)


Do you struggle to give concise answers to interview questions? Are you unsure how to share your accomplishments during an interview without sounding boastful?  The STAR interview response technique can help. Using this method of answering interview questions lets you provide concrete examples or proof that you possess the experience and skills for the job at hand.  STAR stands for Situation, Task, Action, Result.

BSI submits feature film scripts and broadcast series to Investors, Studios, Networks and Cable Stations.

Along with offering beginning to end professional writing, script polish, and editing services, development of Producers Packages, and film & TV production services (concept videos, TV series, full length feature films, pilots, and trailers.

Investor of Independent films, speaks openly about funding films and getting projects produced…

The 9 Ways to Finance an Independent Film

A lot of Filmmakers are only concerned with finding investors for their projects. While films require money to be made well, there’s are better ways to find that money than convincing a rich person to part with a few hundred thousand dollars. Even if you are able to get an angel investor (or a few ) on board, it’s often not in your best interest to raise your budget solely from private equity, as the more you raise the less likely it is you’ll ever see money from the back end of your project.

Getting savvy with your tax management

The new tax year is upon us. Being on the go with a busy lifestyle can make it hard to keep on top of everything you want to claim each financial year. Often this means that when it comes to tax time you find yourself scrabbling to find a years’ worth of receipts to get your tax info in order.

The Not so Fun Stuff:  Getting your life in order. iiNet eNewsletter Posted on 

Have you ever thought about death? You’d be forgiven if you haven’t – it’s a scary thought, after all. It’s not an easy subject to bring up in conversation, yet they say the only true certainties in life are death and taxes, so it has to come up eventually. As a society, we’d often rather put off having a proper talk about ‘the end’ with our loved ones until another day, but the problem with that is that it could happen at any time. It’s far more responsible to get your affairs in order sooner rather than later to prevent any unnecessary pain for your loved ones.

Why Network?
As the saying goes, it’s not what you know, but who you get to know!! Networking is such an important part of growing your business, and it’s so often misunderstood. It’s not always about selling on the spot, but instead building long-term relationships so that people think of you when they next have the need for your products. Remember, people buy from people they like – relationships are key!

7 Networking Tips:
  1. Set yourself some goals – e.g. hand out 10 business cards
  2. Plan some ice-breakers ahead of time
  3. Set yourself a time limit for each interaction & practice your exit strategies
  4. Ask for an introduction from our Business Advisors
  5. Practice empathetic listening & share personal stories
  6. Don’t try to sell – just relax and get to know people!
  7. Rehearse your pitch before the event


  • Establish Your Event Identity
  • Before the Event
  • During the Event
  • After the Event

LOCAL WEB YouTube Channel


If you want to start a business, you’ll need to think carefully about your business idea. Is it a great idea that could turn into a major brand or will it fall flat at the start line? The team at MOO.COM have created this interactive flowchart to put your business idea to the test!


A unique organisation in Brisbane – commenced 1974 – powered almost entirely by volunteers and a remarkable team of presenters from Brisbane and visiting from overseas and interstate.  We’re here to show participants:

  1. How we can use our remarkable minds to bring beneficial changes in our lives.
  2. How by using a range of ideas and techniques we can reduce stress, anxiety and improve physical and mental issues.
  3. Just how powerful the effects of right attitudes can be and how all too often our lives can be controlled and made more difficult because of unconscious conditions.


Today, Screen Producers Australia (‘SPA’) released the inaugural Screen Production in Australia report. SPA engaged Deloitte Access Economics to undertake a study unto the current state of the independent film and television sector in Australia and the key issues it is facing.


Investor of Independent films, gives details of what he and other investors want to see


Our survey roughly coincides with the 10-year anniversary of the introduction of the Producer Offset and the results form part of a report that goes up online today.

This report steps back and gives a sense of how the financial incentive is performing.

  • It includes data on how much film and television has used the offset and how production levels compared before and after its introduction
  • It also digs into user sentiment; the users being producers as well as broadcasters and other platforms. This was done both via the survey and in face to face interviews.

TECHBOARD is a community engagement & discovery platform for the Australian Startup and Young Technology company scene:

CHARLIE’S  is open for business. Your business:  is the hub for the Australian screen practitioners in Los Angeles, offering a unique creative workspace for conducting business, collaborating and networking.  Managed by Australians in Film (AiF), is located within the historic Raleigh Studios, the oldest working lot in Hollywood, where Charlie Chaplin and Douglas Fairbanks made films and frequently played cards. Screen NSW has access to two hot desks at Charlie’s. Any NSW based creative who is visiting LA for professional development or screen industry related business, can apply for access to one or two Screen NSW hot desks, free of charge.  For more information about this opportunity visit:


  • asana tracks projects from start to finish
  • kanban flow  gives you an excellent overview of your current work situation.  Visualizing work in a team environment simplifies communication and leads to improved productivity.
  • troll lets you work more collaboratively and get more done
  • my price


Another idea:
  • Question on one side
  • Answer on the other side
  • Use 5 boxes or bundles, starting with #1 that you do not know through to #5 that you securely have learned and can use pictures.  When you get it right promote the card.  Do the #1 bundle or box everyday, #2 every 3 days, #3 every 5 days, #4 every week and #5 monthly.



Making an independent film is like starting a company from the ground up: you’re creating a brand, operating a business and selling a product or service. You will address issues such as raising capital, hiring talent, marketing and distribution, including, States’ Blue Sky and Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) laws, rules and regulations related to fundraising.

Gender Matters

Rules for Development (of People)

How Much Everyone Working On a $200 Million Movie Earns | Vanity Fair

Changing Education Paradigms

Nobody Tells This To Beginners

“I’m Doing Work”

Watch People in Other Industries React Hilariously to Being Asked for Free Spec Work  Advertising, we have a problem 

Thoughts on the Creative Career

Arnold Schwarzenegger – Mindset of a champion

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Artists



What Really Separates World-Class Performers From Everybody Else

How come? Because the book tackles deep questions, such as: Why are some people – Warren Buffett, Yo-Yo Ma, Chris Rock – so incredibly accomplished at what they do, while millions of others in those same fields never rise above mediocrity? Why are some people so extraordinarily creative and innovative? Why can some continue to perform astoundingly at ages when conventional wisdom says it’s impossible?

‘Outliers’ Malcolm Gladwell 

Malcolm Gladwell takes us on an intellectual journey through the world of “outliers”–the best and the brightest, the most famous and the most successful. He asks the question: what makes high-achievers different?  His answer is that we pay too much attention to what successful people are like, and too little attention to where they are from: that is, their culture, their family, their generation, and the idiosyncratic experiences of their upbringing. Along the way he explains the secrets of software billionaires, what it takes to be a great soccer player, why Asians are good at math, and what made the Beatles the greatest rock band.

Malcolm Gladwell looks at everyone from rock stars to professional athletes, software billionaires to scientific geniuses, to show that the story of success is far more surprising, than we could ever have imagined. He reveals that it’s as much about where we’re from and what we do, as who we are – and that no one, not even a genius, ever makes it alone.

‘Drive:  The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us’  Daniel H. Pink

How can you hire highly skilled workers, persuade them to work for free, and then release your product to the masses for free? It’s not impossible; in fact, several active companies such as Linux and Wikipedia has accomplished this feat. In this video, the Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures, and Commerce gives a comprehensive animated seminar on what motivates workers to work, and how to take advantage of that as a business. This video, which is animated entirely on a whiteboard, is extremely valuable, especially for those marketing and sales professionals. The animation is clean, clever, and imaginative, and illustrates the various studies and research used in this piece extremely well.



The Arts Wellbeing Collective an Arts Centre Melbourne initiative that comprises a consortium of arts and cultural organisations working together to promote positive mental health and wellbeing in the performing arts.

Support Act Wellbeing Helpline

1800 959 500

As part of the Arts Wellbeing Collective suite of programs, Arts Centre Melbourne has partnered with Support Act, a registered charity supporting those that work in the music industry, to pilot a sector-wide Wellbeing Helpline, staffed by clinicians with an understanding of the unique challenges of the performing arts industry.

Looking after your mental health during COVID-19

COVID-19 is creating uncertainty across many communities and industries. The performing arts and live event sectors have been greatly impacted.  During these uncertain times, we are going to need strength and connection to get through. It’s hard to know where to start – especially when everything is changing so quickly – so let’s keep it simple.

Get Help

If you or someone you know is at immediate risk, please contact the Emergency Services on 000.

Support Act Wellbeing Helpline 1800 959 500

Free, confidential phone counselling service(opens in new window) available 24/7 for anyone who works in the performing arts industry. Call now to make an appointment, or request to speak to someone immediately about any aspect of your mental health and wellbeing.

Lifeline 13 11 14


Fair Work Australia

QUICK STATS  QuickStats makes high level, at a glance Census data available for most areas, from small areas to state, territory and Australia level.

ATO Occupation and industry specific guides

WORK EXPERIENCE & INTERNSHIPS Unpaid work experience, job placements and internships that are not vocational placements will be unlawful if the person is in an employment relationship with the business or organisation they are doing the work for.


Media production and education services for Film & TV from Joe Nasr

BAYSIDE BEC, Business Enterprise Centre

Helping Small Business With Their Digital Needs

Hundreds of presentations are given daily, yet rarely do they inspire or enable us to connect with presentation expert Emma Bannister. Audiences are increasingly time poor and picky about what they want to see and hear. Emma will share how to connect and influence your audience with every presentation; you will learn: The essential ingredients for a successful presentation Insights into market leader’s presentation strategies The best software and online tools to use Tips and tricks to make your presentation connect How to visualise data And more!





Digital Marketing for Small Business


The Center for Evolutionary Learning is a non profit global research network specialized in the study of how individuals and organizations learn to evolve towards ideal models of responsibility and sustainability in their identity and behaviour.  We envision a world where self-empowered individuals generate enlightened decisions, practices and initiatives within their organizations, for the benefit of all concerned stakeholders: financial investors, employees, business partners and communities.  Our aim is thus to contribute to the sustainable development of communities worldwide, by identifying the most effective learning approaches to improve personal development processes in entrepreneurs, managers and employees, working in private, social or public organizations.

The Evolutionary Leap to Flourishing Individuals and Organisations.  This book describes how this shift in mindset and consciousness level can, and has indeed, taken place in organizations using meditative practice, not only for individual wellbeing (which is now well understood) but also for deep transformational change. Through this shift, we can move past a definition of sustainability as ‘mere resource efficiency and long-term survival’, to one of ‘sustainability-as-flourishing’. This book challenges many pre-conceived ideas about what a sustainably successful organization is and how it should be run. Based on a growing body of evidence – from neuroscience to business research – it maps out a path to empower all who wish to undertake this journey towards the realization of the highest potential in ourselves, our organizations, and our social and natural world.


The Industry Code has been compiled by SPA with reference to the Live Performance Australia Code of Practice and related documents, Screen Australia’s Code of Conduct and the draft code released by SPA and MEAA in late 2017.

The documents released for consultation are:


In practice, this will mean that all people working on a production will need to be made aware of the Code and producers will be required to nominate a trained staff member to be a Sexual Harassment Prevention Contact to address any harassment complaints. Producers will be required to submit a Code Compliance Report at the conclusion of production, in the form of a statutory declaration, confirming all Code obligations were met.  Producer is required to submit a Code Compliance Report –  failure to do so will be considered a breach of contract and the final Screen Australia payment on a production will be withheld (typically this represents 5% of the Screen Australia funding).

GENDER MATTERS TASKFORCE STATEMENT ON SEXUAL HARASSMENT  Screen Australia has published a factsheet for people who believe they may have been sexually harassed at work.

SCREEN PRODUCERS ASSOCIATION (SPA) and MEDIA ENTERTAINMENT and ARTS ALLIANCE (MEAA) announce the release of draft policies relating to workplace bullying, investigations and discrimination and harassment.



TAFE NSW Harassment & Bullying video – Student


Under the provisions of the Copyright act 1969, a copyright owner is entitled to take legal action against an institution or individual who infringes copyright.  Under the Act, you are permitted to make a copy for the purpose of research or study.  This is called fair dealing for the purpose of research or study.

acclogoAUSTRALIAN  COPYRIGHT  COUNCIL  Do I Need Permission.  The Australian Copyright Council is an independent, non-profit organisation. Founded in 1968, we represent the peak bodies for professional artists and content creators working in Australia’s creative industries and Australia’s major copyright collecting societies.   2023 Webinar Series


Copyright at American University

This guide is to provide a basic understanding of copyright laws including important exemptions that apply to the American University community.

Creativity that counts: who owns the art created by collaborative efforts?


Applying Fair-Go Principles to Filmmaking

Nothing Beats the Real Thing

SMARTCOPYIN the official guide to copyright issues for Australian Schools and TAFE



The Learning Engine series of videos introduces the Copyright Office and copyright concepts to viewers who are new to these topics or who want to learn more. We will add more videos in the future here and to our YouTube channel as we create them. Subscribe to the channel to be notified when new videos are available.

Frequently Asked Questions about Copyright

The United States Copyright Office and the position of Register of Copyrights were created by Congress in 1897. The Register directs the Copyright Office as a separate federal department within the Library of Congress, under the general oversight of the Librarian, pursuant to specific statutory authorities set forth in the United States Copyright Act. Earlier in the nation’s history, from 1870 to 1896, the Librarian of Congress administered copyright registration (at that time mostly books) directly, and earlier still, from 1790 to 1896, U.S. district courts were responsible for doing so. Today, the Copyright Office is responsible for administering a complex and dynamic set of laws, which include registration, the recordation of title and licenses, a number of statutory licensing provisions, and other aspects of the 1976 Copyright Act and the 1998 Digital Millennium Copyright Act. By statute, the Register of Copyrights is the principal advisor to Congress on national and international copyright matters, testifying upon request and providing ongoing leadership and impartial expertise on copyright law and policy.

Why Batman and Rhapsody in Blue should be in the public domain, but aren’t

In 1998, if Congress hadn’t extended copyrights by 20 years, George Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue, Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises and Margaret Mitchell’s Gone with the Wind would all be in the public domain. This year, the comic book characters Superman and Batman would be free to use by anyone. Meanwhile, movies from 1940 – like Charlie Chaplin’s The Great Dictator and John Ford’s The Grapes of Wrath – would have been slated to enter the public domain at the end of 2015.

YouTube Copyright Basics


If you are in NSW, you can access the NSW BUSINESS CONNECT program, which is funded by NSW Treasury. It allows you to have four initial hours of free business advice and mentoring from our team of experts, with subsidised meetings after that, as well as access to more of our free online workshops.

Click here and search for advisors working with CREATIVE PLUS. Their names are Kylie, Kelly, Andrew, Robyn and Pauline.

Join us for DOYENNE DRINKIES every Friday afternoon.  The first one is Friday 3rd April at 4:30pm for a half hour of chit chat, creative business questions, and wine time. See you there!


We provide training, business advisory, online programs, resources and content to help you find self-employed success in your creative field. You might be a solo freelancer, a pair of arts entrepreneurs, a creative company or a not-for-profit organisation. You might just be thinking about making the move from hobbyist to professional. Maybe you’re just curious!

Welcome to The Art of Content, which provides a little peek into our world.  We talk about interesting facets of the content marketing world and we also chat to people we know and respect who have some unique perspectives.

In CREATIVE + BUSINESS ‘S AdHoc December 2019 | How to Make Maps they have included the following information:

FYI: Changes to Wave Accounting

We’d like to let you know about some changes to Wave, a cloud accounting software we have frequently recommended to clients in the past. Wave has announced that as of 1 January 2020, bank connections will not be available for customers outside of the US and Canada. This is a very disappointing change, especially considering that we have recommended the software to many of our clients. You can read more about why Wave has made this decision here:

Since hearing about this change, we have been searching for a suitable alternative to recommend to our clients, and came across Rounded – a cloud accounting software created by creative freelancers, for creative freelancers. Refreshing, huh?! You can find out more about Rounded here:

Unfortunately it does not have a free tier, but it is a low-cost option that is both intuitive and easy to use. To soften the blow of having to pay for the service, the fabulous folk at Rounded have given us a referral link which enables a one month free trial (their usual trial period is 14 days), and they will also migrate all data from WAVE into Rounded for free. The referral link is

Disclaimer: we receive no kickback for recommending Rounded to our clients, we just think it’s a pretty rad software option and thought we’d share it with you.

NSW Business ConnectResourcesBe Creative, Make Money.  Love Your Work


If you’d like to watch any of our other free webinars, including the ones about LinkedInMulti-Hat Marketing and Diversification of Income, you can find them all here:

We encourage you to sign up to our channel so you’ll be notified of any other free webinars and workshops that we deliver in the future.




  • Making and setting personal and professional goals and planning your business journey.  Setting goals can be extremely difficult, because it requires an answer to that vexing age-old question “What do you want?”. And once, they’re set, how do we keep them? And what about all those other deadlines?
  • Creating a practical way to effectively continue to make and realise your dreams and goals.
  • Understanding and handling money matters;
  • The key to managing time better, more effectively. better ways to meet your deadlines.  Practical strategies to help you keep all the juggling balls in the air.  the larger issues of setting goals, staying motivated, saying “NO” and finding the balance between being creative and making money.  the larger issues of setting goals, staying motivated, saying “NO” and finding the balance between being creative and making money;
  • Introduction to creative tax and legal resources;
  • Marketing tips and juggling the realities of combining art and business.


Content Creates Community –  Brook McCarthy, business coach and digital marketer extraordinaire, shares here how to make and curate content to create your community.

  • The strategy behind content marketing
  • Writing your bio and introducing yourself without sounding like a wanker
  • Crafting clickable headlines, for social media and email
  • Defining your difference – Making your mark
  • And then the specifics – instagram, Facebook, Blogging and Email.

IT’S OK TO PIVOT AND IT’S OK TO STOP Mellow Brick Road, PodCast Robert Gerrish with Monica Davidson

We conclude by looking at how the creative industries are perceived and how artificial intelligence and other forces are likely to impact in the future. We both agree – hopefully not too naively – that as creatives are constantly working in the ‘problem solving’ space, we surely will not be replaced by technology any day too soon. Surely.

PDF – Wellbeing and You

We at Creative Plus Business are always thinking about the mental health and wellbeing of ourselves, each other, and our clients. Our advisor Irene has out together ten resources that will help you to navigate your own wellness, available through the link below. Enjoy!


On the 2 June as part of Vivid Ideas at the Museum of Contemporary Art the Department of Industry NSW Supporting business and Creative + Business presented THE LONG HAUL, through freelancing and self employment.

Penny Cook – first recurring TV role in ‘The Restless Years’ in 1979.  Griffin Theatre Company and Monkey Baa Theatre Company

Griffin Theatre Company,  who are passionate about theatre that’s written by Australians, about Australians, for Australians to enjoyand Monkey Baa, children’s theatre

John Birmingham – published ‘He Died With A Falafel in His Hand’ in 1994

Bridget Ikin – produced ‘An Angel At My Table’ in 1990  FELIX MEDIA

Sarah Carroll  – performed at her first music festival in 1992

Gathered to speak about what it take to survive and thrive in the creative industries for more than 25 years? Meet four luminaries who have endured in professions that leave most people behind.

They represented the creative pillars of publishing, screen, music and performing arts, these accomplished professionals have sustained themselves without a break. They’ve juggled career highs and lows, maintained their personal lives while working in the arts (sometimes while in the spotlight), and evolved and adapted their vocations to the changing times.

What were the challenges they have overcome, the twists and turns they have navigated and the opportunities they have taken to become stayers in their fields. What would they share with their younger selves if they could? What do they wish they’d done differently? What was their greatest achievement? And finally – how exactly do they do it?

My favourite slide from the event. Penny Cook speaking about the need for and use of gumption during the life of a freelancer.

What does it take to survive the long haul, survive the creative industry?

  • Are you a self starter, initiative, manipulate the system, can do it, lateral thinking
  • The Art of Coffee
  • Ability to change focus
  • The ability to be flexible and go with the flow, opportunities to change, grow and expand.
  • A very big adventure, still unfolding, long unfolding, ever surprising and unexpected
  • Balance family, personal needs, creative desires, financial anxieties
  • Business relationships more on, technology changes, needs change, situations change, disruption
  • Challenges along the way
  • Collaborating
  • Cultural pathfinder, wanting to make a difference, opportunity to make a difference
  • Do what I am doing now to the best of my ability, the seed of the next thing even if do not know what it is, is contained in the now
  • Do not give up, spirited, initiative, resourceful, try hard, work your guts out
  • Do not have control over everything
  • Do we need an interesting business name or an obvious one
  • Does not hurt to ask, you never know.
  • Do the best you can. 
  • How do you see the world, looking out
  • How important the people in your life are with what you do, encouraging, not possible without the support of those around you, significant people
  • If someone asks you to do something, what could go wrong, say yes, have a go and amaze yourself.
  • Is it about how you pick it up, yourself up, is it about how hare you work
  • Large, small, easy, challenging, stay focused, having fun, burden, anxiety, age, choice, pride,
  • Lead by enclosing and bring people with you.
  • Life sometimes gets in the way of our goals, commitments and desires, changes
  • Mentor, lucky coincidence, put yourself in positions where this can happen,
  • May not know how long a project will take, the winds of change, quality of the work
  • Never know when you may need what there is the opportunity at a moment to learn
  • Need to change, adapt, refocus which can be a new opportunity
  • Other people do not always meet our expectations
  • Others may run with the ideas, initiatives
  • Open to new adventures and was to challenge yourself
  • Opportunities can lead to other opportunities, reputation opens doors, help each other
  • People are natural story tellers, not in front of a screen
  • People have different skills, people do different things well and better than others
  • The relationships on the journey and working with people.
  • Step out of your comfort zone.  
  • Take interested in new things, put yourself out there to do them
  • Take the bus not the car, be amongst people to be curious and open to what is around you
  • Things go wrong, especially at the last minute
  • Take on board the need to have a clear idea of where you want to go, what the end result is or at least the next stage of your journey, does not matter if you change your mind as long as you have a goal or a destination for your business ship.  Build a solid ship that withstand just about anything and figure out where you want to go, at least the next stage of your journey.
  • There is not any one solution or any one way to navigate the journey, longevity and here are some points from the speakers:
  • When is the time to let go, pass onto someone else
  • What happens when it goes wrong, change your mind, do your own thing
  • We never know it all and need to have a strong commitment to hang in there with the courage of your conviction, for as long you need to, to get through the rollercoaster.  The roller coaster your experiencing is completely normal.
  • Will be tough times, tough sticking with it, adapt, move quickly, a few steps ahead

Self publishing journey – Let’s Get Digital by David Gaughran  How To Self-Publish And Why You Should 


Digital Ready

Digital Business Kit for the Arts, Recreation & Education sector

Do Creative Businesses Need A Business Plan?

Digital Ready | Introduction


Some things to consider:

  • what responsibilities were
  • the type of work
  • what exposed to
  • what doing in downtime
  • other interests only if relevant e.g. photography
  • brief overview of the project
  • details of what you did on each shot e.g. Nuke to clean plates, comp shots to what skill level, green screen, 3D integration
  • deliver to senior requirements
  • flexible and adaptable
  • corporative
  • time management
  • taking direction
  • taking notes
  • comment on show reel such as what you would do differently, change
  • cv
  • portfolio
  • vimeo link to work
  • why applying to this company and would it be a good fit
  • contact details


AIRTASKER   is a trusted community marketplace for you to outsource your tasks on

ART STATION is the showcase platform for games, film, media & entertainment artists. It enables artists to showcase their portfolios in a slick way, discover & stay inspired, and connect with new opportunities.


CARBON MADE  Search 1,000,000 portfolios and 2 million projects.

CONKERBERRY PTY LTD  We are a small and efficient Recruitment company specialising in the Games industry Australia wide.

LIMEHOUSE  Limehouse Creative is an award winning full-service production company that believes in intelligent integration. Based in Sydney, Australia, we house a celebrated network of specialists who produce arresting creative solutions for clients from all over the world. Operating a core team and an extended network of partners and experts both locally and abroad, we collaborate with agencies and brands to create world-class visuals and content for all media channels, including print, television, online, digital and across social.  Limehouse’s international list of clients includes BBC Worldwide, JWT Singapore, Leo Burnett, M&C Saatchi and Channel 4, to name a few. Brands include Qantas, Google, Hardys, HSBC, Samsung, Snickers, Ford, Hyundai, Volkswagen and also includes an additional interest in good cause collaborations for SeeingMS, Sydney Dogs & Cats Home, ADMA and Child’s i-Foundation.

THE LIST is a compilation of job listings created by Emily Rice for production accounting professionals in the entertainment industry that is updated daily and distributed on this site.


THE LOOP  Australia’s largest professional creative community


The Savvy Startup’s Guide to Recruiting Interns  While some might consider interns a minor role, but either way, recruiting the right intern can have long-term benefits on your organization.

How to recruit and hire interns For recent graduates who lack experience, the value of an internship is obvious: they move from theoretical knowledge to a real work environment. But companies also benefit from good internship programs, so long as they’re structured to train junior employees.

How to Run an Awesome Unpaid Internship Program  Twitter and Facebook may be able to pay their interns what many of us would hope to earn full time, but for employers outside of Silicon Valley, that’s wishful thinking.

More than 4,700 companies across the U.S. are hiring interns right now, according to career database Glassdoor, and very few have anything approaching the tech giants’ resources. Is it possible for a company who can’t afford to pay its interns minimum wage, much less Silicon Valley prices, to recruit top talent?

Creative Plus Business Volunteering EOI   We’re looking for enthusiastic creatives who want to know more about business and freelancing. You need to be smart, proactive, flexible, and a team player with a great sense of humour and close attention to detail.



If you have ever tried to build a store you will be familiar with the problem of needing to work within restrictive templates, complicated checkout flows that customers abandon, and design decisions made for you by the provider of that software.


Don’t just share your products – sell them

Shopify vs BigCommerce

The eCommerce platform for WordPress

Browse hundreds of free and paid WooCommerce extensions on our official marketplace, including PayPal, Stripe, EWay, Australia Post, eBay Australia, and others popular in


Instant asset write-off for eligible businesses

Note: On 9 June 2020, the government announced it will extend the $150,000 instant asset write-off until 31 December 2020. This proposed change is subject to the parliamentary process and is not yet law.


The ATO says one in three taxpayers makes a claim for work away from employer premises. In most cases, that is a relatively small claim for occasional home working, such as at weekends, in the evenings, or whilst staying home to let a tradie in. Until now, very few employees have routinely worked from home on a long term basis. Over the coming weeks, the number of people working from home will explode as offices across the country close down.


The Australia Institute is one of the country’s most influential public policy think tanks. It conducts original research that contributes to a more just, sustainable and peaceful society. Based in Canberra, it conducts research on a broad range of economic, social, transparency and environmental issues in order to inform public debate and bring greater accountability to the democratic process.

The Institute is independent and non-partisan, funded mostly by donations and grants from individuals, philanthropic trusts and unions, as well as commissioned research from business and non-government organisations. The Australia Institute does not accept donations or commissioned work from political parties. With no formal political or commercial ties, the Institute is in a position to maintain its independence while advancing a vision for a fair and progressive Australia.

  • Follow the Money podcast: Unpacking the JobKeeper package with Richard Denniss  Follow the Money
  • Chief economist Richard Denniss on why Scott Morrison needs to target his spending or he’ll only be remembered for debt  The Guardian
  • Richard Denniss explains why we will need to put the jobless on the public payroll  Australian Financial Review
  • Economist and director of The Australia Institute’s Centre for Future Work Jim Stanford in Ten Daily on whether we really need to worry about government debt right now  10Daily
  • Senior economist at The Australia Institute’s Centre for Future Work Alison Pennington on how the federal government is using the state to attack unions and shovel money to corporations.  Jacobin Magazine
  • Jim wrote about why we need wage guarantees and radical restructure, not more ‘stimulus’  New Matilda
  • Senior economist at The Australia Institute’s Centre for Future Work Alison Pennington on how the federal government is using the state to attack unions and shovel money to corporations.  Jacobin Magazine
  • Senior economist at The Australia Institute’s Centre for Future Work Alison Pennington on how the federal government is using the state to attack unions and shovel money to corporations.  Jacobin Magazine
  • Richard Denniss, with ACTU Secretary Sally McManus and CEO of AIG Innes Willox, on how to protect the economy and jobs.  RN Breakfast
  • Deputy director Ebony Bennett on why the Centrelink increase needs to roll out immediately, not a month from now.  Sky News
  • Executive director Ben Oquist on why the government has to dump the idea of ‘temporary and targeted’ fiscal measures.  Sky News
  • Catalogue of International Initiatives to Support Workers through COVID-19
  • The Economics of an Epidemic: Explained
  • What the hell is quantitative easing’ and why are we talking about it all of a sudden?  Matt Grudnoff


  • What the hell is happening to the economy?  Dr Richard Denniss, chief economist at The Australia Institute will explain how coronavirus will impact on the economy and unpack the details of the federal government’s $66 billion economic response and what it means for ordinary Australian.









  • home office expenses
  • car expenses
  • self education
  • other people
  • recording keeping evaluation


  • TR 2005/1
  • TR 95/20
  • TR 98/14
  • TR 96/7




ARTS HUB | Michael Fox ‘Top 10 tax claims for artists and create professionals

Am I an employee or a contractor? What difference does it make to my taxes?





ATO Employee or Contract and Employee/Contractor Decision Tool

Going the extra mile – getting your travel claims right

Tax and Dividends: How your investments are taxed

Bankruptcy and insolvency: What it means for your taxes.

Deductions for Creative Business

Top 10 tax claims for artists and creative professionals

Taxable supplies and low value imported goods

Sales of goods that are to be imported into Australia that have a customs value at or below $1,000 can be non-taxable importations.  However, the supply of low value goods into Australia can be a taxable supply if the supply is connected with Australia.



True Budget is a budgeting and actualising tool for media productions, such as commercials, music videos, and promos.  It is designed to work within Microsoft Excel, and is compatible with both Mac & Windows.​

We have released True Budget v1.1.  This update mainly addresses a few minor bugs that were discovered in v1.0, related to importing another True Budget file.  If you plan to import an older True Budget file after the first of the year, we definitely recommend using v1.1.

One final note: we’ve heard that some people have issues when downloading the file.  Some web browsers seem to be either changing or adding a file extension to the True Budget file.  The file extension should be ‘.xlsb’.  If you notice the file you have downloaded ends with ‘.xlsx’, you will need to manually change it.  We aren’t sure yet why this is happening, but we’re looking into it.


Dean Cappello’s Top Tips for Shaping and Pitching Your Project

Spotting Talent and Selling Ideas – Masterclass w/ Nik Powell


Investment managers Lee Naimo and Alyce Adams dish out all their tips when it comes to applying for online funding at Screen Australia.

Four Rules for Grants

Grants are often held up as the holy grail of a successful arts career, and to be awarded “free” money can feel like a blessing, until you realise how much extra work is involved in researching and writing grants in the first place.

  • Understanding the grant landscape and researching the competitive nature of grants;
  • Steps to prepare for a grant application, including research tips and business structures that enhance opportunities;
  • Writing and planning tools to help manage time and make the most of government grants;
  • Five ways to “not bugger up” a grant application.
  • How to understand different types of grants to suit different projects and ideas, including tips for philanthropic grants;
  • Real-life examples of successful and unsuccessful grant applications to inform your writing;
  • Understanding when to accept an opportunity and what to turn down;
  • How to use collateral to support a grant application;
  • Continuing your grant researching and writing strategy as a regular part of your practice;
  • Preparing for Grant Success;
  • Other revenue strategies to help bring an idea to life.



  • How to run a successful crowdfunding campaign



Coronavirus (COVID-19)

House Lights Up – podcasts promoting positive mental health in the performing arts

House Lights Up is a podcast by Allie Imlach, and presented by the Arts Wellbeing Collective.  Each episode features honest conversations with performing arts workers about the challenges of forging a career in the arts, and strategies for overcoming them.  House Lights Up was produced with the insights, expertise, experience and generous contributions of Greta Bradman, Rachel Dunham, Gabriel Edwards, Matt Heyward, Luke Hunter, Zoe Knighton, and Rob Tremlett.


The Arts Wellbeing Collective is an Arts Centre Melbourne initiative that comprises a consortium of arts and cultural organisations who work together to promote positive mental health and wellbeing in the performing arts, enabling the performing arts to thrive.

Support Act Wellbeing Helpline 1800 959 500 (24/7)



LinkedIn is no longer only a networking or job seeking site. Clients and colleagues, past and future, use it to get a fuller picture of who you are and how you help. Use this template to assist you in showcasing your fabulous talents and abilities. Complete each section first, then consider how they’re weaved together.

5 Questions Everyone Should Ask About Their LinkedIn Profile

LinkedIn is like being at the best professional networking event of the year. Not only does it give you access to 690 million people globally (10 million in Australia), it helps you to get your name out to the people you want to know, and it’s a vital tool to position you as an expert in your industry and beyond.


The meaning of the word ‘brand’ has really shifted over time. Once understood to mean a name, sign, design or wording, ‘brand’ now describes more fully what the public will think about you based on the information that you give them to interpret.


ARTS LAW CENTRE OF AUSTRALIA:  The national community legal centre for the arts

Arts Law is Australia’s independent national community legal centre for the arts, a not-for-profit company limited by guarantee. We provide free or low cost specialised legal advice, education and resources to Australian artists and arts organisations across all art forms, on a wide range of arts related legal and business matters. Arts Law’s Artists in the Black program delivers targeted services to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists nationally.

Mastery: The Keys to Success and Long-Term Fulfillment Paperback – February 1, 1992 by George Leonard 

Easy as 1, 2, 3? Contracts in 10 Questions

Digital Marketing Newsletter

Lead Magnet Ideas 2022: The Ultimate Guide to Creative Lead Generation

Four insider tips from a leading design journalist to help you get media coverage

Succeeding in Platform-Based Marketing – Part 7: Brand as Person

32 Predictions for Social Media Marketing in 2023


What is shadow banning? And what do social platforms say about it?

Account Status feature comes to the Profile Settings menu on Facebook



Social Media Engagement: Why it Matters and How to Do it Well


Never Miss a Social Media Moment

Digital Marketing Newsletter


What is shadow banning? And what do social platforms say about it?

Account Status feature comes to the Profile Settings menu on Facebook



Social Media Engagement: Why it Matters and How to Do it Well


Never Miss a Social Media Moment





29 Best Social Media Scheduling Tools for 2022





Ultimate Guide to Instagram Shopping


3 ways post-production professionals can build a personal brand

Today I want to talk to you about something that I hazard to guess isn’t spoken of a lot on this site. Building your personal brand.  I know what you’re probably thinking: “‘Branding? What the hell does building a personal brand have anything to do with cutting! I’m an editor, not a Harvard Business Graduate! As long as I’m a good editor, that’s all that should count.”  And in a perfect world, I’d agree with you. But, last time I checked, the world is far from perfect (you need only take a brief look at the day’s news to figure that out.)  Here’s the thing: if the only thing you have going for yourself as a production professional is your NLE and storytelling skills, you could be missing out opportunities that could get you more business and higher fees.  Building a professional brand could be the best move you make in 2020 for your career. I’d like to share with you three ways in which you can do it.

Summer Blockbusters: Ad Spend and Attention Trends

We’re deep into summer movie season, so we partnered with, the always-on TV ad measurement and attribution company, to see which studios are putting major marketing muscle behind their latest blockbusters — and if that push is translating to viewer attention. The data below is from April 1 through July 9.  Overall, movie studios have spent an estimated $606.1 million dollars on 112 ads that have aired over 139,500 times and generated 43.5 billion TV ad impressions.  Universal Pictures leads the way with an estimated spend of $116.3 million, or nearly 20% of the whole industry’s outlay, followed by Warner Bros. and Twentieth Century Fox


I teach business owners, educators and entrepreneurs the profitable action steps for building a highly engaged email list, creating online training courses, and using online marketing strategies to sell with ease.

4 ways surveys support data-driven decisions

Organizations that effectively use data insights across their organization are more competitive, and can grow more than 30% each year, according to a report by Forrester.  From marketing to product development, customer success to HR, leading companies are arming their teams with data insights to improve decision making. Organizations that have been successful in developing a data culture have strong alignment between data, technology, processes, and business stakeholders.

Why 1 in 3 marketers say getting attention is their top challenge—and what to do about it

Attention is a scarce commodity. And with the overwhelming abundance of content, advertisements, brand promotions, and information we’re exposed to on a daily basis, it’s no wonder we tune so much of it out.  But our limited attention spans pose a big problem for marketers: 1 in 3 marketers (36%) say getting attention is the top challenge they face. So how on earth does a brand surface above all the noise out there to capture the attention of buyers? Can marketers be sure they’re not just adding more clutter to the information overload facing consumers today? And when it comes to bad press, is negative attention better or worse than no attention at all?


Learn every step of running a customer feedback program using surveys—from organizing your team and designing your survey to analyzing your responses and taking action.


To help small and medium businesses to change their status quo and conquer the world of digital innovation and build innovative businesses that achieve their dreams and goals.  Our holistic digital solutions incorporates insights into marketing strategy, innovative web technology and specialist guidance to empower businesses to overcome limitation and lead them toward enriched value creation.

Digital Solutions to Fight Covid-19

Digital and marketing solutions that empowers small and medium business owners to reinvent, strengthen and succeed in a post Covid world.


WHY NETWORK, from Realise Business:  As the saying goes, it’s not what you know, but who you get to know!! Networking is such an important part of growing your business, and it’s so often misunderstood. It’s not always about selling on the spot, but instead building long-term relationships so that people think of you when they next have the need for your products. Remember, people buy from people they like – relationships are key!



Australian Small Business Advisory Services and Digital Solutions program supports the Australian Government’s commitment to enhance the capabilities of local small businesses. It delivers low cost, high quality and digital advisory services to Australian Small Businesses in the metropolitan and regional areas across four priority digital capabilities.

Deb Croucher   Website and Digital Marketing Expert

Lots of people talk about Digital Marketing… but for the past 20 years, Deb has consistently delivered superb results across multiple industry sectors.  Deb and her team help established companies transform and grow, using proven website, digital marketing and social media solutions.

HUSTLE  &  HEART with Brook McCarthy.  Business has changed.  The old ways of marketing don’t work anymore.  Twenty-first century business is values-based, generous-spirited, lean and agile.  Twenty-first century business leaders need to be bold.

Online Marketing, Magnified – blogging for Business or Social Media Savvy


How do you seize the opportunity to amplify your brand and reputation? How do you stand out in this crowded space while embracing what makes you unique?

SOCIAL MEDIA  What we do in the physical world we can do in the digital world.  Online influence, creating content, braodcasting. Short form content, Stories replacing posts, User generated content, listening and sharing, Top 10 influences in the area

My Space, Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn (microsoft, google), YouTube, Website to reach large numbers of people in a personal way.

We’ve embarked on a new age of online influence where ordinary people can forge the path of celebrity, and reaching a large audience is more possible than ever. How do you seize the opportunity to amplify your brand and reputation? How do you stand out in this crowded space while embracing what makes you unique?  Join Expert Digital Marketing Presenter, Kirryn Zerna, as she runs through your key digital channels and the most effective ways for you to build credibility and create a connection with your audience!


Please note I have not used this software, it has been suggested by colleagues.

FARMERS WIFE  takes the hassle out of project management by integrating different functionalities in one single software package. We bring it all together, using tracking features to keep an eye on time and costs, making project coordination a much smoother process.

REDMINE  is a flexible project management web application. Written using the Ruby on Rails framework, it is cross-platform and cross-database.  It is open source and released under the terms of the GNU General Public License v2 (GPL).

TEAMGANNT  create a collaborative gantt chart that gives you the ability to see every step of your project from beginning to end. There is a special peace of mind knowing that you can see every step of your project.


Is a budgeting and actualising tool for media productions, such as commercials, music videos and promos.  It is designed to work within Microsoft Excel and is compatible with both Windows & Mac.  It uses the standard AICP formatting for commercials, works within Microsoft Excel (so you must have Excel installed on your computer), and is compatible with both Windows & Mac.  Can be reached at


organised by Sydney Animation Production Group

PODCAST  What do commissioning editors want to know, what do they say once you leave the room and how to leave an impression without wearing a character suit and making everyone feel awkward!

THE DARK ART OF PITCHING with Libbie Doherty,  Commissioning Editor at ABC Children’s 

What do commissioning editors want to know, what do they say once you leave the room and how to leave an impression without wearing a character suit and making everyone feel awkward!  We’ll be taking a rare look behind the doors of Australia’s most prolific children’s TV commissioning team.

Libbie Doherty is a passionate advocate for Children’s content and brings a wealth of experience from the animation and live action worlds to the position of Commissioning Editor. Libbie is focused on nurturing new Australian talent, reflecting Australian kids’ lives and creating pathways for Australian kids’ content to cut through into the international market.

Michel Carrington Head of Children’s and Education

Libby Doherty Commissioning Editor Children’s

Chris Rose Commissioning Editor, Children’s

Emma Mungavin Acquisitions Manager

Lisa Fagan Commissioning and Development Coordinator, Children’s

Libbie:  Sticky Pictures, Cheeky Little, Hackett Films, Blink Films, Sixty40, ABC Children’s

Libbie:  Loves hearing what kids have to say about content, talking about favourite shows, characters and things.  Content formulates those create touch points that children take onto their future lives.  The shows that make a difference in people’s lives.

Australian children’s content travels all over the world.

Lisa Fagan manages the submission process, government organisation and we all pay tax, is their duty of care to read all submissions and respond.  Acquisitions for pre-made content. Have to be seen to be objective.

Multiple ways of pitching – with the commissioning editor and have a chat, in front of your piers and could be 500 people, speed pitching.  Never going to walk away with an answer in the moment.  Need to know it is on the short list, they have not said they do not want that idea, they want to take it to their colleagues and have a chat. People are not selected in a pitch.




0 – 6 years channel, most successful ABC channel and has a 40% reach.  The best of Australian and International shows.

Absolutely do your RESEARCH:

  • know who you are pitching to
  • know the children’s landscape
  • know the channels you are talking to
  • every channel has its own brand, values and identity
  • who will be the best partner for my brand – ABC Me, disney, nickelodeon, stan, net flicks, channel 7, 9, 10
  • do not shoe horn the idea into something it is not

ABC ME is the dedicated channel for primary school audiences, to represent Australian children on the screen, reflected in the content.  A dedicated app iView where children can do things such as creating their own profile, curate their own favourites, news generated content, music video challenges of making a trailer, tell jokes, doing diaries.

Content genres – G and PG with scripted drama, comedy, animation, high end factual formats, for a younger or older child.  Age groups of 6 – 9, move traditional storytelling and 10 – 12 age group, move to the online space though need to be 13 to be on many social media platforms.  Age groups 0 – 6, 6 – 9, 10 – 12.

Shoulder programs to run across age groups, consider focusing on an age group.  With the digital content it is easier for the audience to move around and different choices.

Durations like 11 min and half an hour.  Pre-made content from 1 to 26 minutes


  • australian stories
  • diverse voices, non-english speaking background, cultural authentic base
  • creativity and innovation
  • primary school focus
  • accessibility, access to tablets, phones, how the content will travel with children during the day and want 1, 2 and 3 min, how the content will work across multiple platforms.  Children have access to a lot of content and parents are the gatekeepers
  • some projects lend themselves more towards adaptation
  • age appropriate
  • Everything has an underpinning of an educational feeling, thinking about your idea in an entertaining way
  • What is the question that you are exploring, what is the hypothesis.
  • 100% audience reach – Libbie’s goal 


Today’s children are born into a fully functional digital, content world how we could never have imagined as children.  They can all have devices, have computers, no longer have tv in the bed room and not interested in fighting over the remote control. Think about how they consume content. They are quite brutal, looking at content for 10 or 15 sec and if not hooked they are gone. Not longer having long extended set ups. Really savey, good narrative education and looking for intelligent, smart and clever story telling. Kids are interested in the environment, worried about the world and need to be doing topics under the right frame.

Work out who is the core audience, that one child and think about:

  • age
  • sex
  • appropriate
  • content of what might like

and convey in the context of their bigger life


  • Stories that come from the child’s point of view.  Is the main protagonist a child, if not if they are an adult do they have a child’s sensibility, are they thinking like children, how will the children access this content and connect with it on a deep level
  • Honour children’s intelligent and their point of view
  • No brand related, toys or merchandise
  • Uniquely creative, not necessarily following a trend or pattern, identify it and know that it has been done.  Think outside the box, own stories and angle.
  • Do not be tempted to create a fantastic folio
  • What is the core idea, what is the key story, who is the main character – like to get in earlier than an extended beautiful work of art
  • Business requirements, the business of making television is taken seriously
  • Articulate the idea in one page, short document
  • Partner with an Australian Producer, established company


  • Never make a show on your own, find the people early on and partner up and start collaborating together
  • Is a creative collaboration, bring different things to the project
  • Define the roles you haven how going to split the deal
  • What your contributing, sweat equity
  • Know your part in the project to help as you go along in the process, can formalise in a document
  • What to know who the team is, especially the key heads of department roles.  ABC has all right of approval of these people.  Do not promise something to someone you cannot deliver on at the other end
  • Well matched teams


  • Creative alignment, do they love the show as much as you do
  • Gets your ambition, able to represent you at a market in the same way you feel.  Look around and need to meet them more than once. Might be someone you worked with and liked working with them on their shows, this can be a good place to start
  • Looking for people with good track records, have delivered a show. Are they reliable, good business people and deliver what they say they will deliver.  Do not promise something to someone they cannot deliver
  • What is the size of their network, how well connected, travel to international markets, international distributes, meet with broadcasters regularly
  • In house production capacity, resources to develop up the show
  • Help people realise an idea and see it right through to on screen
  • The best version that it can be


Pitch to a Broadcaster first and they do not pay for everything. The  ABC  is involved in co-productions. Then go to different players in the market Overseas such as Canada, Britain and USA,  Screen Australia, Angel Investors, Amazon in America, Netflix.


  • Stereotypes, how they are represented, avoid stereotyping children
  • Relevant to children rather than imposing adult concerns and expectations about children’s behavioural standards
  • Gender balance
  • How women are represented

Humans come in all shapes and size, sexual orientation, colour, disabilities. Cultural diversity needs to be authentic.  Open our creativity to include their stories. What is your life like. Know structure, know how to create a story, bringing those people together and working openly, Accurate, representative, funny and humour.

Geena Davis Media Foundation, representation of Women and Girls in the Media.  The statistics of how girls are represented, crowd scenes 17% were women, beyond lead characters, think about behaviours and habits. This needs to be considered seriously.



  • No costumes
  • No puppets
  • No bands
  • Never pitch 100 episodes, standard is 13, 26, 52 maybe become 10, 20
  • Do not tell them they are doing really bad things, really hate that show, not a good look
  • Research, know the audience, know your editor
  • No pornographic poses
  • Do not follow into the toilet and give pitch under the door
  • Your really not going to like it, love it and want you to succeed in the pitch
  • Be enthusiastic, be excited
  • Be prepared
  • Practice, notice what they hook onto
  • Have 3 or 4 lines to start with
  • Video pitch, instead of documents, depends on the project and where the team is at


  • Good one pager outline, can keep to 3 or 4 pages.  Explaining the story, what the narrative is.  Articulate the story of characters, their journey, the hurdles, the dramas, their laughs in the 4 pages to get a good idea of what trying to achieve
  • Good stories and rich, complex worlds that the characters are going to be put in
  • Not necessarily every story
  • Bio, half page
  • One page outline for Ep 1, 2 and 3 can be helpful, though not essential.  Can usually tell from the story, a couple of pages
  • Can do pencil sketches, rough art if not send in references
  • What kind of shows do you like
  • Your aspirations, your sense of aesthetic, trailer of past experience
  • Do not need to spend a lot of money
  • No budgets, multi-platform extensions, one minute teaser
  • What the characters look like comes later


To take to the next stage, start with story, what the series are, brainstorming what the show is about in a bigger way, initial character, backgrounds.

Starting out in their careen and getting a break, encourage every team to have a young.  For the project to move on in a meaningful way will what experienced people who can help guide the process.  More experienced people to give you the space to do what you need to do, to fulfil your creative ambition for the show. Early career people to be open to the experience, not feel threatened by it, make it work for you and have an open mind. Never their intention to take your idea and make the show.

ABC has approval over everything, have the final say on all scripts, on everything, they have paid for it.  All through scripting, pre-production, design for every episode, character, prop, background, storyboards, animatics, animation passes, effects passes, cuts, mixes. When there are multiple funding bodies the intention is for a collaborative decision, some funding bodies rely on the ABC for the creative process, other times who ever puts in the biggest money has the biggest say.

Small businesses seeking to fine tune their digital marketing strategy to take full advantage of the opportunities in the market place.  We are all conscious of costs and time while being constantly overwhelmed with information. What is happening with the digital, marketing and technology overload and where do we start.

insanity-einstein-quotesBe prepared to learn, the luxury to learn new concepts, strategies and language and not rely on ‘hope’ marketing.  Give yourself time to discover new strategies, understand new words and concepts.   There are five marketing tactics and customers will find you along the path to purchase. You need to put in time and effort and know who your customer is.

Google switched its algorithms, changes on the internet and looking at how this works we need to grow our enquires building trust, reputation and authority in the eyes of Google.  A business that Google trusts enough to present to the people searching for a particular product or business. An algorithm is a process or set of rules to be followed in calculations or other problem-solving operations, especially by a computer.

It is about building your trust reputation and authority in the eyes of Google so that it trust you enough to present your business in a user search. How does a business come up in a search result?  Google says: I know your previous search history, where you are geographically locally at the time, your IP address, knows your social media behaviour, what you comment on, what you like etc.  Google says: I want to return the best possible search results and web pages relevant to the person doing the search, using the machine learning algorithms and semantic search to return the best possible answer on the internet, the best possible user experience when we are searching.  What appears on page one of a Google search is different for everyone.  If you want to be presented in a search then build trust, reputation and authority in the eyes of Google to be the best possible solution for that query.  It is ongoing, needs consistency and semantic search has changed how potential customers are going to find our business and has changed how we manage our marketing, publishing content. Before it would return the same to everyone the same pages whether it was relevant or not.

Need two key things in place for this to work:

  • need to be very clear on who the customer is
  • branding in check, a strong brand which includes tone of voice, visual identity including logo, colour, imagery, video, words, language

Need to be searchable, if Google does not trust you then you have no hope. We have two customers, Google and Humans = we need to be searchable.  Because of Machine Learning, if you have different things it confuses the Machine Learning and the algorithms cannot figure you out and trust you in a search.  It is all about Machine Learning.

Machine Learning algorithms can read photos.  Google trusted photographers, paid service, will take photos which can be 360º views and then will upload to Google My Business profile in their preferred way.

Much better off to use your own domain name and build your own digital assets, not living on rented property and own your own domain.  Off the shelf website, a free build that you do yourself.  All about the domain name, all the activity associated with the domain name and your web presence and does not matter what platform you are using.  Web sites and blogs are now better to all be in one spot.  Go where your customers are hanging out, hang out there, it could be linkedIn and posting your commentary.

Reviews, can never have an off day in customer service, need to respond to all reviews as people have taken the time to write it. Responding positively to negative reviews, maybe need to go for a walk, be objective and it can be the best form of PR, do not be scared of it and it can lend some legitimacy to your business. People are pretty savoy and maybe the customer is having a bad day.

The customer may not always be right but they are never wrong.

Google are investing in the long term, have a strategic vision and recognise that domination means that they recognise the need for a customer centric view.  They built Semantic Search because their brand was on the line when you do your search. They will only have world domination if we let them have it, because we will make the trade for the convenience they give us. The vision is grounded in what we want, the experience and delivering that.  Always start from the customer perspective, the target market, then speak about benefiting the customer and if you have not done that you will confuse people and the Google search.  How are you benefiting the customer, be consistence.

Organic search, not paid for

FIVE  STEP  methodology

No one part works in isolation, doing them all at the same time, commit to the five steps.

Step One

Google My Business – is free

Optimising your page with up-to-date and accurate information, have as much content as possible such as written words, photos, video, reviews. Show people you’re open for business.  Get your opening hours, phone number and directions on Google Search and Maps.  When people search for you, does your phone number show up? Is the right address and website listed?  Control how you appear on Google Search and Google Maps.

Google + page

You automatically get when you sign up for Google My Business.  Post directly into Google +, is Google’s answer to social media.  Google will index and is learning about you, your business.  Is another way to be posted in a search, # tag, it which helps Google index and identify it, key words.

Semantic Search Algorithms Engines (Google, Yahoo, Bing), Google owns 70% of the search market.  Register your business on Bling and all of the search engines then you control the content and look at the semantic web check list with things you need to do to get it out there.  Write your own Search Engines listing otherwise it will draw information form other sources, it is attempting to find photos of your business and the risk is that they will put bad photos in when you do not post your own content.

Step Two

Mobile, need to be google mobile friendly, mobile first, desk top second.  Google will give preference to a site that is mobile friendly, it is about user experience.

Mobile-Friendly Test Link

Step Three

Content, Google needs content for their algorithms to figure you out, can they trust your business enough to present your business in a search. Google needs original content on an ongoing basis, post content as often as you can so Google can figure out if they can trust you.

Now you are publishes of content which are blogs, video, images and not just about your product and services, it can be about local things happening, other products you use.  When posting commentary consider talking about the region you service, refer to it in places other than contact information, it is about projecting your image.  It can be things related around your business, DIY information, best practice, markets, festivals, local stuff, local theatre and things happening around your business and where you are.

Step Four

Visuals, Google wants them, they want to build their images and they do not want thumbnails, the tiny images, you will be penalised for them, they want quality and original content.  Uses images to figure you out, original, relevant and beautiful content that comes up in search results, can read what is in the image.  Consider using people to bring them alive such as your target market.  Think about how people search for your product or service, break that down and execute that into your website.

Google owns youTube.

Step Four

Social Media, is now Social SEO.  Distribution for your content, for sharing and loving your content.  When you sign up for an account use the same URL, because the Algorithms pick up on the activity associated with those URLs, it is all about Machine Learning.

With the social media it is all about engagement, if it is liked, shared, commented on then it builds the natural back links which is links from other sites to your web site.  It also tells Google they must be good at what they do because people like their content. Need engaged people rather then lots and lots of people that it is not relevant to. The back links could be associated businesses that relate to and point to your business.  Builds a community, working together as a business community and when people engage with your content it will happen automatically.  If you get published, is good for your web site because they are authorities, builds your trust reputation and authority with Google. Google is telling us we need to focus on back linking and content.

Like provides content for the search engine, sharing positions you as a leader about knowing other things, not only your business. Giving them Link Juice, a back link and always provide some commentary, why would they read the article why are you posting it and put my spin on it.

Social SEO, search engine optimisation is a methodology of strategies, techniques and tactics used to increase the amount of visitors to a website by obtaining a high-ranking placement in the search results page of a search engine (SERP) — including Google, Bing, Yahoo and other search engines.

Jim Munroe

Dumb SEO Questions

David Amerland ‘Google Semantic Search’

I am an international speaker, author and business journalist.  I talk about data mining, search, the social web and how they all converge.

Exact Match Domain EMD   Do exact match domains still work as an SEO tactic?

Search Engine Land

What Is Social SEO?  By Mark Walters

5 Things You Need to Know About Social Media & SEO

Google AdWords is an online advertising service, developed by Google, where advertisers pay to display brief advertising copy to web users.  Google AdWords is quite complex, consider using an expert, do not dabble and consider putting your energy into original content and Google +.

LinkedIn Selling

Affiliate Programs to make commissions, to make money by referring to other web sites:

  • Commission Junction
  • clixGallore Is an online advertising company owned by Conversant, Inc. operating in the affiliate marketing industry and operates world wide

Hootsuite Save time by managing all of your social media marketing efforts from a single dashboard. You get the tools to manage all your social profiles and automatically find and schedule effective social content..

Incognito search, if you don’t want Google Chrome to save a record of what you visit and download, you can browse the web privately in Incognito mode.  It takes all the previous search history out.

Black Cat marketing, is the old ways when you would buy back links by buying your way to the top of the page and does not work anymore.


Is an insights and consulting company established and run by Bronwyn White and Carolyn Childs.  We set the company up in 2011 because we saw that tourism businesses and destinations were often confused or overwhelmed by research and struggled to apply it to their businesses. But when presented in the right way, in a business context, they loved it!  We saw many success stories when this happened.

MUMBRELLA  is a discussion of everything under Australia’s media and marketing umbrella.

SEO 101: What is Semantic Search and Why Should I Care?

BRONWYN  WHITE   Small Business Marketing Tips

DIY  MARKETING  MENTOR I coach and train small business owners about marketing – I make it easy.  I am OBSESSED with marketing.  I live and breathe marketing concepts, trends and its future.  The marketing landscape is ever-changing – making it very difficult for any small business owner to keep up-to-date.

MARKETING LAB is a hub for businesses and people who want to improve their marketing knowledge.   To be able to get ahead in digital marketing, self lead DIY


DIY Marketing System

AUTODESK  Design 2020


Future of Making Things by Andy Cunningham, Autodesk

Industry Update by Greg Ewing, President (NSW) Engineers, Australia

Customer presentation by Steve Fox, BIM Consulting    T. +61 2 8252 8488   M. +61 (0)452 455 165

The Value of Collections by Autodesk technical team, Sam Macalister & Matthew McKnight

‘How to get there’: Moving to Subscription by Andy Cunningham, Autodesk.

Can put sensors in everything, getting cheaper everyday such as parking meters, pot holes, air conditioning, the home environment such as looking at what is in the fridge when at the supermarket and creating a network of information.  Is changing the way things are designed.  Moving to a common data environment, one common project controlled data environment, current usage and the project controlled around it, project lifecycle.

How do we include a lot of customisation, collaboration and real time changes and feed back into the design process to extend the value of the products that are being made.  Digital technology and information driving visualisation is impacting the industry.  The technologies can make the design process and delivery smarter, more efficient and more robust.

Working with manufacturers and how there can be a better workflow, for design into manufacture.  How do you get the conditions right in the modelling environment?  Information, the data and how models deliver information and how the information drives the visualisation.

The exchange of information is vital to the process, progression and is it adding value to the process.  Looking at cloud based solutions, to exchange data live, the data is in the cloud. How 3D modelling is the compelling feature of exchanging the information to give some one the overview of the master plan.

How to visualise the data, colour any way you like, showing all the aspects of the modelling.  The point cloud data into a model to get accuracy with the information.  Ip is an old conversation.

Building Information Modelling (BIM) is a process involving the generation and management of digital representations of physical and functional characteristics of places. Building information models (BIMs) are files (often but not always in proprietary formats and containing proprietary data) which can be extracted, exchanged or networked to support decision-making regarding a building or other built asset. Current BIM software is used by individuals, businesses and government agencies who plan, design, construct, operate and maintain diverse physical infrastructures, such as water, refuse, electricity, gas, communication utilities, roads, bridges, ports, tunnels, etc

BIM (Building Information Modeling) is an intelligent 3D model-based process that gives architecture, engineering, and construction (AEC) professionals the insight and tools to more efficiently plan, design, construct, and manage buildings and infrastructure.

City of Sydney, analysis future development or proposed development, calculating hundred of thousands of point in order to create an assessment based on access to blue sky in proportion to the silhouette of the building.

Virtual Reality is useful for customer centre design and user experience.

Progressive point cloud scanning, what can be captured such as levels in a ceiling and colour coding, setting the bench mark around the heights and put a gradient and it will colour it for you.  Get out of the mind set of the traditional documentation delivery. New ways of getting information across to developers and state holders.

Contracted scope, assess it and deliver it.  How are projects handed over, improve disconnected information and starting to do with point cloud analysis. Consider the people who are going to inherit the models and do not know how to use it.  Make it useable and give them a fighting chance and can access the data.  Needs to be modelled with integrity and has the correct data is there.

Technologies like Generative Design, designed by a computer system and Additive Manufacturing, printed by a machine are a match made in heaven such as Toyota for a cylinder head to more efficiently to cool the system.

Virtual Reality as part of the design workflow, the quality of the surfaces and part of a sales process to show.  How they sell a product as a service, the manufacture retains ownership.

Smart, connected products are products, assets and other things embedded with processors, sensors, software and connectivity that allow data to be exchanged between the product and its environment, manufacturer, operator/user, and other products and systems. Connectivity also enables some capabilities of the product to exist outside the physical device, in what is known as the product cloud. The data collected from these products can be then analyzed to inform decision-making, enable operational efficiencies and continuously improve the performance of the product.

Customisation and collaboration are an important part of the workflow – designing headphones to fit your ear, using the photographs to custom make them for a mass market product.

Configurate as part of the design process, uniquely making products to suite individual needs instead of for the mass market.  People, from around the world can work on a project collaboratively without the traditional challenges they would face.

Testing earlier in the design and manufacturing process helps to make decisions about the quality of the design and is it meeting expectations. The algorithms uses real world data to improve the next version of the design.  If we make design changes how will impact other areas?  Managing data can be a challenge for manufacturing.  Can use for online catalogues, applying technology to the mass market.

Integrated workflow across the design lifecycle, a workflow that can taking data outside and using it as part of the BIM process.

Conform group uses the web site where the customer enters the information required that enables a custom design to be constructed.


The Australian belief in a fair, jus, flourishing country in a thriving democracy.  The building of people-power on a massive, unprecedented scale that will not go ignored by any politician, business or institution.  Develop practical organising skills and grassroots strategy in engaging, interactive workshops and be inspired by some of Australia and the world’s most preeminent community organisers. Building lasting relationships with locals and gain a supportive network to take collective action, function together with moving forward.

Campaigns won’t be won without people power.  Community organising is the craft of building that power. It’s the art of being able to bring people together and create inclusive spaces where diversity is valued and welcome, to facilitate great meetings and strategise effectively together. It’s about being able to have powerful conversations with others in the community in order to change what’s politically possible. These are core skills that can build lasting people power in our movement — and that’s what will see us achieve a fairer, more just and thriving Australia.

WORKSHOPS four workshops are:

  • Strategy and Power: Achieving change on the issues we care about doesn’t happen by accident. It takes planning and strategic decision-making so that when we act together, we have the greatest possible impact. This workshop dives into the key elements of successful campaigns and provides you with skills to make strategic campaign decisions in your local context.

  • Making Meetings Magic: Meetings are where people work together to make collective decisions and plan for actions. Put simply: meetings are where the magic happens in groups, and getting them right is essential to having the impact we want in the world. Covering the basics of effective meetings; the role of facilitator; and some key tools facilitators and participants can use to keep meetings on track with healthy dynamics. As we build an amazing people-powered movement, this workshop will be all about making our meetings, like our campaigns, super effective.

  • Powerful Conversation: One-to-one conversations are the backbone of a successful campaign – whether that’s through door-knocking, stalls, phone calls, or with family and friends. In this workshop you will be introduced to a framework for presuasive conversations that’ll help you engage with people’s values and concerns, shift their thinking and move them to action. You’ll have an opportunity to practice these skills in the workshop.

  • Building an Inclusive Group: One of the major objectives of GetUp is to build a fair and inclusive Australia — to achieve that we need to understand what diversity means and how to live and work inclusively. This workshop will help us identify our blind spots and how to create a movement that is inclusive of social and cultural differences.

Remember that social movements are messy and experiences of learning together.  As we grow ethical behaviours will be important in helping us forge respectful, productive and cohesive groups that are effective and rewarding for everyone.

To have an inclusive goal you need to understand other people’s values.  Look for common things.

Understand how the system works and have your voice heard.

Think of a time you felt excluded from a group.  What can a group do to bring you into the group. Exclusive groups are negative, fixated to a belief and do not listen.

Inclusive, expand our base, value each person’s experience and contribution equally, the sum of the parts.  Value a wide range of skills. Evolving. Find and give common ground.  Understand both partners. Do not make it personal. Together we build successful campaigns.

Broaden the group, social media.  The people who are going to help you move the goal to achievement.

Planning, learning about the issue. What are we wanting to achieve.  Look at the outcome and work back. Consider resistance, apathy and agreement with issues that are important.

Strategy understand the elements.  A map that charts the territory between our current position and the achievement of our intended change objectives can help us achieve our purpose and avoid the sense of being overwhelmed that often accompanies social and environmental activism.

Tactics, state holders from their perspective.  SWOT analysis – Straight, Weaknesses, Opportunity and Threats, it can be carried out for a company, product, place, industry, or person. It involves specifying the objective of the business venture or project and identifying the internal and external factors that are favorable and unfavorable to achieve that objective.

ALL TOGETHER NOW vision is for an Australia that embraces cultural diversity and is free from racism. We seek to achieve this by creating innovative, evidence-based and effective social marketing that is positive, provocative and courageous.

CHANGE AGENCY is an independent social movement education initiative. We work with community organisers and activists in the Australia Pacific region to help people win social and environmental change.

DECOLONIZING SOLIDARITY is a site full of resources and ideas. It aims to inspire, support, trouble and give direction to the work of people who support Aboriginal struggles. If you are relatively experienced, or have a specific skill to offer, then you can sign up to the database and it may be possible to direct you to an Aboriginal-led project you can support. You can also sign up to find out about new resources, ideas and actions.

GUERNICA a magazine of global arts and politics

GUIDE TO ALLYSHIP  an ever-evolving and growing open source guide meant to provide you with the resources for becoming a more effective ally.


TRAINING for CHANGE  was founded on Martin Luther King’s birthday in 1992, a carefully chosen birthday for a group that spreads the skills of democratic, nonviolent social change.


Meetings are where people work together to make collective decisions and plan for action – it’s where the magic happens. This workshop will cover the basics of effective meetings; the role of facilitator; and some key tools facilitators and participants can use to keep meetings on track with healthy dynamics. As we build an amazing people powered network there’s going to be a lot of meetings, so let’s get them right!







What people like about working in groups – seeing the light bulbs go off, opportunity to connect with other people, when people are authentic and real, surprised when preconceived ideas are improved on, how things show up in group dynamics, dealign with conflict that enhances the group, collaborative nature of sharing, inclusiveness, more powerful than an individuals thoughts, ideas or processes and different ways of thinking for a better whole.

Meetings are a key tool for working in teams to be able to get things done. When running meetings it is important to connect with participants, especially when they do not know each other.  In everyones interested, inspired, enjoy coming to meetings and a feeling of responsibility when leaving.

Minutes might be the whole discussion or maybe be the actions and need to faithfully report what people have said.

Introduction, opening and agreement:

This is what we are here for is everyone ok with this, this is what we want to achieve is everyone ok with this or is there something else we can do.  Affirm this is what we want to do.

HOW TO MAKE MEETINGS EFFECTIVE, where people work together for collaborative discussions to get things done, have actions so people can go away and do stuff. Some key tools for facilitation and how to keep meetings on track.

In the participants agreement there would be some guidelines on how the meetings will be run, how the meeting will be facilitated, the culture and behaviour in the meeting.  This can be added to as an ongoing agreement, a guideline and can go up at each meeting as a reminder.

  • ensure everyone has an equal say, everyone contributing
  • everyone has the opportunity for equal say
  • how long people speak for
  • one person speaking at a time, no cross chat
  • staying on the topic, issue, point
  • clarity of intention, why we are at the meeting, having the meeting
  • growth mind set
  • respect including others opinions
  • how is the agreement going to be used e.g. speaking over someone else, the facility respectfully closes off the conversation and brings it back to the other person.
  • everyone present and listening to others
  • people come late, the facilitator says welcome we are …………………. and picking it up where they come in, giving it a context and not going back
  • mobile phone use, part of being present and be respectful when expecting calls

The issue with Participants aspirations, where is the room if I do not know how to do all of these things yet, what actions can I do and does my behaviour reflect that?


EXAMPLES of GOOD, meetings go well

  • clarity of doable actions, clarity of action
  • collaborative environment, inclusive experience, inspired and energy to go and do things
  • openness and curiosity of what happened and evolved, reveals something, might need to do more and is ok, attitude, emotionally integrated
  • rewarding experience
  • self responsibility, clear observations and evaluation, facts and clear observations possibly not personal opinion, not inflaming state what is going on with words such as all, everyone, always
  • shared tasks and responsibility to achieve the outcome, team effort for ownership as a group
  • feedback built in, welcome
  • space for celebration and mourning
  • conscious choice about what we can deal with and not deal with, prioritise as a group, flexibility
  • leave feeling empowered, inspired, ownership of tasks, self-responsibility
  • positive intent
  • focused
  • choice to the meeting, not railroaded

EXAMPLES of BAD, avoid in meetings

  • aim not met, issue not dealt with, not resolved, the point of the meeting is not achieved
  • people leaving unsatisfied
  • dominance of a few
  • going off topic at length
  • people have to be right and win
  • confrontational attitude
  • disrespectful
  • unresolved goals
  • ganging up, bullying, stacking meetings
  • closing people down


Task, mechanics and structure, things like timing, agenda, action items.

Maintenance, keeping good will, like the culture, building rapport between people.

Before the meeting find out what people want to collaborate on, what people might be able to get agreement on what there will never get agreement on.  Take this to the meeting, be transparent about it.


The role of the facilitator, a central role to keep the maintenance together and organise the tasks.

  • modelling and encouraging respectful and productive communication.  The value of reflective listening.
  • equalising participation and ensuring participants hear each other.  Being aware, not always possible to be equal, active listening, focus on the person speaking, having the opportunity, feel included with eye contact, body language.  The use of smaller group.
  • keeping the group on the subject, focusing and avoiding tangents.  Park for now, take off line then respect and reflect, talk about it after the meeting.  Can have a car park flip chart and come back to it.
  • responding to what the group wants while staying focused on the meeting purpose.  What the group wants to talk about and maybe it is not on the agenda.  Be flexible, ask the group what they want to do, the facilitator chooses. Sometimes it does not all fit together.  Could restate the objective of the meeting, what needs to be achieved and maybe have another meeting to discuss that thing.  Could change the focus, it is an important point, clarify it and people interested in this could come to another meeting.  Need to avoid cross talk.
  • clarifying, interpreting and summarising.
  • pacemaking, moving through the agenda and keeping to time, with some flexibility.
  • encouraging creativity and a wide range of ideas. We do not have to agree, get them all out and capture them.  Have fun where innovation comes from.
  • supporting the group to narrow the options down and come to decision.  Is there a way to include something that might be important that has been left out
  • defining or calling for proposals to move things forward.  Agree on a small part and move on from that, come to the meeting with what we can agree on and then move forward.  Down the line do what we might be able to agree on.
  • encouraging evaluation, helping the group learn so future meetings go well.  It gives people feedback to go forward, always something positive then could do differently, finish on a positive.  How you can improve, do not put someone down, would be really good if you could do ….. could we possibly do that ………naming what you do want, work towards instead of moving away, vision driven, what people want to hear, what can do not want cannot do or not done.


Successfully doing business in PNG  By Sunil Sivarajah

PAPUA New Guinea is blessed with an abundance of natural resources, including minerals, oil and gas and seafood products the development of which is supported by stable Government and robust laws.

There are however risks underpinning any PNG commercial transaction, as would be the case in any country. In my view, any entity that is focussed on building or developing successful PNG operations should consider the following matters to the extent applicable:

  1. Consider the broader social, cultural and regulatory context of PNG;
  2. Assess and identify an appropriate corporate vehicle or transaction;
  3. Undertake risk management;
  4. Review timeframes and update expectations to save costs – always expect the unexpected.

Angel Network

Oprah’s Angel Network, a public charity formed in 1998, was established to encourage people around the world to make a difference in the lives of others. Oprah’s vision is to inspire individuals to create opportunities that enable underserved women and children to rise to their potential. Oprah’s Angel Network initiates and supports charitable projects and provides grants to not-for-profit organizations around the globe that share in this vision.

Anna Guz  is a highly qualified and caring Naturopath and Wellness Consultant with more than 10 years of experience in running her own clinical practice.  With degrees in both Science and Naturopathy, Anna’s approach to each patient’s treatment plan draws from her skills, education and work experience. This allows her to help you find your way through to the best solutions for your specific health issue.

Australian Institute of Management

Logi Blog

Australia Tests

Best Practice is a method or technique that has been generally accepted as superior to any alternatives because it produces results that are superior to those achieved by other means or because it has become a standard way of doing things, e.g., a standard way of complying with legal or ethical requirements.

Best Practice Certification  We understand that training and development plays a critical role in business improvement success. We are committed to partner with you to enable you to deliver and inspire customer confidence in your team and organisation. We established the Training Academy to bring you best practice training to upskill yourself and your team. Our online and onsite training courses cover business improvement tools, management systems, international standards, business tips and industry insights.

Best Practice Certification With a vision to unleash the potential in everything everywhere, provide friendly, flexible business solutions, and a commitment to continual improvement, Kobi Simmat founded Best Practice Certification in 2004.


Bullying No Way

Professor Michael Clyne

The Conversation  is an independent, not-for-profit media outlet that uses content sourced from the academic and research community.

‘The Coup That Laid the Fear of China’ by Stephen FitzGerald

How a lone, young diplomat, Stephen FitzGerald, turned around policy on China

Keep Customers with Customer Service Excellence  Business Victoria

Customer service guide: how happier customers lead to healthier business Office of Fair Trading, NSW Consumer Protection Agency, Department of Commerce.

THREE  FARM  The notion is simple and powerful that to make a positive change in society one not only needs their minds to think, dream and speak about change but also their hands to tinker, test, build to create change!

Tomorrow’ Company  is an independent non-profit think tank that exists to inspire and enable business to be a force for good in society.

Essi Systems:  Stress and EQ Experts

HUMANITY  in  BUSINESS Creating a Leadership, Revolution that Supports, Authentic Leaders to Create, An Engaged and Purposeful Business

Living Fundraisers  We believe fundraising should be easy, fun, profitable, healthy and good for the environment and the community.

Intercultural Development Research Institute

The Karpin Enquiry and the Role of Management Education in Australia: History Revisited?

Leadership Learning Dynamics is an international provider of customised learning and training solutions for individuals and corporate, government, local government, education, small and non-for-profit business.

Learning is Not Linear (“I tell you this and you now know it and know how to apply it”)

Leadership Nouveau  helps individuals and organisations tap into latent development potential with lasting results.  Great leaders do not tell what to do………..they show you how it is done.

Options Consulting Group  has celebrated over 25 years of serving Australian Manufacturing with a proven approach of Facilitating Growth in Business and People since 1990 – in other words, we’re helping your business grow.

Podcast The Slow Home with Brooke McAlary by Jackrabbit.FM.  We live life in the fast lane. We race to keep up with The Joneses. We are over-worked, over-connected and over-stressed, and we compete on how busy and important and sleep-deprived we are. But we don’t have to. There is an ever-growing group of people who are saying no to life lived at 110%. They are opting to slow down, simplify, say no and focus on the things that are truly important. Brooke McAlary, the founder of, is one of them, and in this podcast she chats to others who have adopted a similar approach to life: simple living, slowing down, opting out, saying no. Learn what makes people change, how life is different, and what their advice is to anyone looking to get out of the fast lane

RELAXATION  CENTRE of QUEENSLAND  A unique organisation in Brisbane – commenced 1974 – powered almost entirely by volunteers and a remarkable team of presenters from Brisbane and visiting from overseas and interstate.

We’re here to show participants:

  1. How we can use our remarkable minds to bring beneficial changes in our lives.
  2. How by using a range of ideas and techniques we can reduce stress, anxiety and improve physical and mental issues.
  3. Just how powerful the effects of right attitudes can be and how all too often our lives can be controlled and made more difficult because of unconscious conditions.

To listen to an audio podcast, mouse over the title and click Play. Open iTunes to download and subscribe to podcasts.

Why Introverts and Extroverts Are Different: The Science

Sahaja Yoga

School’s in for smarter emotions  Story by Gio Bradiotti

Six Sigma Critical Success Factors “You can’t manage what you can’t measure.”

Six Critical Success Factors for a Six Sigma Deployment is a powerful tool for solving business problems and driving excellence in organizations. Its benefits can include breakthrough improvements, cost savings, defect reduction, greater customer satisfaction, and higher productivity and efficiency. To reap these benefits, however, organizations must pay close attention to six key factors that can make or break a Six Sigma deployment.

SmartOrg is about making choices. Not small ones, like what brand of coffee to have in the break room, but the big, hairy, complex business decisions that determine whether or not companies succeed or fail. Decisions where largtheaqc risks are involved – and you won’t know if you’ve made the right decision right away. For example, choices about what products to develop, what services to offer, what technologies to pursue, what companies to acquire, what regions to penetrate, where to cut costs and which opportunities will provide the best return on investment

Sydney Talks SydneyTalks is a free service listing interesting talks in Sydney.  Our list is updated regularly to ensure you receive the most accurate information entered by the organisers, but we recommend that before attending you confirm details with them.

Whistleblowing  Public interest whistleblowing (insiders speaking up about possible wrongdoing) is a vital part of modern integrity systems in all organisations, institutions and political systems.  The Centre for Governance & Public Policy plays a lead role in whistleblowing research, policymaking and law reform around the world.

Whistleblowing in the Australian Public Sector:  First Report Australian Research Council Linkage Project, Whistling While They Work: Enhancing the Theory and Practice of Internal Witness Management in Public Sector Organisations, Draft ReportEdited by A J Brown Socio-Legal Research Centre Griffith Law School, October 2007

Where Have All The Buffalo ‘Gone’  Chief Seattle’s Letter to President Franklin Pierce, of United States 1852 

Wake Up Celebrating Mindful Living and Leadership.  We’re a community of 150,000+ people offering transformative events and experiences to connect you to your inner wisdom, celebrate what matters most and help you discover how to make the world a kinder place.  Additionally, we have posted out more than 350,000 Kindness Cards for free, encouraging anonymous acts of kindness.

A COLLECTION of SOME INTERESTING THOUGHTS and IDEAS from bits and pieces I have accumulated and read:


There is no ‘formula’ – there are no guarantees that a project that looks great on paper will result in a financial success when it hits the screens.  Film investment is a commercial proposition with the same checks and balances as for any other risk-prone investment.  Know the market before spending a lot on the development or making of a film.  Consider sustainability as opposed to only subsidy.

  • Why is the track record of the producer and the distributor?
  • What is the level of exposure of the investor relative to other financiers?
  • How good is the deal offered to the investor?

A film investment has to be presented as a commercial proposition with the same checks and balances as for any other risky investment.  The is also an unquantifiable emotional element, a leap-of-faith, especially for ideas that are different. Investors need to be calculating and conservative on one hand, but bold and innovative on the other.

Filmmakers need to be more proactive in finding ways to attract private investment.  Think more about commercial prospects of their projects and what they have to offer investors.  Selling a film investment to potential investors purely as a tax deal is not enough, the investment has to be commercially attractive and offer potential and realistic upside to the investor.

Recognise that it is the inspired and courageous decisions and planning that make daydreams pragmatically realisable, creating films with great atmosphere by having a relentless attention to detail, trusted expertise and talent, is the people and the planning that brings it all tougher.  The assessment of creative assessment is integral to the production of better films.


  • Soft Money:  Money provided by tax breaks that does not have to be repaid to the investor
  • Subsidies:  Money provided by government agencies, withe jin the form of loads, grants or equity.
  • Equity:  Money from real investors who, although they may be able to structure the investment tax effectively, still take a commercial risk in the success of the film.
  • Distribution guarantees:  Provided by a distributor as an advance agains the sales income from the rights in the film, which the distributor is entitles to sell.


  • Development costs:  Writing and developing the script, preparing budgets and production schedules and securing the director, cast and production financing.
  • Production costs:  Costs involved in making and delivering the film to the distributors.   These are generally the biggest costs, although marketing budgets on Hollywood blockbusters can exceed production costs.
  • Marketing (or prints and advertising) costs:  Costs relating to distributing a film that is, getting it out into the marketplace.

Sir Edmund Hillary once said “people do not decide to become extraordinary.  They decide to accomplish extradorinaiy things’.

Challenge rewires the brain to be motivated and happy, and a lack of it encourages the opposite.  Something exciting and worthwhile about a little hardship and responsible risk taking, the inexplicably wholesome feeling of appreciation, accomplishment and motivation that you experience. A level of satisfaction, contentment and happiness.  Comfort zones only exist so that we know where we must step beyond, when we want to feel alive. Learn how to recognise, acknowledge and accept things that cannot be fixed and to stay focused and remain positive afterwards. The importance of teamwork and friendship, careful risk management and decision making, as well as the realisation that revenge, retaliation, grudges and blame can only ever make the situation worse. Presence, profile, possibilities, power.  Business is people and the need for trust between worker and manager, working for a winner, inspiring leadership, a great workplace and a noble purpose of rather work.  An understanding for when to change a business model and not necessarily about strategy. Executives understanding wealth creation. Follow through and get things done and not being attached to process, meetings and policy groups.  The importance of education and staff development.  Some thoughts from the final chapter as I finished reading  Bray, C., 2010. The 1000 hour day: two adventurers take on the world’s harshest island. Pier 9, Sydney.

A story about who you want to be, not what you want to be.  Not only what I want to accomplish but why – story about my purpose so when I stumble and in a whole this will get me out – this story.  My true calling, Dharma, purpose.

Is it an achievable goal? What are the benefits of failure? Is it driven by a fear of failure?  Is there a desire for success? Is there a set of criteria from the world? Are we colluding with apathy? NO such thing as failure, is life pushing us in another direction?

There is an expired date for blaming parents. When the greatest fear is realised and having hit rock bottom this then became the solid foundation on which to rebuilt your life becoming secure in the ability to survive. Trouble does not last.

The stripping away of the inessential, stop pretending to be anything that what you really are.  Not always clear in the beginning, not necessarily know my purpose right away.  Real progress is authentic.

Life is beyond total control and having the humanity to know that. No matter how far you rise you will stumble. Learn from every mistake. Have an internal moral GPS. When you learn, teach. When you get, give. Set backs, disappointments, the only goal is the highest, most truthful expression of yourself. What makes you come alive, this is what the world needs.

Having the power to empathise with people who’s experiences we have never shared.  Having a human empathy leading to collective action.  We can learn and understand without experience.  Extend yourself in kindness.  Cannot demonise or vilify someone who does not agree with you.

Want to be understood and validated, was that ok, did you hear me, do you see me, did what I said mean anything to you.

Respect and be consulted when my interests are concerned.

Empathetic attitudes and communications skills help to get business done.

Not everyone has a secure job in a financially sound, mature organisation.

Inclusivity, not only focusing on financial objectives, by attuning to the needs of stakeholders, staff, investors, customers, suppliers and the community.

We should not have to work this hard to have effective representation in a democracy.

Is there a one universal set of values in a global economy, global protections or stateless with a lack of effective legal and regulatory framework?

Three types of motives: need for achievement, need for affiliation and need for power then consider achievement does not translate in all languages.

There needs to be political leadership for businesses to be successful.

You do not import an economy.

Fear of the unknown.

Conducting a negotiation with no preparation, no thought and no planning, maybe you will not make it.

Might have a business plan that is totally inconsistent with the ability to deliver. Select the right people, appraise them to determine how effective they are and reward and recognise people.

You cannot satisfy the customer in every way, the cost would be infinite.  There is no substitute for doing some old-fashioned hard work in thinking about what you are doing: too many managers just want to hire consultants to do it.  No advisor or commentator has the right to decide what is right for your business.

Effective leadership is about interpersonal skills, ability to communicate with people, the ability to get the best out of team and being able to make changes effectively and rapidly.

An awareness of working environments that include intimidation, harassment, heavy scrutiny of work, ostracism, unsafe or humiliating work and other workplace-based negative behaviour

Inclusion of staff who understand both languages and cultures of clients from different cultures in order to be successful in today’s global marketplace.  Making cross-cultural flexibility of staff a key resource.

Take the time to get to know the other side, be respectful including being aware of status and face and remember the entertaining plays a crucial role in developing relationships.

Be aware that all cultures structure information and arguments in different ways ranging from forceful to more reserved thus avoiding misunderstandings and promoting good relations among staff and clients.  Misunderstandings can be caused by differences at the deeper levels of values, roles and assumptions.

At least understand the background of the workforce, the language skills, their educational background, qualifications both here and in a broader sense.

Collaboratively develop and deliver goods or services.  It is about business, not technology, research what is available, involve trading partners, how will it be integrated and then decide on a partner.

Is there a place for honesty, independence, fair pricing and genuine commitment and leaving behind consultants setting unrealistic expectations.

Reputation must be monitored and constantly assessed, particularly in the global economy, in which it is a competitive advantage.  No one knows the dollar value on reputation.  What is know is that it matters it all stakeholders.

Good managers are those who work to advance the interests of the whole group rather than themselves alone or a few talented individuals who they personally mentor.

Rate on financial performance, product quality, innovation, value and reliability, emotional appeal, vision and leadership, workplace environment and social responsibility.

Shared ways of solving problems. No such thing as objective truth, rather a series of ‘paradigm shifts’, describes those changes in science that change the way the world dis understood.  Do you get the best out of people by dictating or encouraging?

There are benefits from different approaches to problem solving, helping people to move beyond negative perceptions and assisting in breaking down barriers that prevent understanding.

Extreme hours degrade health, family life and community involvement, heavy workloads are time pressures that expose employees to such conditions are now recognised as a form of bullying.

Is listening a sign of incompetence, are managers insensitive to the reality around them when people around them can see what is wrong and what to do about a problem are the troublemakers or dissenters being ridiculed and about to leave.

Keep communication and competition between departments open and honest, collaborative discourse.  People tend to expect everyone to communicate the way they do, people communicate differently and experiences with cultural different people with different cultural patterns can lead to more successful communication with understanding and tolerance.

Two main goals in business relationships are extraction of economic value and the creation of long-term loyalty and achieving this takes time, talent and the commitment of resource.

A good business will always focus on clients rather than technology, which is used to enhance service to the client.  Maintaining a current client’s goodwill for repeat business is seen as more cost effective than the unpredictable process of seeking a new client to replace a dissatisfied one. An over all strategy of seeking mutually advantageous outcomes and win-win solution.

Are deals characterised by competition, assertiveness, risk-taking and a direct approach to conflict rather or a trend to value long-lasting relations with solutions that promote the relationship and create opportunities for future partnership, setting a long term view where fluctuations can be tolerated.  The challenge of operating in different cultures with strategies of inclusive, indirect approach, a shared history, a battle, preoccupation with the outcome, confrontational, cultivated, sensitive, convince the other side, consensus, persuasion, argument looking for core values of harmony and cooperation in accommodating each other’s approaches avoiding misjudgements of intention.

Questions that might be asked:  Say a bit about your school, work, business or company? what was the initiative and who was it aimed at?   What happened?  What lesson or lessons did you learn?  What advice would you give to other students. teachers, piers, work colleagues, managers or companies?

Globalisation is a process that can amplify problem say bringing parts of the world closer together. Size is not the determining factor when competing globally; skill is.  An understanding of of customers in different markets, not the ability to mobilise capital or tangible assets, a strategy based on unique knowledge.  What happens when the company becomes too big for its market and no plans for expansion. The removal of competition, merger restrictions and the international economic environment is becoming more hostile.

Corporate intelligence and security or is there a degree of naive and isolationism. Who are the competitors? Annual reports, press cuttings, corporate web sited, brochures and industry market research, talk to customers, bar talk,  industry conferences and speeches often reveal business plans. Need to be able to analyse the information in order to make the critical decisions.

Agents do not buy or sell the product it represents and can be sole, exclusive or non-exclusive and may be paid a fixed fee or remuneration based on sales  Distributors place  orders, takes responsibility for it and for its resale.  They can be a sole, exclusive or non-exclusive distributor and paid by adding a profit margin.  The main terms of an agreement could involve how payments are made which may includes conditions such as the currency of the sale price, who pays, how, when and to whom, what credit terms, penalties for late payments, who is responsible for what duties, clearance, freight, storage, insurance and delivery.  What is the identity of the contracting parties and consider things such as goodwill, intellectual property, place of sale and control of the brand name.  Consider parties, background, terms of appointment, agent and distributor’s obligations, renewal of term, price, orders and lead times, inspection and acceptances, payment, passing of risk and title, effect of standard terms and conditions, warranties, product liability and insurance, intellectual property, advertising and promotion, non-competition, confidentiality, termination, force majeure, jurisdiction and general boilerplate clauses.

Small business are the heart of local communities.  What is their sense of purpose, are they being driven by forced agendas, is there a local backlash against globalisation, do they create diversity, how does community confidence impact on them and do they create significant employment?

Organizational Citizenship Behaviour:  Originally, Organ (1988) defined organizational citizenship behavior as any acts that are discretionary–and not explicitly or directedly recognized by the formal system of performance management-that tends to enhance the functioning and performance of the organization. More recently, however, Organ (1997) refined this definition, conceptualizing organizational citizenship behavior as any form of performance that supports the social or psychological environment in which the work tasks are embedded-a definition that more closely corresponds to contextual performance, as defined by Borman and Motowidlo (1993, 1997).

International best practice including: sustainable success is linked to pursuing long-term goals consistent with core purpose and values, the importance of gaining and maintaining a nominal ‘licence to operate’ which is granted by stakeholder groups, knowledge is the new centre of gravity and the key to harness its potential, managing and measuring stockholder relationships is the key to sustainable success.

Reasons for leaving a job could be people are not talking with each other, no clear goals or direction, communication are bad, no team work, work was not fun, no positive or negative feedback, no motivation resulting in poor productivity.  What to look for in a new job may be open communication, constructive feedback, goals and the ability to verify them, rewards for success, orotundities to speak out and work is fun. When successfully turning around companies that are in difficulty, dismantle the hierarchy and give much more responsibility to the people in their areas of operation.

A co-operative workplace: If you tell me, I will forget; if you show me, I may remember; if you involve me, I will understand.  Successful growth involves excellent managers, leaders, technical knowledge, strategic goals, values, open communication, understand roles and continuous review of performance to add value to any organisation’s performance.  The challenge of moving from a hierarchical, controlled working environment to one based on uncertainty and unpredictability has the challenge to create intellectual capital and derive economic and social value from it.  The relationship between enterprise strategy and industry structure through learning, negotiation and adaption can lead to improved through unpredictable environments.

Individuals in an organisation interactions and combinations can produce varying results, shaping heir culture, learning the sensitivity to know when and how to play with respect to others. The organisation is a reflection of its internal relationships. We start out being independent and they challenge is to move on to interdependence, in which the spirit of sharing and the dynamics of a high-trust environment, mentoring and coaching are all tools to this end, coming from trust, respect, commitment and encouragement. People make up organisations, interpersonal relationships and team efforts. The relationship between different people determines whether the result is a discordant mess or a thing of beauty.  The whole is greater than the sum of the parts, a seamless integration and it is the role of the manager to understand the variables and bringing it all together. Organisations, the people that make up the organisation, need a car vision dn understanding of what has to be achieved.

Our self image is the way we see and hear, our ideas, attitudes and how we feel and respond to others.  It is our physical, emotional, social and intellectual perception of ourselves that has influenced us and given us the skills and knowledge we have in our society.  We develop roles in our families, school, peer groups, friends, sports team, workplace, professional associations that make up our culture and social environment.  Our appearance, skills, abilities, needs, interests, activities, ideas, likes, dislikes, how others see us, attitudes and beliefs influence the self-image that we present to others.

The Johari Window to develop relationships that are satisfying and beneficial by Questioning Yourself, Listening to Feedback from Others, Ask Others About Yourself and Increase Your Open Self.

Diversity can involve learning about your own cultural biases, getting over the fear of making mistakes, understand the importance of relationships and having a higher level of awareness and social responsibility to build better businesses and stronger communication.  Are you being tolerated, are you the one doing the tolerating, it it is more comfortable and not inclusive, as you can be tolerated at a distance and is a form of ostracism.  We tend to make a sense of the work by crating categories from personal experiences, the use of assumptions and generalisations and other sources such as the media which can be based on ignorance and fear. Be aware of the assumptions and question them. Assimilation leaves the other person needing to do the hard work of changing, what about mutual adaptation.

Worker commitment in a climate of change, the effects of technology, globalisation, business consolidation, market fragmentation and a mobile and educated workforce.  Compensation, changing management, training and development, organisational culture, leadership and direction, work/life balance, productivity, pride and retention of people is part of a workplace environment. The hierarchy of motivation is survival, safety, social, esteem, self-actualisation and for companies safety is both physical and psychological, rewards are part of compensation and benefits, affiliation with a sense of belonging to the team conveying a sense of mission, growth for a sense of achievement and positive organisational growth and work/life harmony.  The use of best-practice to foster commitment and retention attending to employees basic needs first, evaluate policies and practices looking at how they meet or exceed expectations and promote development leadership that will motivate workers.

If you give people involvement and empower them, if you give them some sort of control over their work, they will be more satisfied and committed. As a result of that, organisations will perform better. People who report high levels of control also report high levels of satisfaction, commitment and more positive views of management. More control over our lives, giving a greater sense of balance between working and social lives.

Customer relationship management is not an expensive computer package or a substitute for incompetent management.  It is not only saying customer service is important, your actions need to match.  Is the customer’s experience of service directly proportional to the attitude of the person providing the service.  Taking into account business objectives, corporate culture and skill level while focusing and caring so that customers are left feeling emotionally satisfied. The goal is to improve customer satisfaction levels by first improving internal customer relations.  constant quality, on-time delivery, a fair price and lead by example.  Only ever as good as your last job.  Put the customer first, offer good service an duo whatever they can to make the experience of using their product pleasurable and convenient.

A focus on customer value and loyalty. The potential of staff, their creativity and innovation in their ability to respond to the customers.  Understanding people and working in teams Together, Everyone, Achieves More.

Customers, more is better, wealthy is more profitable, no necessarily so. We are creatures of habit, businesses can make it difficult and expensive to change.  The big client can be slow to pay, choose the right customer carefully and consider relying on informal social contracts rather than explicit legal contracts.  What is customer selection criterion, credit check, slow payments choosing for social stability and profitability?

When we feel that the other person is wrong, they are only wrong according to how we see things and they are not necessarily wrong from the town perspectives. Different people see things differently, what is their perspective and reach an agreement rather than accentuating differences.  Mistakes must be made if people are to learn, not to be hunted down, sacked, criticised and punished as change is constant and knowledge is a key leading to inevitably requiring rapid and voluminous learning.  Our judgments come from experience and experience comes from bad judgment, learning through trial and error. Practice is the art of making mistakes, learning from them and progressing. Is it an attitude or skill mistake, allow people to have a go, to grow, to develop and to be able to make a contribution to the future.

How do we sort information into knowledge, are we automatically grade the information we receive by superficial assumption.  We make judgements based on mainstream information, caring, coincidence, accuracy, higher authority, brevity, clarity, expertise does not mean expertise in communication about that subject, generalising from the particular, paradox being both true and false.

People, not technology are behind innovations with flexible, productive and focused workplace relationships that have a focus on customers, supply, leadership, resources and systems for innovation in an environment of continuous improvements of positive change.  It is not a haphazard process, it is a cultural issue, innovative work cultures that take calculated risks. Understanding what drives people when communicating with them. Innovation is about people and creativity, motivating staff, seeking staff input, vision thinking, selecting the ‘right’ staff while supporting and maintain them in a multi-skilling, multi-tasking and efficient team environment.  Look at examining staff needs, matching applicants with job specifications, successful interviewing and introduction and effective supervision.  People have a need for achievement, affiliation and power and this influences their communications.  This would include allowing people to take responsibility giving plenty of feedback, taking care to ask about families, interests and how they feel, and allow them to feel in charge recognising their need to be treated as powerful and informant.

Employers are increasingly conscious of the need to retain talent and experience, replacement is costly.  Some employers seek ways to bond employees to their jobs and provide an environment that has support systems for their personal lives such as shopping services, pre-cooked evening meals, flexible hours, working from home, job sharing, stagger starting and finishing times.  Australian workplace agreements, policies and procedures are required to recognise minimum standards, businesses arrive at arrangements that are cost neutral to them.

Managers need to be able to make sense of warnings, to get beyond questioning the authority of someone sounding a warning; not dismissing them as unacceptable.  Some managers lack the necessary openness and they deal poorly with the implied challenge to their authority.  Risk management based on correlations, trends or other conventional wish management factors are useless for forecasting new and unique risks.  If we know what to look for we could take notice when we get a warning.  A flash of insight and may not have ever done anything remarkable, may not be unusually bright or gifted and are the first to see something going wrong.  They are working in organisations, agencies and companies, most often in the operations.  We are not necessarily good at seeing predictive warnings, they are odd things with often only one person sounding the warning, they will have to explain and we need to understand it. We need to listen.

Management needs the ability to handle, control and organise with authority and skill.  Being responsible for the sense of purpose for those on the journey. The purpose of our work team is?  The purpose of our organisation is?  Be specific and achieve clarity.  The state holders – board of directors, shareholders, senior management, customers, staff, families of staff, suppliers, distributors, government, banks, tax department, industry bodies, environmental protection agencies and so on.

‘And whoever of you will be the chiefest, shall be servant of all’  Mark 10:44

Who ever wrote one draft of a book, or filmed one take of a scene, or wrote one line of perfect code? Socrates: ‘ In knowing the you know nothing, that makes you the smartest of all.’  Never underestimate the power of the conversations in developing create solutions, somewhere to bounce ideas around, test opposing views and mesh concepts. Explore what is possible and not be stuck with what is known, go to the other side of an idea, looking at it from another angle.  Creativity involving a knowledge of tradition and an ability to depart from what has been done before.  Access to knowledge, adding value to knowledge, modelling knowledge and knowledge discovery.

The Help Desk:  What do you think is the problem? Not being listened to.  Repeatedly explaining the problem while being passed like a parcel. They argue back, ‘you are wrong’, ‘you are lying’, ‘your alleged experiences’.  Hang up saying it is the ‘other’ companies problem.  Hang up because the supervisor has been asked for, I’ll just transfer you.  Service organisations tackling customer satisfaction where satisfied and empowered employees are a crucial component in creating quality for customers. What is the criteria for teamwork, individual performances and personal behaviour.  The search for efficiency verses servicing the customer.

In order to develop relationships we need to be aware of the needs people have, how do we apply this to a typical worker and the Maslow Hierarchy of Needs provides a useful guide to help understand the things that are important to others.

What matters is what we do and how we do it, it is always about working with people to get things done.  Leaders set a direction, make it easy for others to follow and encourage them when they do so.  It is about setting direction, easing the way, inviting and encouraging people to do things. Consider style, timing and context considering cultural context which is national, organisational and individual while involving people, asking what they think, seeking their views and they will see it differently because of their involvement.  Need to care about what you do, support your followers, be consistent, stick to your principles and think of others.  Create an emotional link, close communication and contact with your team.

There is no try, only do or do not’  Yoda to Luke Skywalker in Star Wars

Principles of working with other people:

  • Definiteness of Purpose, clear about what we are wanting to achieve, purpose of endeavours, where we are heading, what are we doing and achieving giving a sense of direction.  How strong is it.
  • Burning Desire to Succeed, determination, passion, what is important.  How strong is it, is it in the heart.
  • Clear Plans of Action, knowing what we are going to do.  Flexible, adaptive and whatever it takes. How clear are they?
  • Persistence, stand firm throughout.  Thomas Edison and his team made 10,000 light bulbs that failed. How strong is it?
  • Physical wellbeing, exercise, diet
  • Mental wellbeing alert, clear thinking, concentration
  • Emotional healthy, feeling joy, sadness, elation, despair, fear, anger, compassion, love and empathy
  • Spirituality, integrity, honesty, ethics, trust, moral,s responsibility, accountability
  • Life journey experience

Brands, invented words or words that have nothing to do with the product to help protect other businesses getting a free ride.  They need to stand out from competitors and be able to stop competitors from using brands that are confusingly or deceptively similar.  Look at intellectual property, trademarks, copyright, patents, trade secrets, registered designs, business name, company name, trading name, domain name.  Deregulation and globalisation has transformed the industrial landscape with falling costs and increasing reach of technology.  Understanding and managing attention, marketing which is moving away from selling products and is now building brands, innovation.  Reputation and customer service is becoming more valuable, emotional economy, a household name, mass customisation.  A distinguishing and unique function, customer intimacy wanting control of the customer’s mind and the mix of marketing and customer satisfaction.  The need to understand and appeal to customers.  There more successful you are the harder it is to change your business.

Thought patterns from a life in organisations derived from the industrial age are fast running out of steam, proving unsustainable, creating a world not worth living in and things are shifting. The philosophical shift from an old story that the world existed as mere resources to serve human progress, to learning from nature with sustainable solutions, mimicking nature’s designs and processes.  This is representing a fundamentally rethinking of the basis of products and services around the principles of sustainability that are more efficient and effective.  The world wastes nothing, improving resource productivity with energy efficiency which are environmentally responsible.

Implicating company uniforms and grooming policies to improve corporate identity so as to present a professional image, improve corporate morale and to involve staff in the decision-making process about what it will be, giving staff ownership and addressing issues such as who is paying for it, will they be the same, are there any safety issues and who will wear it.  Consulting staff, involved them in every step leads to committed employees being proud and professional as part of their work ethic .

Efficient processes can start to dominate the workforce and limit the development and use of new ideas leading to rigidity and inflexibility. The play between process efficiency and brand strength and knowledge.  There is no escaping the fact that most work is routine, efficient repetition, revenue creation, repeated financial discipline and repeated innovation. New forms of knowledge are not known and cannot be controlled.

Industry and economic environments change, have a clear vision or purpose for the future giving an understanding for the need for change, seeing it as a human community.  Management demonstrating the companies behaviour such as respect for people and working together.  Communicate strategies for direction and leadership gaining respect and trust, creating an environment for open and honest communication.  Diversity and conflict to improve operational performance, that has leadership and coaching so it can be managed and integrated, relationship building.  Create new paradigms, value the differences between behaviour with a common purpose and a value-based structure.  If you are going to get on then you need to know what is important. Know what resources are needed and avoid conflicting stories.  As frustration grows so does disruptive behaviour and reduced morale.  Waiting is sometimes a better strategy than action. Need to know what you are doing and why, and what is expected.  Make the tough decisions, communicate the reasons, enact change, monitor and amend where necessary.  The manages need to be in a position to support the consequences, lead not only act to ensure the co-opeartion and support of staff.  Collaborative processes increase levels of involvement and ownership, build teams, increase confidence resulting in accepting more responsibility and accountability. Manage from the bottom-up and top-down, leadership from the top-down.

The flow of processes in a business, from the identification of customer needs to the satisfaction of those needs, the information network between people. Knowledge management techniques, making tiger best-practice informally developed in one part of a company more widely available insuring against the loss of critical knowledge through staff turnover. The confusion between information, organised data and knowledge which requires a knower, with the acquisition of knowledge being dependent on culture and motivation. Management culture can prevent the upward flow of worker feedback.  Empowering workers without being prepared for responsibility, they are uncomfortable with the new role and their managers eventually take ack the authority, making the process a failure.  The real failure lies in not making the organisational change required to implement it.  Over-controlled companies choke workers, whereas under-controlled companies break into small groups pulling in different directions. The true value of people with their social networks and knowledge.  People not technology drive innovation, based on flexible, productive and focused workplace relationships. Leadership must come from the top.  Innovative businesses create an environment unleashing the talent of their employees integrating seamlessly into the organisational culture.

Knowledge about the commercial efficacy of technical change will be necessary to develope an acute knowledge of the process of turning innovation into commercial reality.  To develop an acute knowledge of the process of turning innovation into commercial reality and a knowledge of how systems operate including the process of converting development into products.  An understanding of how change affects the whole system. The ability to know why type of solutions is appropriate, when to use withe slow-teck or high-tech solutions with an understanding of ethics and public perceptions in a global economy.

Artists push boundaries because they can, but change for change’s sake is not good business practice.  Creativity and innovation in a business environment are about finding new ways of performing tasks or discovering new product to create revenue.

Economy is more graphically spread and more connected with a changing relationship between the economy of speed and the economy of scale producing shorter life cycles.  Having a knowledge of people, understanding people and being observant together with being assertive. With this knowing how to be efficient in action and thought while knowing what it is you do not know.

Are our minds in combat with the unexpected creating negative connotations, life is an adventure with challenges providing our minds with new experiences.  The unexpected always happens, we do not always know the outcome and plan the best we can.  Believe in yourself and trust in others to deal with the unexpected and the courage to make decisions when the outcome is unknown, are critical.

Is the emerging world order socially beneficial with a business sector having a role in an equitable society.  Corporate socially responsible activities are not only for a  commercial advantage also for sustainability and social health and being environmentally and socially accountable.  Corporate social responsibility being involved in resolving social issues and developing a relationship between business and the society that they depend on.


Starts with basic needs like food and water and move up through increasingly higher-levels needs like safety, belongingness, esteem and self-fulfilment.  Until each need on the hierarchy was met, people would not move onto the next level.  Ones a lower level need is met, it ceases to be a motivator.

Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is a theory in psychology proposed by Abraham Maslow in his 1943 paper “A Theory of Human Motivation” in Psychological Review. Maslow subsequently extended the idea to include his observations of humans’ innate curiosity. His theories parallel many other theories of human developmental psychology, some of which focus on describing the stages of growth in humans. Maslow used the terms “physiological”, “safety”, “belonging” and “love”, “esteem”, “self-actualization”, and “self-transcendence” to describe the pattern that human motivations generally move through. The goal of Maslow’s Theory is to attain the sixth level of stage: self transcendent needs.

HUMANITY  in  BUSINESS Creating a Leadership, Revolution that Supports, Authentic Leaders to Create, An Engaged and Purposeful Business

How do we process infmornation and make decisions

  • how we see the world
  • what we hear
  • touch and how we feel about the world

Culturally diverse teams may need time and support to overcome misunderstandings caused by different styles of communication.  Successfully managed diverse teams can bring economic benefits, where tasks are complex and open-ended a range of different solutions to problems maybe required.

Companies sustainability strategies relates to energy use, water consumption, pollution control, workplace health and safety, ethics and anti-corporate activism.  Leadership decisions need to take into account the whole context of power and politics, management takes place in context, not only legalism and economic rationalism, also including ethnicity with racial and religious diversity.  In the end it comes back to the performance of the business, thus leaving things the way they are. Where is the accountability in the drive for maximum efficiency, typically measured according to financial metrics such as return on capital employed, or return on equity and considered separate from political debates. The perpetual demand to improve productivity and competitiveness.

Possible realities of the new workplace where people maybe responsible for their own future, blurring divisions between labor and capital, clear divisions between bosses and workers or workers owning the means of production, shareholder activism, socially engineering management by mandating quotas.  Is it an obstacle to be overcome or an  opportunity to be exploited?  The benefits of diversity for business performance and an understanding of the overall context.  Politics is not external, it can be integral to proper understanding of the commercial and cultural environment, informed decisions. Political influence on the workplace will be changing continually and can be misplaced.

Communal and co-opeartive environments where the work and rewards are shared and the ethos of communal giving has been retained as opposed to societies that are self-interested members functioning as islands of individuals.  The sharing and equality of purpose, the giving of oneself with its motivation not being self-salvation by acknowledging the importance of causes and being part of the economic, socio-cultural and political context of the society that it serves.

Are companies rewarding people with promotion because of their technical skills rather than their ability to manage people, are they good people managers?  Isolation is one of the biggest cripplers of people working on their own. Sometimes people need someone to challenge them, help them work through the obstacles they perceive as being in their way, to believe in them more than they believe in themselves, listen only to them, has their best interests at heart and ensures they remain accountable to their goals. People who have a deep understanding of people and behavioural change, expertise in adult learning, understanding boundaries, presents well, emanates credibility and quickly able to create a rapport.  An ability to be confident and clear about values and ethics, discretion, sensitivity to competing interests and a good understanding of business with the capacity to think strategically or tune into the day to day business.  Marketability of skills, where they need to develop and career navigation processes. Leadership skills for more effective leadership, stronger direction and communication in doing they job more effectively while being better able to lead and coach their staff.  Know the difference between coaching and counselling, identify and address skill gaps, provide guidance and encouragement needed to improve performance as a coach instead of as the boss, to build trust and respect and increased people’s productivity, commitment and initiative. Build leadership skills to be the coach of a team, to have strong basic human relations, communication and people skills, good organisers and be seen as role models by their peers. The need for extensive experience in their area of expertise, be able to establish a strong rapport, have strong ethics, understand confidentiality and is also a less structured means of learning.  Create an environment in which learning is valued and encouraged by recognising workplace activities and events a s potential sources of learnt, encouraging staff to reflect on both positive and negative job experiences and identify learning goals that can be achieved through everyday activities.

Monitor trading partners, get to know and understand them, understand some of the signs of financial distress, insolvency, mergers and corporate collapses.  Consider dishonoured cheques, broken promises, lame excuses, false assurances, frequently straying outside the trading terms to which both parties have agreed, request to pay in instalments, adverse credit check. Does the board have a good spread of skills, go about its business with an acceptable degree of formality, emphasise prestigious projects rather than profitable ones, are priorities dictated by sectional interests or do they reflect what is good for the business as a whole, are finances mingled to sup0port what is not producing income, confusion about turnover, profit and cashflow, rely too much on historical relationships, remuneration for top executives excessive, obsessive commitment for growth with little regard fro profitability and core competencies, emergence of new competitors, changing market, increased exposure to environmental and other government regulation, excessive reliance on one or two suppliers or customers, failure to distinguish in accounts between profit contributions by different operations divisions. Terms of trade may include a ‘retention of title’ clause, unpaid stock can be returned or payed for.

The goal of managing reward systems is to achieve maximum results with the remuneration resources available. There is the blurring of blue and white-collar workers and moving towards multi-skilling and teamwork with an emphasis on creative thinking, productivity, loyalty, responsibility and problem solving making it more difficult to assign a given rate. Needing to consider the quality and amount of work done, employee’s age, length of service, risk-taking to attract and retain the best people. For the employee reward can include job satisfaction, satisfactory working conditions, development opportunities, flexible hours and a sense of community. A motivated person generally takes initiatives in ensuring timely completion while discovering better way of doing things, self-disciplined and the ability to do a task regardless of advantageous or adverse circumstances, including overcoming lethargy, tiredness, illness and disappointment. Take into account the organisation’s strategy, profitability, conditions of the labor market, government regulations and broader economic trends. Rewards can include salaries, commissions, health care, staff discounts, performance bonuses, vehicle allowances, insurance plans, pensions plans, share options, educations grants, paid holidays, housing and air travel. Rewards taking into account small improvements and combined improved performance of many individuals having a far greater effect on results than jus the efforts of the exceptional few. Involvement breeds loyalty.

Globalisation, multinational companies with an interest on local preferences.  Establish a workable global structure considering the integration of all functions, hire globally considering a manager with an aptitude for innovation, willingness to take risks, ability to communicate ideas and turn them into action, over come complexities such as local bureaucracies, command of several languages and knowledge of several cultures.  The need to consider schooling of children, employment opportunities for spouses, effects of cultural differences and language barriers and to love cultural differences, training for cross-cultural competency, avoid parochialism and market arrogance.  Wage slave, contractor, consultant or part-time less on ‘owned’ employees and more on building diverse talented networks, creating a virtual workforce.  Managing remote workers, regular and open communication, isolation, the company culture and the pace of this virtual work environment requiring ambitious, flexible, ethical and self-motivated people that do not need to be micro-managed.  There may be may many internal organisations or groups, such as technology, finance, operations and business groups and each with a stake.  Project manager, leader or manager or are they the same and will cultural and communication differences between companies further complicate things.  There has not been successful wealth distribution, globalisation is based on materialism, market materialism, it is not apolitical an does not have an implied value system.

The 48 Laws of Power  is the first book by American author Robert Greene.

Power Rules Versus Laws of Power Robert Greene’s “The 48 Laws of Power” (Viking Press, 1998) also draws on Machiavelli’s ruthlessness.  Greene’s book includes, for instance, laws that teach you how to manipulate people (“Law 12: Use Selective Honesty and Generosity to Disarm your Victim”) and how to be merciless (“Law 15: Crush Your Enemy Totally”).  By mastering the laws however, one can use them for good.  For instance, one can learn to avoid manipulation (“Law 12”) and to be merciful (“Law 15”).

When making acquisitions be clear about strategic intent; assess the top management team; determine the approach to integration; involve the right tea; create an integration plan around where the benefits will be realised; resolve cultural issues; and develop a communications plan.

An understanding of how change and risk occur, essential planning and organising, the use of caution and boldness and the taming of excess and over-capacity required hard decisions.

If an employee has a problem the company has a problem.  Management by objectives, have a set of measurable objective, do not record the hours just how well the objectives are met.  Corporate objectives involve the whole company in the process, share the draft major objectives, review and feedback. Team-based companies, mutually dependent, individual and team incentives, fair and consistent, clear and agreed objectives, goal setting, track adjustments, both a good job and ability to resolve perceived environmental problems, less discussion, people taking ownership of tasks, minimal reviews, open discourse without flattening people, identifying obstacles or root causes and working to resolve them with action items and follow through.

Managing Conflict – Thomas Kilmann Conflict Mode Instrument

Kenneth Thomas and Ralph Kilmann based their conflict style inventory on the managerial grid developed by Blake and Mouton. They arranged five conflict resolution approaches on scales of two individual characteristics: assertiveness and cooperativeness.

These two basic dimensions of behavior define five different modes for responding to conflict situations:

  1. Competing is assertive and uncooperative—an individual pursues his own concerns at the other person’s expense. This is a power-oriented mode in which you use whatever power seems appropriate to win your own position—your ability to argue, your rank, or economic sanctions. Competing means “standing up for your rights,” defending a position which you believe is correct, or simply trying to win.
  2. Accommodating is unassertive and cooperative—the complete opposite of competing. When accommodating, the individual neglects his own concerns to satisfy the concerns of the other person; there is an element of self-sacrifice in this mode. Accommodating might take the form of selfless generosity or charity, obeying another person’s order when you would prefer not to, or yielding to another’s point of view.
  3. Avoiding is unassertive and uncooperative—the person neither pursues his own concerns nor those of the other individual. Thus he does not deal with the conflict. Avoiding might take the form of diplomatically sidestepping an issue, postponing an issue until a better time, or simply withdrawing from a threatening situation.
  4. Collaborating is both assertive and cooperative—the complete opposite of avoiding. Collaborating involves an attempt to work with others to find some solution that fully satisfies their concerns. It means digging into an issue to pinpoint the underlying needs and wants of the two individuals. Collaborating between two persons might take the form of exploring a disagreement to learn from each other’s insights or trying to find a creative solution to an interpersonal problem.
  5. Compromising is moderate in both assertiveness and cooperativeness. The objective is to find some expedient, mutually acceptable solution that partially satisfies both parties. It falls intermediate between competing and accommodating. Compromising gives up more than competing but less than accommodating. Likewise, it addresses an issue more directly than avoiding, but does not explore it in as much depth as collaborating. In some situations, compromising might mean splitting the difference between the two positions, exchanging concessions, or seeking a quick middle-ground solution.

Seven areas of business performance that contribute to competitive advantage are time management systems, quality and service delivery, information exchange, strategy and vision, process orientation and flow, employee management including incentive programs, overview and control.  An important aspect of planning is the support and education of employees.  The ability of an organisation to adapt to change is influenced by the success of quality improvement techniques, the influences on the organisation and the commitment by management and staff while taking into consideration the intensity among the different variables, employee motivation, top management involvement, level of complexity among the different variables, commitment of top managers to the process of change and the level of resistance to change.

What Kind of Follower Are You?


  • what constitutes an appropriate way of opening and closing a meeting
  • will the senior person act as chair or is this determined in another way
  • is there an agenda and will it be followed in the order set down
  • is punctuality important
  • are decisions to be made or is it for an airing of views
  • how are turns to speak organised
  • what is it suitable and allowable to say
  •  what constitutes a persuasive argument in this setting
  • differences in intonation

Paradigms of Management

  • organisational learning v organisational discipline
  • virtuous circles v vicious circles
  • flexible organisations v inflexible organisations
  • management leaders v management administrators
  • open communication v distorted communication
  • markets v hierarchies
  • product development driven by core competencies v product development driven by strategic business units
  • strategic learning capacities are widespread v strategic learning occurs at the apex of the organisation
  • assumption that most employees are trustworthy v assumption that most employees are untrustworthy
  • most employees are empowered v most employees are disempowered
  • local knowledge of all employees is critical to success and creativity creates its own prerogative v local knowledge of all employees must be disciplined by managerial prerogative

Underperformance:  if performed satisfactorily in the past there may be some personal difficulty, never performed to expectations then consider training or is it the employment screening process, did not understand what was expected, have managers superimpose their own requirements and expectations that have not been explained adequately.  Has it been made clear what is expected? Have the resources and time to achieve expectations been provided? Were reasonable expectations set? Has management conduct been misleading? Have conflicting messages been given to create confusion?

Some Do’s to consider:

  • be patient
  • be humble
  • be accountable
  • be strong
  • be specific
  • be totally open
  • use ‘I’ statements

Some Do not’s to consider:

  • push too hard
  • come across as a know-it-all
  • be judgemental
  • take the bait if provoked
  • be mysterious
  • hide anything
  • use people as bad examples

Conducting the Negotiation

  • set the climate
  • determine structure
  • use non-defensive communication
  • use silence
  • listen
  • watch the non-verbals
  • check assumptions
  • close the transaction
  • get it in writing

Managing Diversity

  • Organisational vision with clear statements of intent, motivations, integration into culture/organisation
  • Auditing and assessment of needs with the examination of organisational systems and procedures, monitoring workforce composition
  • Top management support that is active, visible and has allocated resources
  • Planning and objectives that are relevant to the business with a coherent programme of action relating to diversity initiative implementation
  • Clear communication with an awareness of policy, issues, openness, availability of information and training
  • Clear accountability of individuals, organisational systems and procedures
  • Coordination of activity with a clarity of roles, responsibilities within and between departments
  • Evaluation that can judge the success of the diversity program

Benefits of Effective Management of Culturally Diverse Staff

  • Business strategy has greater productivity and a competitive edge
  • Access to talent making it easier to recruit, promote and reduce costs associated with turnover and absenteeism
  • Flexibility is enhanced
  • Teams promote creativity, innovation, improved problem-solving and better decision-making
  • Clients have improved services, increased sales to members of minority cultural groups and better public image
  • Quality is improved
  • Work relations with improving moral, job satisfaction and working environments

East versus West Expectations – different expectations

  • based on values of independence and non-imposition v based on values of in-group interdependence, mutual advantage, favours and obligations, assistance and protection
  • limited and defined by law and contract v not bound by law or contract, fluid and responsive
  • time and attention regulated v time and attention not calculated
  • a line between self and others v a circle drawn around we

Spend time building relationships rather than the ‘down to business’ attitude. Long lasting bonds that incur obligations and responsibilities that are entered into with due care.  Maintaining face, race to the contract or relationship that are responsive to situations. Meeting obligations. Values are reflected in a behavioural choice and moral qualities associated with that behaviour and avoiding an ethnocentric position which defines one’s own values as superior.  Good moral character, consideration for others, interpersonal sensitivity, empathy, social acceptance, dignity and consideration as opposed to mendacity, irresponsibility and low family values.

Points to Consider

  • stating opinions directly before sounding out others’ potential reactiosn
  • being too task-centred
  • agenda-driven meetings
  • schedules and timetables
  • over-riding cues and hints meant to indicate negative reactions
  • not giving enough time to building relationships
  • not seeking consensus especially before major meetings
  • interrupting and not pausing after someone’s turn
  • using overly-animated facial expressions and gestures


‘I am not discouraged, because every wrong attempt discarded is another step forward’  Thomas A Edison

  • success if a function of good judgement
  • good judgement is a function of experience
  • experience is a function of poor judgement and making mistakes
  • mistakes come from taking actions, getting feedback and learning

If you do what you have always done, you will get what you have always go.


‘the task of a leader is to get his people from where they are to where they have not been’  Henry Kissinger

To be a leader, people have to choose to follow you because of the qualities you project.

Leadership is not easily defined.  Is it politics?  Is it an art?  Are there specific tools?  Is it in the eye of the beholder, perceptions?  What do we want from leaders?  Do they need to excel in a rapidly changing and complex society?  Is it more or less involvement?  Can it be learnt in a book or practical life skills and experiences or both? Is it lessons learnt?

Gain an understanding of the general operating environment. Listen, ask a lot of questions, find out what is going on, ask people about their current vision, calibrate the current level of team passion, team culture.  Know what you have inherited, how has this been managed before.

Absorb surrounding, analyse actions and apply innovations.  They need to be able to operate across all elements, not just financial management, also aspects to do with customers, business processes, innovation and people management.  Leaders need to be role models for good communication as well as being honest and frank with staff rather than playing games, having hidden agendas or getting-around-the-bush and playing the organisational politics and also have high standards of personal and professional ethics.

Learning to manage people is the skill that is most difficult, the need to understand why it is necessary and why it is good, much more questioning and challenging. The need to take a positive approach to problems in the good times as well as the tough times and being a good team player with the need to follow up to see how successful the decisions are. Respond effectively to challenges is far easier when equipped with a clear sense of what is being achieved overall while maintaining a confidence in abilities.  Breaking down pre-conceived ideas takes time, patience and a lot of tact and diplomacy.  Meet as many people as possible, know who to approach or call, be approachable, help each other with issues and challenges, assist with ideas on how to approach various situations while assisting individual team members to achieve their personal goals.  Think about you act and handle situations taking a team of people that understand when chaining strategies, trust the decisions and can be trusted and are there for each other.  Pushing forward when being stalled or under pressure, eliminate red tape so people can contribute and add value, get trusted advice, honesty and make final decisions without being influenced by emotions and personal agendas. There is always more than one solution, do not get too close, stay objective, it is about learning from mistakes, earning respect and there is no one formula.

Does each person in the team understand what is expected of them.  Are the properly enrolled in the game?

  • clear contribution contract
  • criteria by which they will be judged
  • performance standards
  • clear understanding of work to be done
  • supported empowered to achieve results
  • supported culture and systems for empowerment to achieve results
  • are they able to do the job, have the ability and skills
  • providing the tools
  • do they want to do the job, motivated
  • have they been given the chance to do the job with support systems and culture
  • what is motivating them, enthusiasm
  • describe the vision, clearly defining, something to move towards
  • explain the plans, do-create a team vision and comprehensive set of actions
  • set budget targets
  • personal and joint ownership of plans

10 Tips to Becoming a Good Leader

  • always remember leadership is a service
  • actions speak louder than words
  • leadership is a responsibility
  • listen to others’ needs and concerns
  • be approachable
  • have confidence in yourself and others
  • be committed to the cause
  • lead by example
  • encourage, inspire and motivate others
  • display integrity and humility

Self-Leadership is where you learn through theory, by doing and by sharing or blending learning.  Set up an action plan for continuous improvement, identify where you stand, you competencies, core values, challenges, ambitions and how you can evolve. Use coaching to get to know and understand yourself better, harness you skills that correspond to your values and strengths while facilitating significant personal development.

25 Ways to Stop feeling Overworked and Overwhelmed – Leadership Nouveau

  • begin each day by doing your most difficult task first, set a timer for 30 min to begin with.
  • be proactive and get organised, clear at the end of the day and list 3 most important things for tomorrow
  • manage you energy, give off positive energy and focus on building and growing something new
  • take one day at a time, yesterday and tomorrow and life gets overwhelmingly complicated
  • tame perfectionism, let go it is an illusions
  • get over feeling like everything is so important, go with your own flow
  • remind yourself that you are good enough, keep a success journal, success in your mind
  • be mindful while you work, distractions to float out of your awareness like a passing cloud, productive not busy
  • shift your perspective, mix things up, change your view
  • breathe, to connect with your centre and present moment
  • make time for quiet, maybe do something differently or change instead of distraction and busyness
  • make a thought list, write down thoughts, need to do, want to do, ideas, distracting thoughts and go back later
  • share a load, delegate and allow others to feel needed
  • see suffering as a choice, overwhelming is an addiction and an illusion, an irrational way of living
  • flip your self-tank from negative to positive, manage self-talk and feelings will change
  • be grateful for what you have now, wanting is the future
  • do not judge yourself, own your strengths
  • let go of the need to feel important, it is a trap
  • make self-care a priority, tell the world you are one-of-a-kind
  • commit to a healthy lifestyle, exercise, choose real food, sleep, eat regularly
  • do what brings you joy, stop the overwork and overwhelm
  • make Sunday a fun-day, refill the bucket
  • be generous, give to those who cannot pay you back someone who can never repay you
  • make time to connect with others face to face, with people that matter
  • spend more time with the right people, also embrace and embody who you want to be, unconditionally
  • afterthoughts, identify what is important to you, eliminate as much as you possibly can of everything else

The real reason workers quit their jobs

Why do people quit? Wharton’s Adam Grant and members of Facebook’s HR team recently conducted an analysis of workers who remained at the social networking giant and those who left. They discovered that those who stayed were far more likely to enjoy their work, feel like their jobs utilized their strengths, and believe they were building skills that would help them later in their careers. The team found that when managers can tailor a job to a given worker’s passions, talents, and work-life priorities — rather than force a staffer into a preconceived role — they end up with more satisfied, more committed employees.


AUTOCRATIC do not listen, make decisions and if the rabble do not like it, tough.  Not proactive, look after themselves, like the power and it is satisfying not needing to justify themselves to anyone.  The group runs of fear, buck-passing so no one gets lined up and shot. When the autocrat is bump´d off there is dancing in the streets.

LAISSEZ-FAAIRE are wishy-washy weaklings, busy leasing everyone to look the nice guy. There is a power vacuum, lots of self-appointed heirs jostle for power and run on anger and insidious contempt for the weakness of the leader.

DEMOCRATIC the leader is respected and respectable, has dignity and not besotted with power.  They are approachable and human, authority is earned and given to a leader of people.  Some, but not necessarily all, decisions are made by consensus.  Flexibility within the system, do not have fragile egos and rulers can bent according to common sense and humanity.  Communication is such that people know where they stand, what is expected of them and what they can get in return.

POWER of VISION  everyone interprets words differently.  When everyone is involved ownership and enthusiasm increases.  Vision with Action, a real sense of making a difference.  Creating a vision encourages innovation, creativity and diversity of thinking where people can work together to achieve the dream.  A positive tension management style improved motivation and team work, co-creating a powerful vision.  What people will gravitate to a powerful vision rather than job or positive description?

‘Force is all conquering, bit its victories are short lived’  AbrahamLincoln

Leadership Tip #2: How matching communication styles can help you succeed

As a leader, working with others will help you achieve your goals. The relationships you build and nurture can literally make you, or break you.

Building relationships takes more than sharing pleasantries; firstly, you need to know yourself. As easy as it sounds it can be a challenging task to be honest about your strengths and weaknesses. I have tools to help you with this in Leadership Tip #1.

Just as you understand yourself, you also need to understand those you want to lead, and your relationship with them. If knowing yourself is a foundation, then knowing others helps to build the walls.

PEOPLE and PERSONALITIES – our self image is reflected in our communication with others showing how we see and value ourselves.  The need to build productive relationships, develop self-awareness, understanding and a flexible attitude to the needs and desires of others.

People react differently to the same external environment.  How am I going to act in the world – active, cautious, reserved, people oriented or more task oriented.

Behaviours are influenced by three major areas.  Thoughts and feelings, power of values and beliefs and how they influence our thoughts and feelings and thus motivate our behaviour.  People are driven by different needs and will do anything to get their fundamental needs met


DOMINANT ‘D’ control and result, fear of loss of control, little less sensitive to people.  Push hard to get the job done and sometimes ruffle a few feathers in the process.  Fear loss of control.  Keep moving, talk, decide and act. Tends to become dictatorial. Make sure they have a clear oath forward with a set of action plans to achieve results.

INFLUENCES ‘I’ people oriented and active, talking a lot, moving around and meeting people, do not like being ignored. Given social recognition and not subject to public rejection or correction. Friendly, optimistic with a preliminary chat, giving them praise, recognition and a chance to shine.  More excited and talkative in fear of social rejection and loss of face. Do not ignore.

STEADINESS  ‘S’ quieter by nature, fabulous people on a team, aware of and care for the well being of those around them.   Strong need for acceptance and stability.  Plan necessary changes step by step, fear rapid change. They are more observant, perceptive and sensitive requiring calm.  Slow down, basic friendly introductions, needing stepping stones.  Can withdraw, look for stability.

CONSCIENTIOUSNESS ‘C’ work long hours, detailed oriented, conscientious, accuracy, get it right, quality and detail. Fear is criticism and being wrong.  Be calm, not pushy, specific and task edge needing detail.  Can fall silent, withdrawn, then leave which is better than arguing and being wrong.

We are all mixtures, how we approach challenges and adjust my DISC chart to match the person I am dealign with.  Be flexible.  More warmly people or more cooly task, more active by nature or more reserved, think about their needs and fears, establish and maintain rapport in good times and under pressure.  Need to make the right rapport choices and meet those needs, having the maturity to meet others’s needs instead of your own.

Introverts and Extroverts

Task Focus and People Focus

DISC is a behavior assessment tool based on the DISC theory of psychologist William Moulton Marston.  There are also DISC personality tests.

Is fun the most important thing.

  • Is this person fun to be with, a person like me, do they help me get or be what I want, do they make me feel good about myself, are they trustworthy?
  • Is this person doom and gloom, bitch and moan and groan and unity, too keen, a user.0.

Find Out What Type of Person You Are:

FIND OUT WHAT TYPE OF PERSON YOU ARE  have some fun with this link


  • forgive themselves
  • do not say yes unless you really want to
  • do not seek perfection
  • focus on solutions
  • avoid asking ‘what if’


  • stay positive
  • eat
  • sleep
  • exercise
  • meditate
  • ride the way (wave)
  • squash negative talk

Goals need to be measurable and achievable.  They need to shift as you progress.

INTENT how strong is your intent to succeed.  When times are tough can you get in touch with your will power and summon the intent to reach forward towards you goals and the vision

ATTITUDE how do you react to resistance aliens, when being attacked controlling my emotional state. Maintain an attitude of belief in myself, guard your attitude.

RESPONSIBILITY  it lies with me, clean out emotional baggage, commitments register.

PARADIGMS  are a mental program that have almost exclusive control over your habitual behaviour and almost all of your behaviour is habitual. A paradigm that we leave in control is like an “operating system” on which our mental processes run.

Paradigms help us to interpret, define and engage in the world around us. Without our paradigms we would constantly be struggling to determine and define what we see, what we hear and what we should do about it. Our paradigms help us to move through our lives seamlessly.


  • How many duties do I perform
  • How many hours
  • Guilt about time spent
  • Someone else takes my credit
  • incommunicative authoritarian supervision
  • Boss treats you unfairly
  • Unrewarding
  • Feel unappreciated or unfulfilled

Taking Responsibility

  • what I want
  • define goals
  • priorities
  • forethought
  • planning
  • my own decisions
  • adequate compensation
  • privacy

Life priorities  – work, position, money, success, family, happens, relationships taking on more than can sensibly handle, consider: behaviour, attitude, circumstances, procedure, planning, emotional, physical, decision making, time, control, self, social, change, lifestyle, workload.

Stress – change the stressful things, change the way I look at them, how I perceive them.

I contribute to my emolyers’s wealth, power position, career, advancement, the business is for profit, for the boss’s benefit.  Is my role extremely valuable?  Is it ‘them’ and ‘us’ which contribut5es to distrust and tension.

Employer categories,

  • creators – people greatest asset, how can we improve
  • cutters – people are my greatest overhead, cut role or what they earn
  • undecideds

Saying ‘NO’ does not present you as lazy anti-social, negative or uncooperative.  Present as someone who is efficient and in control, exilian why I am saying NO. Establish priorities, rationalising your refusal.  Think about tasks I have to do, time allocated for them and order of priority.

What information do I need, gather the information I need then act on it.  Act like you have control, control myself, my actions, my responses, my attitudes and my perceptions. Have total involvement.  The negatives can be fear, anxiety, ambition, guilt, ego, insecurity, lack of focus, competitiveness, envy, lust, anger.

Planning what I want to achieve and a blueprint for this, make a decision.  Look at detailed job description, specifications and measurement criteria.


“Knowledge acquired by systematic study”  The Macquarie Dictionary


“A branch of learning….Familiarity gained by sight, experience or report.”  The Macquarie Dictionary

PORTAL “A door, gate or entrance, especially one of imposing appearance.” The Macquarie Dictionary.

Clever staff give great results, learning can be an important part of building effective knowledge management capability.  Continued education and professional development of staff is the only way to capitalise on the increasingly shorter strategic window for business opportunities and is critical in maintaining competitive advantage.

The need for a holistic strategy for identifying critical knowledge areas, sufficient attention to prioritising knowledge management investments and deployment and an over-emphasis on the use of technologies to support various knowledge processes.  Aiming to foster collaboration and delivering the right information to the right person at the right time, enhancing knowledge creation and retention of staff. Learning or education portals are increasingly being established as a means to aggregate, identify and deliver appropriate learning material for knowledge workers.

Portals serve as a common place, bringing together the courses, facilitators, recognised intellectual property and industry knowledge in a specific domain or business process.

Learning Models:

  • blended learning, a mix of static and interactive material with synchronous and asynchronous communications between the learner and the instructor or facilitator during a learning session
  • live learning or collaborative learning is web hosting of a real time seminar or conference for participants at more than one location
  • simulation, enables learners to engage in game playing of pre-constructed scenarios.  The simulation system assists participants to learn by observing and analysing participants’ actions and consequences, as well as providing feedback at various decision points in the process


When managing people they are crystal clear about what is required and expected while contributing to achieve personal and team success.  Are staff able to to do the job with adequate skills and abilities to win?  Can they achieve the organisation’s vision.

Define the value and assessment criteria and performance standards in the work to be done.  Different customers, people and groups may have different value criteria.

Have logical and predictable standards of performance evaluation, define the rules of the game.  Is the game understood?  Let’s achieve that vision. Do they know the rules?  Do they want to?  Are they being denied the chance to play the game?

List the work to be done, a summary.  Do they want to do the job, are they motivated?  Can they be flexible and creative with their work?

Are management giving them the chance to perform supported by excellent systems and culture as part of a success oriented win/win culture.  Providing people with a plan of action, purpose, vision, passion, motivation and enthusiasm.

Many performance problems are caused by sloppy, inefficient systems.  What systems are letting the team down?  What is working really well?

Staff are accountable and responsible for their contributions and management’s role is to support and empower them.  Able to review, know strengths, maintain self-esteem.

Revisiting Colin Powell’s 13 Rules of Leadership

Low Able To and High Want To need significant and regular attention, can be time consuming.

Low Able To and Low Want To can be a real problem and maybe not able to carry passengers. Detailed instruction and constant support, encouragement and fire up. Is it poor management or traumatic life journey.

High Able To and Low Want To confront their difficulties, support and encouraging. Do not tolerate the victim game.

High Able To and High Want To delegate more, still need clear goals.

Shit happens, not necessarily the person, focus on the systems, good supportive in the way organisations operate.  Inefficient sloppy systems cause mistakes and problems, moral dives and has a negative effect on the team culture. When the problem spans a number of systems there can be no one to fixe it. Can be a real battle needing tenacity and passion. Work back asking what happened before that.

‘Little by Little does the Trick’ Aesop

‘Perfection is attained by slow degrees, she required the hand of time’ Voltaire


Vision only achieved with motivated teams.

Is the team prepared for all eventualities?  Persistent when suffering unreasonable setbacks.  Gaining their help in achieving the vision with communication, understanding, optimise cooperation, sincere interest, passion and understanding where people are coming from and what they want from their association.  We are all different,

  • Reliability, do what I say and I and going to keep commitments, show up when I say I will and can people rely on me
  • Openness to give and receive feedback, listening
  • Acceptance for who they are, most people do the best they can in the circumstances which they find themselves.
  • Straight forwardness, say what I mean, do what I say, integrity, honesty, truth

Successful teams need a mixture.

The culture of a team require trust and assertion building win/win environments.

Great leaders drive great organizations and great organizations produce great results. On the other hand, less than stellar results are typically produced by organizations with less than stellar leadership, begging the question, “What are the differences between winning and losing leadership styles and traits?”

Low Trust/Low Assertion – lose/lose:  no one speaks and weak decisions or nod decision are made

High Assertion/Low Trust – win/lose: dog  eat dog, strong and powerful dominate.  The nice guys finishes last, if you cannot take the head do not stand near the fire.

High Turst/Low Assertion – win/lose: not enough ability to confront conflict or speak up and real issues not being addressed.  They do not care about trust, simmer takes all and you are taken out.

High Trust/High Assertion – win/win: reliability, openness, acceptance and straightforwardness.  Making agreements with each other and keeping them. Respect and nature each other. Improved understanding and ensuring frequent, high quality communication between team members.  When mistakes happen the will rally around, solve the mistake and use the mistake to increase trust and  learning.

PLANNING traps, fear of the future, what is the next step, that will not work, culture of urgency, are egos attached – ideas get crushed by negativity.  Could start in the futures with the vision then plan by working back asking ‘what happened just before that?’  What happens when the unexpected happens?

  • define major events, all key events and sort where they become like pegs for the rope to the vision
  • define minor events, like building the bridges
  • sequence the events, some can be done in parallel, work with events, no relationships yet and parallel as much as possible
  • draw in relationships, start on right with they event
  • allocate resources, as events are achieved points in time, the resources are allocated to the relationships, people, time, money
  • calculate resources, number of people, cost, totally time
  • establish deadlines

Do not surround yourself with wimps and nice yes role, people who ask more of you than you do straight with me, face the truth, people playing win/win and with courage. Not about position or status.  The really great people make you feel that you, too, can be great.  The resistance aliens will always show up to stand between you and your success.  Need personal persistence sometimes it needs raw staying power.  Need good systems and a supportive success culture.  Stay in touch physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually.

Where are you tomorrow, next week, next month, 6 months, year, 5, 10 years.

COMMUNICATION  “The result of any action that conveys meaning between people.”  The Macquarie Dictionary

Improve staff communications and create a strong sense of community by innovative means – being influenced by such factors as business change, technology change and cultural change.   Perform, Grow and Breakout by developing and using innovating solutions.

Enabling news and key messages to be communicated effectively with people having the essential materiel with all information being available.   Clear and concise in communication

  • to enable information sharing within groups and across all departments
  • to provide an information delivery structure
  • to enable easy creation and maintenance of content
  • to promote ownership and management of content
  • to improve quality and timeliness of group-wide communications
  • to eliminate the need for technical knowledge by users

Working for an organisation that is making a positive difference to peoples’ lives with Influencing and negotiation skills being more critical than positional authority for achieving outcomes.

David Viscott – Managing Difficult People


How rarely do we truly communicate with each other.  When there are differences, disagreements, misunderstandings, distrust, resentment and such like, meaningful contact and resolution is virtually nil.  Are we clouding the issues with personal attack, put-downs, criticisms, feelings of inadequacy, fear of looking silly, issues of right and wrong, and doing everything we can to make sure we do not appear to be the loser.  This could include walking out, going silent, ignoring, slamming doors, shouting, saying “You’re Stupid”‘ sulking, using derision, talking non-stop, playing hurt and ‘poor me’ or making the other person feel guilty.  We move into competition and not communication, the desire to win  and not genuinely allowing any form of input or participation.  Is it a case of getting my will done? How are we able to link together, hearing what it is like from each other’s perception and feeling that there has been understanding, recognition, appreciation, respect of individuality and the mutual desire to meet each other in goodwill?  Be patient with ourselves and not give up.

Hearing each other can be like a gestation period leading to the birth of a creative solution.  Hearing each other is much more important than agreement. Justifications usually mean we are not prepared to move.  How things really are can be so different to how we assume they are, think they are or imagine them to be.

Distinguishing between effect and intention can be particularly useful before proposing a solution to the problem caused by these mismatches. Learning about different turn-taking expectations fired the basis for acquiring a crucial skill in intercultural communications. Consider avoiding alienating others by defending,m justifying,m softening and apologising. Being cooperative in a team involves restraint, seeking harmony and considering issues of face for all participants.  It can be difficult to change our style and possible to over-evaluate our efforts.  The aim is for smooth working in diverse teams, allowing for any misunderstandings caused by different assumptions to be cleared up as they occur, listening and feedback can help link contributions while developing a deeper exploration of an issue and each speaker’s contribution is acknowledged with points less likely to be lost, overlooked or attributed wrongly.

  • do you need to speak
  • who will speak
  • how long will the person speak for
  • will opening be done in a special way
  • is overlapping speaking ok
  • how do you signal that you are about to finish speaking
  • how do you signal that you would like to come in and speak
  • how do you give a turn to the person you want to speak next
  • if someone attempts to take your turn away before you have finished what should you do
  • what is the best way of structuring the final turn which will close the conversation or event

Responsible Thinking Process (RTP), resolving conflict is an important life skill and negotiating is about ‘WIN – WIN’,  using five steps in negotiation a solution, working out a fair way to solve the problem.  Working to change the culture of ‘control’ and ‘make them do as they were told’ by threat of punishment and being able to avoid unpleasant ‘counter-controlling’ behaviour.  It is consistently using a sequence of questions being asked appropriately and in a non-judgemental, not in a shaming or confrontational manner, having people do the thinking and stops people doing the telling and resorting to ‘lecture’ or ‘control’ mode.  Mistakes can happen by all involved and acknowledging this and having people develop a verbal plan to negotiate and feel they are being listened to is important.  What we accomplish by threats must be maintained by force. What we accomplish by respect and fairness is self propelling, therefore real power consists in creating a situation where it need not be exercised.  Discussions about rules need to be simple, direct, positive and not personal which gives everyone a fair share and not violating the rights of others.  There is a need to be consistent, not play favourites, language is critical and it is not personal. Think about how unmet needs contribute to disruption with ‘you against me’ power struggles being avoided, injustice, questions are used to control, out on a limb and thinking about what could have been done differently.  It is ok to be angry sometimes, the important thing is the the do not hurt other people with our anger and it is important to fix up our mistakes.  People learn to deal with conflict from the way they see it handled, if dealt with by threatening, shouting, anger and punishment then that is what is going to happen rather than verbalising and talking through the issue creating a culture of empowering people to make choices, leading to self discipline and an atmosphere of calm.  Encouraging people to do the thinking and make good decisions.  Punishment and rewards do not teach people to think, they are only a method of control. … This process was developed by Edward E. Ford and is called the Responsible Thinking Process

  • Admit any mistakes or wrongdoing
  • Acknowledge the other person’s feelings
  • Explain your view of the problem
  • Listen to the other person’s point of view
  • Agree on a solution or plan

The ability to develop relationships with others involves building rapport which includes trust by feeling confident about the intentions and behaviour of others and accepting them without judgements, empathy by being able to experience the feelings of other people and showing you care about their experiences and feelings which is different from sympathy, acceptance without judging or controlling and appropriate honesty which helps others predict behaviour.

screen-shot-2017-02-05-at-11-57-04-pmCommunication Effectiveness Profile Dr Jon Warner

  • Empathising
  • Receiving
  • Clarifying
  • Understanding
  • Reading non-verbal clues
  • Feedback giving and receiving
  • Transmitting your message

Assertive Communication (#2 in a series)

We learn to communicate by trial and error, by observing and developing communication habits that may not give us the ability to relate to people well.  When we develop communication skills it allows us to build relationships and relate confidently with others in a mutually satisfying and helpful way.  Perception can be a barrier to effective communication when we interpret and evaluate the information differently sometimes resulting in conflicting views and misunderstandings.  Our perceptions are learned from our experiences and beliefs through influences, expectations, emotions, language, attitude, values, attention, perspective, physical condition, thoughtlessness, carelessness and/or habit.  We have selective perception that allows us to take in information that has meaning or value for us.

When cultural backgrounds are different, unmet expectations about what is appropriate can cause negative judgments.  Our behaviour can be determined by expectations with environmental, competency and emotional berries affecting understanding to successful communication.  This can include lack of information or knowledge, inadequate explanations of priorities, not listening, preconceived ideas, not understanding other’s’ needs, jumping to conclusions, lack of time, personal mood, frustrations, failing to ask questions and failing to explore alternatives often affecting goodwill, business, productivity, confidence, moral, absenteeism and loss team moral.

Low context communication style of individualist societies where the information is conveyed in words, in a direct fashion.  Information is organised in a direct and linear way, keep on track in an orderly sequence.

High context communication in societies with a more collectivist dimension include the context of the conversation, surrounding non-verbal cues and nuances of meaning that can be more important than the actual works spoken.  Progression grows out of a gradual accumulation of details, seeing a topic from a number of angles or seen in many different ways, providing all the background information first.

Another style can be where only information which is directly related to the subject is included, to provide colour, interest and subtlety with good listening involves making connections. The use of analogies, satires and metaphor to be persuasive and dramatic.

There are also rules and cues for taking turns to speak, how long to have a turn, when and how to close their turn and pass on the chance to speak.  Listening is importation with the need to show their attention and decide if, when and how to come in.  In some cultures overlaps and interruptions are common, speakers collaborate with each other, expanding and supporting previous points with two or more people speaking simultaneously.  While others have different rules such as allowing people to speak without interruption, taking account of the speakers position and pauses indicating respectful listening ensuring a turn is completed.  Signals can be misread such as passive, uncooperative or feeling invisible.

Communication techniques with others include:

Listening and Checking Back

  • maintain eye contact
  • value others’ conmments
  • do not interrupt
  • check back for clarification
  • restate to confirm
  • aware of others’ non-verbal cues
  • avoid jumping to conclusions
  • show interest non-verbally
  • do not interject my own issues
  • encourage further discussion


  • use clear, simple vocabulary
  • reinforce message non-verbally
  • speak distinctly and firmly
  • avoid information overload
  • time comments appropriately
  •  use I-messages
  •  check receptivity with door openers
  • repeat for clarification
  • check of understanding
  • maintain eye contact

A communication triangle of Manipulation by Martyrdom, Manipulation by Aggression and Problem-Solving.  Deferrers like to be liked, askers like to be the boss and problem-solvers look for ways of honestly meeting their own and others needs at the same time while accepting responsibility for their own feelings and actions, not blaming others or making unilateral decisions affecting others.  Faced with an interpersonal problem, they try to find out other people’s needs, state their own as specifically as they can and look for a mutually satisfactory outcome.

Relationships affect us when meeting our needs, performing in our personal and professional lives, collaborating with others and developing skills and knowledge. They are vital to our future progress, access to opportunities and the ability to develop satisfying connections.  Need to learn to deal with different types of people, they are a necessity and key to our identity, productivity, career success, meaning in and quality of life, physiological health, coping with stress, self-actualisation and humanity.  They are important for our self-esteem, our health and add meaning to our lives.  Building relationships the other person feels that they will benefit from knowing you.

Harmony may be maintained by the avoidance of communication that has the potential to cause unpleasantness and loss of face, a reluctance to give personal opinions or disagree with others with indirect or blurred conversation and conflict is ignored or dealt with in a round-about way.  Maintaining harmony by avoiding being the bearer of bad news.  Other cultural styles where heated, expressing strong views, forceful opinions showing emotions where direct criticism and personal remarks are acceptable or where criticism can be acceptable when it is impersonal and fair.  Some people may resent requests of instructions the two not at least pay lip service to the other person’s right to refuse.

Body language may be as much as 75% of meaning, with gestures that can have cultural meaning such as facial expressions, head and arm movements showing involvement with anything exceeding the accepted norm being viewed as emotional or overdramatic.  Not looking directly at someone is a sign of respect in some cultures, suggesting anger or seen as a challenge while other cultures are taught to look directly or it can be interpreted as a sign of having something to hide.  Prolonged, unwavering eye contact could signify interest or interpreted as staring, aggressive or insensitive.  There is the physical communication such as the distance, orientation, posture and physical contact.  Facial expressions, gestures and eye contact are also forms of non-verbal communication and environmental such as furniture, paralanguage such as tone and quality of voice and silence which can be a positive or negative influence.

Sensory acuity describes the ability to pick up small changes in such things as tone of voice, tempo, inflection, posture, gesture or facial expression.  People who develop this attribute become sensitive to their impact on others and are less likely to distort information in order to preserve their initial judgment about the meaning of a message.  The need to be flexible when communicating, avoiding judgemental attitudes, seeing the other’s point of view and modifying your behaviour and communication to suite the person and situation.  Show interest in the other person by listening, use their name, use a friendly tone of voice, be aware of body language, facial expressions and other non-verbal gestures.

Provide an appropriate amount of information when developing professional and personal relationships, leaving the other person comfortable in building a relationship with you.  Be open about letting people know who you are as a person, being interested in their ideas and feelings, wanting to know who they are as individuals, accepting yourself, take the risk of trusting the other person to accept you, accept the other person, trustworthy in interactions, need to be relevant to the relationship and appropriate to the situation.

Language needs to be clear, direct, non-judgemental and appropriate.  Say what you mean and be aware of ambiguities, rambling and vague comments.  This could include explaining what you are saying, why you are saying it, asking the listeners opinion, re-stating in a different way, formal or informal, appropriate language and no offensive language that might be interpreted as biased.  Avoid sarcasm, labelling others, using absolutes to describe others and issuing orders or making demands on others.  Use feedback as a way of knowing if communication has been understood, how your behaviour affects others and is perceived by others and giving feedback that is focused, helpful and non-threatening which can be as simple as nodding your head.  Focus on behaviour and not personality, actions that can be changed, use descriptions rather than judgements, refer to a specific situation rather than general behaviour, focus on here and now, share perceptions and feelings rather than giving advice, if people are not interested in feedback then do not give it, it is to serve the needs of the receiver, do not overload and do not give feedback lightly, be responsible for what you say and to clarify as much as the receiver wants.

Meeting styles, conversation patterns, can be animated and involving with interruptions and talking over each other which could mean everyone is highly-involved and may be acceptable.  Some people can find this high-energy, high-involvement approach difficult to join.  In contrast where a single speaker takes a discrete and uninterrupted turn, while others cooperate by listening attentively, with some people finding this excluding. Both wish to cooperate with one having speakers share the floor, completing and assisting with each other’s turns with a dynamic rhythm of overlaps and simultaneous speech, speaking together in a collaborative or cooperative way.  What are the problems when the two styles collide?  Attitudes towards turn-taking, packing, pausing and simultaneous speech are relative not absolute and may help in unravelling misunderstandings and misjudgments.  Style differences, rather than an intention to dominate, can sometimes be the cause of the problem. It is not necessarily so that people from other cultural backgrounds do things the same way.


The Pyramid of Communication McQuail

You may feel uncomfortable about asserting your rights, expressing your needs and identifying the things you need.  Aggressive (I want what I want and your needs do not count), passive (my meeds do not count and I do not want to upset others) or assertive (I want to find a way where we both can win) to enable you to express your thoughts, feelings and needs in direct, honest and appropriate ways which do not violate another person’s rights. Need to show respect for yourself and others and recognise mutual needs and obligations.  Accept each person as they are, can never change another person, people communicate differently based on their values, background and environment, accept responsibility for myself and not others, responsible for my side of the relationship, other people may choose to be assertive, non-assertive or aggressive, I have a choice and be sensitive to the feelings of others.  Low self esteem, fear of conflict and fear of responding prevents us from asserting ourselves.


To help make informed decisions, develop skills, knowledge and capabilities and satisfying relationships with others.  Using responsive comments can demonstrate that you are listening, showing empathy or support of their situation or feelings and may also present the other person from feeling as if they are in an inquisition.

Here are the five levels of listening: By Don Crawley, CSP  |

  1. Ignoring
    The lowest level of listening is called ignoring – not listening at all. If you are distracted by anything while talking to a user, they can get the impression that you are ignoring them. For example, while the user is speaking, you start a conversation or interject a comment with another IT support tech. You are ignoring your user.
  2. Pretend Listening
    Pretend listening is most easily explained in the face-to-face conversation. You’re talking to the other person and they have that “backpacking in Brazil” look in their eyes. On the phone it happens when you say things like “I see” and “OK,” etc. while working on an unrelated email or playing a computer game. People can tell you’re distracted.
  3. Selective Listening
    During selective listening we pay attention to the speaker as long as they are talking about things we like or agree with. If they move on to other things we slip down to pretend listening or ignore them altogether.
  4. Attentive Listening
    Attentive listening occurs when we carefully listen to the other person, but while they are speaking we are deciding whether we agree or disagree, determining whether they are right or wrong. Instead of paying close attention to the other person, we’re formulating our response to what he or she is saying. At all four of these levels it should be evident that we are listening to our own perspective, and in most cases with the intent to respond from our experience.
  5. The fifth level of listening is Empathic Listening Empathic listening, also known as empathetic listening is the top level of listening. To be successful in providing IT support to end users, you must teach yourself to treat every call as though this is the first time you’ve ever heard this problem, even though you may have heard it many times before. Discipline yourself to see it through the eyes of the user. This is called empathic listening. Empathic listening is the highest level of listening, and the hardest to accomplish.

  • identify your purpose in listening
  • focus on the person who is speaking
  • communicate your desire to listen
  • show your attention by eye contact, facial expression, posture and gestures
  • what until the speaker has finished before evaluating the message and responding
  • check you understanding and interpretation by paraphrasing sometimes including both feelings and content maybe when there is conflicting information, a major point needs to be reinforcing, underlying emotions that needs to be dealt with
  • try to see things from the other person’s point of view, practise empathy

Consider using

  • it seems as if
  • it sounds as if
  • are you saying/feelign that
  • in other words
  • so you think that
  • am I right in saying
  • let me check that I have understood what you have said
  • you feel annoyed that, feeling excited, happy

Questions can be used to obtain more information, have you understood or to summarise and need to involve the other person, find out what is important to them and establish a relationship between what they want and what you want to achieve.

  • Open questions are used to encourage the other person to expand and usually begin with what, why or how.
  • Close questions can be answered with a yes or no answer and can be used to check facts or obtain straight forward details.
  • Reflective questions can clarify understanding and explore more
  • Expanding questions encouraging the other person to give more details
  • Leading questions when requiring a desired answer
  • Hypothetical to gauge how someone might act or what they think about something or a situation
  • Probing questions to clarify something, dig deeper and find out more details.
  • Clarifying questions can be used to check for understanding
  • Paraphrasing to check an understanding of what has been said
  • Challenging questions to test comments or a persons position on an issue
  • Commitment questions to confirm actions or intentions.
  • Sweeping questions to wrap up questioning or to check all the information that is needed has been obtained

You need to identify your purpose, concentrate on the other person, show interest, evaluate after they have stopped speaking, interpret by paraphrasing or reflection and see it from the other person’s point of view.


EQ is the ability to build people up, bring them together and motivate them to do their best.  Generally it is how well you read other people, how intuitive you are, how you adapt to social challenges and how well you control or regulate emotions in a healthy way.  EQ may be a better way to consider how well you deal with people, conflict and emotions and adapt to challenges.


  • How many duties do I perform
  • How many hours
  • Guilt about time spent
  • Someone else takes my credit
  • incommunicative authoritarian supervision
  • Boss treats you unfairly
  • Unrewarding
  • Feel unappreciated or unfulfilled

Taking Responsibility

  • what I want
  • define goals
  • priorities
  • forethought
  • planning
  • my own decisions
  • adequate compensation
  • privacy

Life priorities  – work, position, money, success, family, happens, relationships taking on more than can sensibly handle, consider: behaviour, attitude, circumstances, procedure, planning, emotional, physical, decision making, time, control, self, social, change, lifestyle, workload.

Stress – change the stressful things, change the way I look at them, how I perceive them.

I contribute to my emolyers’s wealth, power position, career, advancement, the business is for profit, for the boss’s benefit.  Is my role extremely valuable?  Is it ‘them’ and ‘us’ which contribut5es to distrust and tension.

Employer categories,

  • creators – people greatest asset, how can we improve
  • cutters – people are my greatest overhead, cut role or what they earn
  • undecideds

Saying ‘NO’ does not present you as lazy anti-social, negative or uncooperative.  Present as someone who is efficient and in control, exilian why I am saying NO. Establish priorities, rationalising your refusal.  Think about tasks I have to do, time allocated for them and order of priority.

What information do I need, gather the information I need then act on it.  Act like you have control, control myself, my actions, my responses, my attitudes and my perceptions. Have total involvement.  The negatives can be fear, anxiety, ambition, guilt, ego, insecurity, lack of focus, competitiveness, envy, lust, anger.

Planning what I want to achieve and a blueprint for this, make a decision.  Look at detailed job description, specifications and measurement criteria.

CULTURAL DIVERSITY  and  EXPERIENCE of DIFFERENCE  multicultural and multinational workplaces

The way people interact in closely linked to cultural identity and related assumptions.  The effectiveness relates to the ability to achieve goals in an exchange and appropriateness refers to the ability to do wha tis regarded as proper and suitable in a give situation. Skills are defined as repeatable, goal-oriented actions or action sequences and not everyone is able to translate this into an effective performance.

English is not a culture-free language with not all words having an exact equivalent in other languages. There is the need to develop greater tolerance and skills. The successful intercultural communications is directly dependent on people’s willingness and ability to collaborate and negotiate mutually acceptable outcomes.

The need to become aware and sensitive to the cultural differences in the way we communicate and maintain effective professional relationships in the workplace. In particular, non-verbal behaviour differs across different cultures.  Things such as touching, kissing, holding hands, male and female interaction, personal space, gestures and eye contact may have vastly different meaning stop those of different backgrounds and can lead to misunderstandings.  Everyone has a responsibility to improve their understanding and awareness of the customs and taboos of those with whom they come into contact, particularly in the workplace  This will ensure mutual understanding and respect and help improve the communication between those of different background.

A richer and less stereotypical view of different cultural styles of communication between the work place and in their own environment creating cultural diversity in the workforce.  The need for cultural awareness and flexibility and an understanding of different communication styles as intercultural communication is concerned with the individual, the individual within society and with relations between societies. Four consecutive steps of awareness, knowledge, experience and skill with research within many different, but related disciplines: Social Psychology, Sociolinguistics and cross-cultural pragmatics, Sociology, Anthropology, Philosophy, Artificial Intelligence, Management Theory and Communication Studies.  Consider attitude or why, knowledge or what, skill or how with repetition for the formation of a new habit. Other considerations are the principles of adult learning, the range of personality types and learning styles typically found in any group, the special focus and requirements of person’s days-to-day tasks in the workplace and the state of intercultural sensitivity that each person right begin with.  We do not respond directly to events – we respond to the meanings we give to events, real life is complex and unpredictable.

Stereotyping, overlooking individual differences and oversimplification leading to prejudices and discrimination while assuming the groups we belong to are are better.  It is related to how we form, accumulate information to help us predict events and behave appropriately. Where as categorisation is seen as fundamental to perception, emphasising the similarities and differences relevant to a context.  It is adaptive, sensitive to context and open to social influence. Helping people to process information, what is needed to be known in order to construct meaning and achieve goals.

Western culture can be seen as lacking social discipline and moral standards, obsessed with individual rights while avoiding duties and responsibilities.

The appearance of humility may be valued downplaying self-praise or self-promotion.

  • Denial, where our own world view is flt to be the universal or central reality.
  • Defence, experienced as a threat to our own world, may judge all differences in a negative way and our own culture as superior forming barriers to intercultural communication.
  • Minimisation, attempting to preserve the central position of our world view, assuming absolute rules are similar to one’s own.
  • Acceptance, cultural differences are acknowledged and an acceptance of different cultural value systems where these systems may reflect a very different way of organising reality.
  • Adaption, are able to adapt thinking and behaviour to e experiences of difference, shifting their frame of reference to accommodate another culture’s world view.
  • Integration, have the flexibility to evaluate situations differently depending on their cultural context, differences are experienced as a basic and enjoyable part of life.

Without some understanding and appreciation of the needs and interests of different cultural groups in the workplace, at home or in international settings the communication process can be deceptive or difficult and misunderstandings occur.  Culture in the context of intercultural communications, in the broadest sense including behaviours, beliefs and values. Different cultural value system storm a fundamental, yet usually hidden, level of meaning when people from different backgrounds speak together. Generalisations can be flexible and open to modification while stereotypes are usually inflexible and need protecting by rejecting evidence that does to support them.

Individualism and Collectivism where these factors affect teamwork and the design of culturally appropriate management tools including appraisal systems.

  • Individualism where self-fulfilment and personal achievement are important with the emphasis on expression of personal feelings and options.  Assistance to other tends to be on a voluntary basis. People are more likely to be judged on merit where initiative and originality are rewarded.  There is not a strong group to support them and rely more on an independent system of laws appealing to impartially. The truth, the objectivity of truth, is analysed correctly then the right conclusion will be reached. Time is views as linear and segmented, schedules and punctuality are important. A task-centred culture.
  • Collectivism where harmony within the group is a central preoccupation, group goals and success is viewed as a group achievement.  Assistance to others is far more influenced by family and friends. Situations that cause the ‘loss of face’.  It is more common for people to be selected based on the status of their family, ethnic group or university they attended with an acceptance of cooperation.  There is a collectivist culture of support with consideration to who is involved and the strength of the relationship.  A person’s world, their reputation and the strength of the relationship can carry more weight than any legal document. Opposing propositions both may be true, seen from different perspectives and opposites can coexist.  Time is less tangible, a relaxed attitude to time.

Hierarchy is viewed differently such as in some cultures everyone is on a first name basis while other cultures behave according to their relative ranking such as age, sex and social status.  In more egalitarian cultures, if the usual lines of hierarchy in an organisation are bypassed, this tends to be seen as showing initiative, whereas in more status conscious organisations it would more likely be seen as insubordination, threatening the structure.  Relationship-centred cultures.

A common cause of friction can be differing views of what constitutes politeness resulting in confusion, bewilderment or negative evaluations.  A person may refuse to consider the proposal because they have no understanding of, or sympathy with the underlying values.  Negative judgements about the character, abilities and intelligence of others can be made, motives wrongly attributed and relationships damaged which do not always occur in isolation.

Cultures can be based on different views of the nature of self.  The concept of empowerment underlies many procedures and policies and is seen as evidence of maturity and a balanced personality, self identity, self-image and individual fulfilment, with other cultures not placing such a high value on these qualities.  There can be differences in assumptions, a difference in values and the need to look for the real cause of misunderstandings with an awareness of other cultural values.  Understanding someone’s world view and being able to clarify underlying meaning can provide the bridge that someone needs.  Choose is true empowerment, inclusive, non-authoritarian style and an intercultural awareness to assist in opening the gaps in a collaborative environment.  Find friendly ways to bring people into a productive team.

The different values of individualist and collectivist cultures influence attitudes and raises questions of what motivates people.  Where personal goals and aspirations have high value then there is the expectation that individual achievements and contributions are rewarded.  Where as in cultures where loyalties are highly valued, employees may prefer to operate as a group with people having personal attachments to a leader.  The way people are rewarded can be disruptive for harmony and cohesion of the group.  Consider consultation with local staff and putting into place schemes that fit with the values and attitudes prevailing in the particular society.

When people are constantly not heard they feel alienated and cancer become resentful. Summarising can encourage team members to notice possible inequalities, loss of contributions, keeping the team on track and allows re-assessment. Respect for and acknowledgement of difference and productivity with diverse teams producing more innovative solutions by understanding how to work with each other to best effect.

Some Cultural Approaches to Meetings with cultural values at attitudes to time, harmony, hierarchy, face and indirectness

  • junior person leads the discussion
  • senior person speaks at the conclusion and not actively involved during the meeting
  • decisions are not made on the spot in from of others by senior people
  • more relaxed starting and finishing times
  • no rigid agenda
  • clear action points seen as necessary only for essential items
  • more fluid, less ordered approach to discussion

Feedback can be accepted in some cultures with an expectation to be told directly so the weaknesses can be address and performance improved.  The emphasis is on the individual weaknesses and strengths and individual responsibility for failures and success with the aim of overcoming the negatives and improving performance.  In other cultures singling out an individual for direct criticism and blame can be seen as extremely rude and confrontational, compounding the problem and possibly causing loss of self-esteem and deep humiliation and not promoting relationships, face and obligations.  The basic differences in orientation in regard to conflict and criticism can obviously have very serious and detrimental consequences.  There are no principles of good communication the can be applied universally, there is the need to be culturally literate and aware while making adjustments.  In intercultural communication what constitutes good communication depends on the cultural backgrounds of the participants, it is situation specific, avoiding misunderstandings that have negative consequences for everyone.

Efficiently solving technical and other problems often in teams together with locals at the coal face, where people supposedly working together approach the same technical or practical problem in very different ways.  The assumption that cognitive styles are fundamentally the same across cultures is a false one, when problem solving models are not universal it can be frustrating and ineffective.  Problem solving can reflect the cultural attitude such as all that is necessary is perseverance and problem solving skills, however, there can be different problem solving models which have a long tradition in their cultures. Some of the differences being: working alone and reporting any problems to superiors who might come back with solutions, initial definition of the problem and a particular course of action is trialled, then implemented and adjusted until the desired outcome was reached or an emphasis on a logical progression with a study of the problem, reflect on it, pose alternative solutions, select the most suitable and devise a plan of action.  Difficulties arouse with the various cognitive styles including ‘brainstorming solutions’ with a preference for either a well-c0nsturcted proposal or remaining silent, an expectation that team members contribute irrespective of seniority while others preferring solutions imposed.

Some Skills to Remember

  • may bring different assumptions and expectations
  • bring out into the open any cultural differences that may be preventing complete understanding
  • break the message up into smaller segments, use pauses
  • check information by repeating back what you think you heard helping to expose misunderstanding
  • repetition is not always the answer, consider asking for clarification of what you did and did not understand
  • if it is not understood, rephrase
  • clarify the intention
  • clarify the other person’s meaning
  • practice good listening skills, they might have different ways of signalling when they are finished, other ways of structuring information and emphasising a point
  • summarise using different words
  • make important sentences clear
  • give instructions or information in the correct sequence
  • put key ideas into context, helping to explain the meaning of relevance
  • avoid complicated grammar

Some Useful Ways of Expression Situations

  • my reason for saying this is
  • maybe we are coming from this at two different angles, my reason for saying this is
  • did not catch that
  • what I really meant was
  • not sure I get the point or why it is relevant, do you mean
  • are you saying
  • can I come in here
  • will finish this point if that is ok
  • please go ahead
  • would you like to come in here
  • how can I put it
  • do you know what I mean

Reaction > Action – we feel something, we do something, a negative outcome (the reaction influences what we do)

Reaction > Reflection > Action – we feel something, we think about it, we do something, a better outcome (awareness and knowledge)

Reaction > Reflection > Selection > Action – we feel something, we think about it, we choose a suitable strategy, we do something, a successful outcome (awareness, knowledge and skills)

There are Different Types of Language

  • native speakers with all its slang, idiosyncratic humour and shared cultural understandings
  • impose on the language the values and attitudes from the culture of their native language
  • bare, transactional or functional

Some Attributes and Behaviours that Characterise Successful Intercultural Managers

  • prepare as fully as possible before assignments through wide reading, thorough training
  • develop sensory acuity, being cautious when employing thinking about using stereotyping or categorising to make sense of things, tending to describe a situation rather than immediately analyse and evaluate it without sufficient knowledge
  • remain flexible and patient in challenging situations
  •  empathetic, it is impossible to develop this ability through focussed learning and observation
  • tolerate ambiguity where appropriate but insist on clarification of meaning in some key situations such as those involving negotiations or ethical issues
  • postpone judgements about cultural practices until they can see how they fit into the total framework
  • develop relationships with people from various cultures, especially locals with similar interests who can help them learn about the new culture
  • learn the language so they can use ti, at least to some extent, socially and at work
  • cope with stress by looking after their health and taking steps to manage their stress
  • participate socially and professionally in the new culture but make temporary withdrawals from this high participation in order to precess al the new information


It is not only learning the language it is also learning and understanding the culture or the society, an ability to see things from the other side, understanding cultural priorities and values.  Show respect, interest, understanding and leave things open.

The need to learn other ways of thinking and behaving in order to operate effectively in a new culture.  Differences in cultural values such as spirituality, group relationships, material possessions with a loss of their cultural identity.  Negative social stereotyping often leading to low self-esteem and serious social problems.  Being in an unfamiliar environment which is organised according to a different set of underlying values and rules being overwhelmed with new information which cannot be categorised in the old way, no longer sure of interactions with people and feeling lost, disoriented, frustrated, angry and helpless with people reacting differently.  A number of factors include the degree of difference between the cultures, degree of exposure to the new culture, the fit between the individual’s personality and the new culture, level of support and previous exposure to other cultures.



Australian Directors’ Guild‘s condemnation of sexual harassment and bullying in the screen industry

Where can I get help?  If you’ve been sexually harassed at work, you can call 1800 RESPECT or Beyond Blue to talk to a counsellor. To make a complaint and find out more about your rights, visit the  Australian Human Rights Commission website.


Bullying is conduct that cannot be objectively justified by a reasonable code of conduct, and whose likely or actual cumulative effect is to threaten, undermine, constrain, humiliate or harm another person or their property, reputation, self-esteem, self-confidence or ability to perform.

Imbalance and misuse of power underpin every instance of bullying, harassment, discrimination and violence.

Bullying is an ongoing misuse of power in relationships through repeated verbal, physical and/or social behaviour that causes physical and/or psychological harm. It can involve an individual or a group misusing their power over one or more persons. Bullying can happen in person or online, and it can be obvious (overt) or hidden (covert).

Acts of Kindness Awards, Marion Parsonage and Rachel Taylor

Bullying is not always obvious, it can be bossing people around, intimidating, threatening or keeping them under pressure:

  • unreasonable demands or impossible targets
  • restrict and petty work rules
  • being required to perform tasks without adequate training
  • assigning meaningless tasks unrelated to the job
  • being forced to stay back to finish work or additional tasks
  • compulsory overtime, unfair rostering or allocation of work
  • constant, intrusive surveillance or monitoring
  • no say in how your job is done
  • interference with personal belongings or sabotage of work
  • shouting or abusive language
  • open or implied threat of the sack or demotion
  • people afraid to speak up about conditions, behaviours or health and safety
  • oppressive, unhappy work environment
  • personal insults, name calling, sarcasm and ridicule
  • constant negative criticism
  • freezing out, ignoring, isolating or excluding
  • intimidation
  • use of threats and insulting fear
  • constantly undervaluing effort
  • withholding information needed for your work
  • using formal disciplinary procedures to intimidate
  • distorting minor criticisms about a person as though they are major faults
  • use of 1 on 1 chats without notice
  • applying leave and other guidelines inconsistently
  • deliberately chaining work rosters to inconvenience particular employees

Bullying is justified by:

  • just a personality clash
  • abrasive manner – that is the way they are
  • just strong/robust management
  •  you have an attitude problem
  • inappropriate management style, but they get results
  • management prerogative
  • you resist change
  • they need to show who is boss
  • organisations facing a crisis need to be tough
  • you are just being negative
  • you are not displaying the agency/company values
  • if you do not like it you can go elsewhere

How to handle Cyberbullying – iiNet Feb 2017

The internet is a big part of our lives and everyone has a right to feel safe online! Social media can reveal a lot about our lives to the digital world. Most sites want to know all kinds of personally identifying information about you, and unfortunately some nasty people might use this information to bully others.

Everyone has the right to dignity and respect, and to a safe and healthy environment at work. You can get the issue out in the open by talking with fellow workers, hold a meeting, away from the workplace if necessary, get the workplace health and safety representative or other relevant person to take up the issue.  Identify the most important issues, keep records of incidents, so they are not forgotten or misrepresented, raise the issue with the employer and possibly through another representative, arrange counselling and/or assistance for distressed workers if needed.

CORPORATE PSYCHOPATHS  Is your boss manipulative?  Intimidating? Totally lacking in remorse? Yet superficially charming?

corporate_m1051253ABC Catalyst Story Archive Is your boss manipulative? Intimidating? Totally lacking in remorse? Yet superficially charming? Then you could be working with a workplace psychopath. The latest figures suggest one in ten managers are psychopaths, and this week Catalyst goes deep inside their minds – what makes them tick, how do you spot them; and how do you avoid being crushed by them. We’ll also run a handy test – tune in to find out if your boss is an office psychopath.

The absolute lack of remorse or guilt, lack of emotional response, lying, manipulative, callous, egotistical, self centred, glib and superficial charm.  The steal other people’s work spread rumours about people, character assassination.  Get an assessment from the people working below, if there are huge discrepancies in opinion there is a reason to look deeper.

Work Safe Victoria  Workplace bullying is repeated, unreasonable behaviour directed toward an employee, or group of employees, that creates a risk to health and safety, victimise, humiliate, undermine or threaten.

Incidents may not always be reported because people might:

  • fear retribution or payback from the bully
  • believe that no-one will act on the problem
  • fear being labelled weak or whinging
  • think that reporting will affect their career prospects
  • accept bullying as a normal part of work culture

Preventive measures:

  • consultation
  • strategies for raising awareness
  • monitor and eveluate
  • encourage reporting
  • control the risks
  • identify risk factors
  • inform, instruct and training
  • develop a policy of no bullying and make it easily available
  • procedures for reporting incidents
  • procedures for investigation incidents
  • create awareness on how to recognise bullying, possible effects and where to get further information
  • bullying resolution procedures
  • how the organisation deals with bullying
  • how to make a report
  • ensure the policy is adhered to and consistently applied

Indirect signs of bullying:

  • employees leaving the organisation reporting dissatisfaction with working relationships
  • high levels of absenteeism
  • increase in workplace grievances or complaints
  • negative results from employee surveys
  • high levels of staff turnover
  • issues raised at staff meetings
  • deterioration of relationships between colleagues, customers or management
  • regularly torn clothing/uniforms
  • regularly damaged personal effects or work tools
  •  an employee experiencing a number of minor workplace injuries
  • employees becoming withdrawn and isolated

Other factors:

  • organisational change
  • workforce characteristics
  • workplace relationships
  • work systems, including lack of appropriate policies and procedures, high rate and intensity of work, staff shortages, lack of experience and skill in dealing with employee groups, poorly-defined jobs and high levels of uncertainty about job requirements

Kids Helpline @ School program connects a counsellor with your classroom using video technology. It’s a free service for all primary schools, educational and fun!  Domestic violence affects thousands of Aussie kids every day. You can help us connect with more of our kids in need. Together we can be part of the solution, protecting kids and young people from domestic violence.

Reach Out Working out whether you’re in an abusive relationship isn’t always easy. Learning the signs of an abusive relationship can give some perspective. Thinking that abusive behaviour is your fault is a common feeling, but it’s important to know that you’re never to blame for another person’s behaviour.  Being bullied sucks. Bullying can happen to anyone and in almost any situation. It can make you feel alone, scared and even worthless. We know it might not feel like it, but there are practical things, both big and small, that you can do right now to help.

Real Justice, International Institute for Restorative Practices – Restoring Community   What Is Restorative Practices?  Restorative practices, which evolved from restorative justice, is a new field of study that has the potential to positively influence human behavior and strengthen civil society around the world. Restorative practices builds healthy communities, increases social capital, reduces the impact of crime, decreases antisocial behavior, repairs harm and restores relationships.


  • What’s your story?
  • Who are you?
  • Who is the most significant person in your life?
  • What do you value most?
  • Did you let people know how much you enjoyed time together?
  • Interactions with our peers an be sarcastic, negative , destructive or derogatory and can be a backward way of expressing affection for each other.  It is a fine line between ribbing from our mates and destructive digs to one not held with such high regard in a group which can easily leave the receiver feeling small, broken and outcast.
  • Talk about goals that have been set and how it is going.
  • Future aspirations
  • What have you learnt about yourself and what have you contributed.
  • What was your most significant experience?
  • What have you learnt?
  • What did they need to improve upon as a result of what they had learnt about themselves?
  • Issues of significance about who you are as a person?
  • What do you value most?
  • Marginalisation can be self-perpetuating

GENERAL  INTELLIGENCE:  Spatial Relations, Perceptual Ability, Memory, Verbal Fluency, Verbal Ability, Reasoning, Numerical Ability and General Intelligence.

What is the organisations’s culture, the specifics of the position, essential job criteria, realistic job criteria, skills and attributes necessary to see the job criteria, how much of the assessment is based on test results and psychologist’s professional judgement, how does the psychological assess meant add value, what information will the psychological assessment yield that is not available through interview or reference checking and how soon after the event will the report be available.

The Loneliness of Looking Out for Number One – You can love someone and give them the room and the right to be themselves or you can try to control them and make them do your will whether of their own good or for the enhancement of your own ego.  You cannot do both at the same time.  If you appreciate someone because they let you do whatever you want and makes you feel strong and smart, that is not love.  It does not recognise the uniqueness of the other person, only their usefulness. In order to love and be loved there needs to be room to choose, to become ourselves and all the power cannot be monopolised. An agreement entered into between two free parties.

Why bad things happen to good people translates itself into some very different questions, no longer asking why something happened, bu tasking how we will respond, what we intend to do now the it has happened. The ability to forgive and the ability to love are weapons to enable us to live fully, bravely and meaningfully in this less-than-perfect world.


HOW TO IDENTIFY and DEAL WITH A PSYCHOPATH  They’re more common than you think and are not all violent criminals.  David Gillespie, best selling author of the Sweet Poison books and corporate lawyer, has written Taming Toxic People. The telltale signs, according to Gillespie, are lack of empathy, feelings of superiority, micro­managing subordinates, glibness or superficial charm, an ability to lie well and lack of guilt or remorse.

Gillespie admits it’s hard because they are so slippery – great at massaging those above them, personally charming, but strangely “Teflon-coated”. He says “they’re very good at telling people what they want to hear and making sure the people above them think they’re terrific – but the ­people below them? They don’t really care what they think. They’re livestock, as far as they’re concerned.”

“Be polite, be professional and record everything,” ­Gillespie says. “As soon as whatever conversation has ­occurred, make notes in your own time and they will come in handy because one of the things psychopaths have difficulty with is maintaining a consistent story.” Documented abuse makes company lawyers nervous, he adds.

He further advises if you are working for a psychopath – and he identifies excessive micromanagement and centralising all decision-making as key indicators – then your only choice is scrupulous personal honesty, politeness and compliance, doing exactly what you are asked to do, without responding emotionally.


The Sea of Blah. The typical ‘teacher-talk-dominated’ classroom or the ‘the sea of blah’.  The sea of blah fills the room and the students bob up and down intros sea.  Every now and again they go under and take a gulp then bob up again for air and then go down again. The gulps are somewhat random with students spending their days gulping from the sea of blah.  Everyone takes home a different lesson, when you come back from your mental tangent, all that was said is gone as you cannot press rewind. Imagine you are reading your favourite novel, you go off on a mental tangent, when you come back half of the page has just vanished. This is what sea of blah learning is like for students.

Online learning is most successful when content information is provided by the best subject matter experts, expert information is translated to the new medium by educationalists and interface designers, learners are trained to use the online medium, trained online tutors facility the learning,  group discussions are incorporated into the learning to allow learner collaboration, multimedia is incorporated if it assists th learner to achieve the learning outcomes and if is accessible to the learner, the learner can participate in controlled practice situations online, email is used to settle the learners into the learning, to maintain contact and to give and accept assignments and feedback. Portal is like a window into the internet, give access to the course.

Autobiography in Five Short Chapters  By Portia Nelson


I walk down the street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk
I fall in.
I am lost … I am helpless.
It isn’t my fault.
It takes me forever to find a way out.


I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I pretend I don’t see it.
I fall in again.
I can’t believe I am in the same place
but, it isn’t my fault.
It still takes a long time to get out.


I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I see it is there.
I still fall in … it’s a habit.
my eyes are open
I know where I am.
It is my fault.
I get out immediately.


I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I walk around it.


I walk down another street.

Copyright (c) 1993, by Portia Nelson from the book There’s A Hole in My Sidewalk. Reproduced with kind permission from Beyond Words Publishing, Hillsboro, Oregon.

WAITING for the TRAIN  WRECK to happen before you get help

What’s Next, Where Do I Want To Go, Where To From Here

  • cannot stop, stay still
  • what not to stress about
  • strategies
  • keep it simple
  • how to keep it consistent and on track
  • sleep quality
  • what is exhausted

Are you the duck that is paddling quickly inside, what happens when the wheels fall off?

Creating it to be Value Driven and the steps towards alignment.

Am I happy with how I aim spending my energy, not time management – how am I managing it, do I own it, where am I putting it, am I giving it away.

Have a support network, a passion for work and what you are doing, build teamwork and negotiating.

Donation of personal time, time away can create a more energised environment.

Make time for yourself and do not apologise for it.

The ability to give and receive a complement, acknowledge complements. Appreciative for help.

Fear around being honest with the boss, authenticity.

Feeling overwhelmed, have a sigh, calms nerves and slows down the whole body.

Be aware of the impact on other team members.

Integrated work/life balance.

Set up a list of priorities and give yourself a buffer and create support networks.

What is the difference between urgent and important?  Important is what helps you advance to your goals and allows you to say no to things.  Use the calendar to manage time by making appointments with yourself, can be colour coded.  What I want to achieve for the week, make a to do list and scratch out half and work out the priorities are. Take ownership of my time and be consistent with defining goals.

Stopped working on being in balance, was exhausting, willingly be imbalanced and focus on what is required in the moment.  Be in the moment and be fully there. The freedom of not being everything to everyone all the time.  What is not worth stressing about, let go of it, let go of our ego.

Understand silence, starting with shorter amounts, letting the silence enable me to become aware of what my thought are telling me and let the silence happen.  Silence helps you to watch your thoughts.  This can happen anytime, anywhere and can be here right now.

Vulnerability – own it, need to be in control and if not why are you doing what you do as you need to be strong.  Choose timing and good leaders know the fine line between being in control and being vulnerability. Can rally the team, they want to help, how can I make a difference and help and at the same time the leader needs to be strong as people look up to leadership. People can connect, people are human, builds rapport.  Difference between being vulnerable and being an over sharer.

Corporate environment/culture, optimum stress levels and breaking point so they have higher performance.  The need to say NO, overwhelmed, underlying culture of punishing if not saying no and is not always safe to say no.  A no is a yes to something that is more important.  Unhealthy company environment or team culture when not able to say no, the need to feel safe to say no. When we say Yes, we can fill our days up to the brim and have no margin, we need a buffer. Why are we saying Yes, why are we saying No and set boundaries.  Do not want to be the first person to say no, start questioning why and use as a basis to start making choices.  They like Yes girls. How is this helping us achieve the goals of the business.  Help me understand how this fits in with the goals for the year. You tell me what to do and make the boss feel safe as well, understanding what is important.  Let me get back to you. The disease to Please.  Be protective and open. A disengaged workforce comes back to poor leadership, there is a need for visibility and direction.

Is it a value or belief that is being violated, be careful with the ‘should’, our needs are not being meet such as being recognises or right.  Where have I failed to be clear, on board. Do not necessarily need to shut it down.  Make a list of the SHOULDs which is a desire to control, next column WHO SAYS, I could if I chose to do so.

Expand to the confines of what we have and comes down to conscious choice, boundaries. What I accept and do not accept, speak the truth with concern for others and everyone feels safe.

It sounds really full on and good luck with that, they are attempting to enlist you. Do not be enlisted. Do not blame the other person without blaming yourself.  Do not know yourself well enough.

How do you want to look, sound and feel?  How do you want to show up at work?  What type of feedback do you want people saying behind your back?  If your body could speak what would it say?  Grumpy cow, positive, helpful and anchor yourself into that and through your choices you create that reality.  Take responsibility for your life, your choices, listen to your body.  Then the mindfulness comes in and we can slow it down. Through your choices you create your reality and is very confronting.


Capable of doing whatever it takes to have what you want and achieve your goals. How are you interacting with people, honesty, ethics, enthusiasm, commitment, instincts, integrity, ethics, honesty and spiritual. Surrounding myself with people who demand more of me than I do.

‘I will prepare and someday my chance will come’  Abraham Lincoln

Stop Needing to Win.  Stop Needing to Fight.  STOP. Hear how I feel without giving advice, listen, understand, tell my story and be accepted, self discovery, my problems are mine, someone needs to hear my worst secrets.  Do not get involved, look at the present.  No Mistakes, only lessons.

  • Rescuer – trying to help
  • Persecutor – trying to blame
  • Victim – blameless and helpless

Denial, the refusal to acknowledge reality on what is actually happening and the level of feeling.  In dysfunctional situations there is always a shared denial of reality.  when someone attempts to break through this denial there will usually be strong resistance to that perception.  Often ridicule will be used to bring that person back into line, or failing that, the person will be excluded from the circle of acceptance, affection and activity.  To be loved fro who we really are and to feel good about our own truth.  It is not about success or failure but it is about truth and being real.  It is about finding freedom to be ourselves, encouraging other to be themselves and developing communication, cooperation and friendship – it is about mutual respect and celebrating differences.  How can any of us ever be ahead of or behind others, when we are on our own journeys.  The ‘real me’ and the ‘real you’, the ones in our hearts.

HELP  IS  THE  SUNNY  SIDE  OF  CONTROL – efforts to help may actually be attempts to control, think about if it is coming from people with unhappy backgrounds or in stressful relationships.  When there is gentleness of self-acceptance, we are less judgemental and reactive to ourselves and others and how we feel is not dependent on what we achieve on that particular day.

The first and only rule of communication is to be aware of your motivation.  If you have to be right the chances of hearing others are nil.

A willingness to listen.  An awareness that the same experience can be viewed in very different ways.  An interest in negotiating.  A capacity to give up something of the sake of someone else.  A commitment to cooperate.  A willingness to make (occasional) mistakes.  An openness to learning from your mistakes.  Can be lots of little breaks building on each other and doing a good job every time an opportunity presents itself.

It is not what happens in life that determines your fate – it is how you deal with it.  The realities of survival, capacity to survive failure, pain and disappointment.  Failure is never fatal.  Do not condemn or tell what to do.  Learn rather than be filled with regret. We are bigger than our fears.  Forgive.

Within each of us there is peace, there is joy there is love and there is courage.  Whatever my path, whatever my experience, all roads ultimately lead to that one destination – knowing who me really is – not the little self-centred me but the deeply-generous ME.

The there R’s:  respect for self, respect for others and responsibility for all your actions. Open your arms to change and keep your values. Silence is sometimes the best answer. Be gentle with the earth.

Feeling empowered when choosing a goal and making it happen, including in the smallest way.  Discovery that angry and failure isn’t bad or something to be ashamed of and can be able to manage the complex world of feelings and your reaction to life.  Think about choices and consequences and from there lean to make wise decisions that can help them rather than feeling and reacting as victims.  A freedom that inspires and empowers with acknowledgement and active listening in the midst of stress, rush and communication habits of our lives.  Grow through our concerns and habits of worry, mistrust, nagging and anxiety to handle the things in our lives.

How would this planet and our lives change if we decided to practise letting go and releasing.  Letting go does not mean physically pushing things or people away.  It can mean letting go of an attitude – not having to be right – no longer needing to dominate – letting go of seeing oneself as a victim of everything and everybody – or simply being less addictive – personal expectations of others and ourselves.  when we let go of fixed ideas, in comes creativity – when we let go of non-forgiveness, in comes compassion – when we let go of prejudices, in comes curiosity and caring – when we let go of avoidance, in comes courage – when we let go of expectations, i comes openness – when we let go of control, in comes vulnerability and discovery.

BREATH – a constant reminder that we are part of the world, our planet, the universe.  Universal energy.  Open your hearts, then only can you enjoy yourself, respect each other.

If you want to run the world you must understand the anger and frustration of those who do not benefit from the way you are running it. Anon

If you do not give up in your heart you are never beaten.

Forgiveness means correcting our misperception that the other person harmed us.

‘You must be the change you wish to see in the world’ Gandhi


  • facts and feelings, left and right brain, include both
  • write in the present tense
  • visualise the goal achieved
  • must be yours, must want them
  • must be consistent with your values


  • What is Important to you?
  • What are you passionate about?
  • Who would you do it with, where and why?
  • reasonable exchange between giving and receiving
  • people under your care grow
  • loyalty is earned

‘The way is not in the sky, the way is in the heart’  Gautama Buddha

A belief is an idea or concept that we trustingly accept and easily understand.

A value is something that gives us strength, something that is very important to us, something we feel strongly about, something worth standing up for, something that gives our life meaning.  Values influence behaviour, they give us strength, imprecise, can be loaded with emotions and change according to circumstances.

Behaviour – thoughts and feelings, values and beliefs, needs and fears.

Values and behaviour are circumstance related and can change as circumstances change.

  • your spirit
  • family and close relationships
  • work
  • wider community
  • all living beings
  •  matter, energy, space and time
  • great spirit

We can either be victims or create our own reality.  Do not need to have all the answers to start with.  Take responsibility for our current circumstances and our life journey and we create our own reality from what we think about.  Collective unconscious.

Own my own life journey, people are responsible for their own spiritual values. Luck is where preparedness meets opportunity. Clear plan of action, working back with ‘what happened before that’ building bridges and joining ropes . Share the success vision of your future with the people around you.  Personal persistence with good systems and supportive culture.

‘Life is what happens to you while you are planning your life’  John Lennon

I am OK

I am good enough

You are good enough

I control those below me

I can be controlled by those above me

I trust when it is appropiate

I can let go when I need toI can depend, yet be independent

I own my feelings

I am responsible for myself

I am real and truthful

I am worthy

 I am loveable




Long Phone Calls

Dropping and Breaking Things

Not Starting the Job


Not Being Present

Not Having Contact with Others

Talking Loudly

Tons of Activity

No real Contact

Feeling Tired


to give

to love

to be kind

to be supportive

to listen

to be present

to laugh

to communicate

my feelings

to give ideas

 to be creative

 to be generous

to be courageous

to live



Business intelligence (BI) is an umbrella term that includes the applications, infrastructure and tools, and best practices that enable access to and analysis of information to improve and optimize decisions and performance.

The collecting, collating and displaying of data from different sources and taking the information and reporting it in a meaningful way, so that an organisation can make informed decisions about the variables in the business.  The ability to improve a businesses’ capability and performance.  If we are overwhelmed by information we are likely to miss the really important items.  The ability to collect, interpret and act on information quickly and effectively can be a competitive differentiator.  The more quickly and efficiently an enterprise can get information and use it, the sooner it can reduce costs or incase profits.


“the process of planning and executing the conception, pricing, promotion and distribution of ideas, products and services to create exchanges that will satisfy the needs of individuals and organisations.   Marketing a product or service involves anticipating changes in demand, promotion, ensuring that quality, availability and price meet the needs of the market and providing after sales support.”

The Oxford Business Dictionary.

The value that is offered to customers, alternative marketing approach, looking at the world with customer-coloured glasses.  Define the real reason for being there.  Let the customers drive the business, what do customers really want and the ability to deliver what is promised.  Customers are tires of being shouted at by hundreds of different marketing messages a day, engage people without being shouted at.  Staff and agencies need to be passionate about customers and work together to ensure that customers receive the experience of a lifetime.

Marketing and Finance:

  • Mutual respect and trust in each other’s abilities.  The need to have empathy with the other’s objectives to get a positive outcome.
  • Joint accountability to take full responsibility for the development and delivery of the business plan. ‘No surprises’ on anything that will have significant business impact.
  • Willingness to balance leaning to put on ‘a customer hat’, engaging in a healthy debate. Companies exits to serve their customers
  • Joint vision to drive the vision across the business.  Agree on the vision and then communicate this direction and the results of the journey as frequently as possible to all managers and staff.
  • Having fun and a strong sense of humour always helps make tough decisions a little less traumatic and everyone enjoys coming into the office and working together.

Marketers are always looking better and cheaper way to communicate with customers. The online advertising market share of the pie has relatively lower costs of production and distribution including email marketing compared to print, radio, outdoor, moving media and television production.  Permission emails, one-to-one marketing, opt-in marketing.

The use of a multi-channel approach moving from more traditional direct marketing techniques to electronic marketing to communicate with customers.  Email marketing has the advantages of referring the recipient to more information via web links, personalisation is easy, flexibility to change the message right up until the despatch time.

The anti-spam legislation makes it illegal to send unsolicited commercial electronic messages.  Electronic messages need to be sent with the recipient’s express consent, contain accurate information and have a functional ‘unsubscribe’ facility.

As it becomes harder to achieve marketing objectives through traditional media, marketers ware looking at more online opportunities more carefully.

Product development, cost of ownership, product strategy, marketing, situational and user analysis, implementation methodology, positioning, technical overview, customer relationship management, online implementation, vendor management, product evaluation and benchmarking, customer support, measures of success, education and training, governance and implementation support.


“The buying in of components, su-assemblies, finished products and services fromqoutside suppliers rather than by supplying them internally.   An organisation may decide to buy in rather than supply internally because it lacks the expertise, investment capital or physical space required to do so.   it may also be able to buy in more cheaply or develop more quickly than by ‘manufacturing’ [products and services] in-house.”

The Oxford Business Dictionary

If you have not got IT under control when it is in-house, do not expect to have it under control when it is handed over to someone else to sell back to you.

While information and technology continues to be a significant part of outsourcing contracts are becoming more flexible.  Outsourcing includes both core and non-core functions such as manufacturing, construction, transport and logistics, training, cleaning, waste management, security and information and communication technology, administration, financial services, human resources, payment, accountancy, claims administration, sourcing and procurement, payroll, legal,  audit and tax, procurement, facilities management, property management, distribution, sales, marketing, customer care and web-development.  They all share a common bond – they are information and communication technology reliant.

The growth of outsourcing is being driven by shortages of skilled workers, the need for organisations to respond more quickly to business and market change, the shortening lifespan of technology and the need to improve service quality.

There is still a gap between expectation and reality with contracts being written to focus on ensuring the outsourcer meets customer expectations, especially on service level.  There are ways to give both parties more flexibility and greater rewards including shared development costs and revenue generated with the view of expected change while being able to managing resources and the relationship.

Outsourcing is like delegating and you are still responsible for it.  There needs to be due diligence which includes a comprehensive view of the current costs and associated service level abilities, the customer’s current ability to manage the process in-house and its ability to manage a relationship or even a series of relationships with one or more outsources.  Contracts can become unstuck because people issues are significantly underestimated.  There is a need to review including the impact on innovation, the impact on teamwork, collaboration and service levels and the impact on cost.

Thoroughly investigate all options, bring in independent advisers, do not choose solely on cost, do things in stages, take small steps, communicate as much as possible before, during and after to all the people in the organisation.  The contract cannot cover all the circumstances, include scope for change and include deliverable and performance based measurements and milestones and tie these to financial incentives.

Reasons for outsourcing for Australians

  • improved service quality
  • access more advanced technology
  • maintain competitive advantage
  • achieve revenue enhancement
  • increased shareholders return
  • gain greater internal flexibility
  • make process improvements
  • achieve world’s best practice levels
  • cost reduction
  • enable greater focus on core business

Outsourcing can provide access to a large pool of expertise.  In times of change there are economic factors, new technologies, social factors and legislation that drive these decisions and there is a focus on tuning to companies that have competence and skills to provide the necessary input to ensure and secure much-needed change.  Difficulty in achieving sustainable improvements in performance in-house could be due to existing cultures that perpetuated inefficient work practices.

Outsourcing is a long-term partnership aimed at delivering ongoing benefits and like any long-term relationship, the customer and outsourcer must have equal input and sharing.  There is the need for excellent communication, strong systems for reporting, good cultural fit, key performance indicators aligned to strategies or business goals, trust and commits to a non-blame culture when things go wrong and celebrate success together.

Keep customers happy – is the business unreliable, overpriced, unresponsive to customers’ needs and disinterested in customers objectives.


Plan to ensure that all the risks had been considered and have an approach to manage any new risks that develop.   The moral obligation, it is critical to look after the interests of staff who are affected.  The staff who remain are aware that it ‘could’ve been me’.  If you have any expectations of retaining experienced staff as a committed team after the change, you have to demonstrate ethics, fairness and honesty so they will continue to accept you as a leader that they want to work for.  Genuinely concerned about the interests of the affected staff especially when many of the chiefs would become workers.  The memory of how the staff were treated remains long after the individuals are gone.

Inform staff for the reasons, the changes, the process and an indication of the time frame.  Ensure that affected staff would have full access to any support or information that they might require be aware that the focus might fall and make available the time that is needed.  Include consultants to provide training on resume writing and interview skills, workshops where responsible senior managers speak with staff more specifically about the proposed changed within their area of responsibility and the new roles that would be opening up giving staff some impact on the final restructure.


Not acquiring for the sake of it, rather acquiring the right companies that add value to both the existing customers and to the portfolio, at the right time and the right price.  Companies with good foundations thought not necessarily profitable, a fantastic niche solution that will boost the value of the customers.  A win-win for all, especially the customer, an ongoing commitment to customer satisfaction.  Focusing on both short- and long-term goals that are in reach and achievable and goals to strive for creating a winning culture. Having a clear vision of where the company has come from and where it is heading and communicating this clearly and regularly to customers, partners and staff. Remember to ask customers what they want, ok to make a mistake but do not make it twice.


Open Source Industry Australia OSIA – Amplifying the voice of Australian open source software industry.  Open source vs proprietary:  the jury’s still out.


Understand the importance of IT in delivering a business vision.

Adapt or die – building stronger links between IT capabilities, costs and business goals embracing new financial models enabling more flexibility, becoming more agile.  Productivity gains such as fewer operational support staff members, consider using SLA service level agreements, more fully utilised technology and faster response to new demands.  The technology will not be bound by its physical limits, not having to be built for its peak usage, using load sharing and a modular environment with shared technology.  With the aim of reducing costs to include faster-moving, more adaptive, more flexible IT functions. It is selective reductions plus appropriate investments that will result in net savings, a much more comprehensive understanding of costs and how to manage them.

Technology in itself is no longer enough to give companies a competitive edge.  There is the increasing pressure to do more with less.  IT is a key factor in an organisations success – but only if it is used wisely and seen as a key component of a business solution, rather than an end in itself.  Like any new technology – or even household gadget – you really do not know what you are missing until you have tasted the difference and then there is really no going back.  The nice-to-haves quickly become must-haves.

When fundamental services are still paper based, the e-business offers the potential to greatly improve the performance and reduce costs. Implementing technology with an ‘effectiveness and management’ focus rather than an outcome focus considering the need to empower people with better information where and when it is needed.  Outmoded practices have a significant impact on the cost, the quality of a business and business-to-business efficiencies including time savings, information sharing and access, improved data integrity, streamlining processes, improved accuracy and reduced wastage.  While the system is information and knowledge rich, users do not have to spend lengthy periods navigating their way to and from the inforamtion they want.

Over time a business can implement cost benchmarking, appropriate governance arrangements, a common operating environment, standard database and operating systems, reliable back-ups, low-cost storage, transparent pricing model and accurate asset register. Get IT under control to meet customers’ needs in terms of reliability, responsiveness and cost to them.  The hierarchy of needs being meet with predictability.

Adaptive organisations are enterprises that adapt to changing economic and business environments with new infrastructure such as web services, virtualisation and utility computing with budget restrictions.  An enterprise business architecture, an enterprise information architecture, service-oriented architecture,  publishing and intranet architecture and an enterprise solution architecture.

Achieve growth by adopting a collaborative, open and ethical internal culture.  How to run the business, how to meet business needs, how to deliver on project promises? The investment needs to have value, the project properly managed, an organisation with the capacity to deliver, all proposals presented have a common format, the relevant information is available and sufficient information is available to allow fair comparative evaluations across different proposals. Both the value and the inherent risks would be communicated.

This can challenge the companies culture, organisation structures, architectures, vendor arrangements and business continuity policies.  Be collaborative, share information, processes, research outcomes, network services, submitting tenders, collective buying of software and IT services.  Look at expectations for gigabit speed network, wireless connections, access to online facilities, security, consistent services and return on investment.

There is the need to understand how the business works, be a good communicator with an understanding of the business environment, the competitive environment, the type of customers and the relationship with suppliers. Really know what the customers want, how they are going to deliver that, measure it, report it and check regularly, have a strategy. Investing for the future, be collaborative and share inforamtion.

Use the money an organisation has as effectively as possible, understand the value of any project or investment and clearly communicate.  If employees do not understand the benefits, it diminishes any perceived value the project or investment might bring to the company, articulate the vision creating partnerships with the teams. Review staff roles, ensure salaries match industry standards, have industry job descriptions, set key performance objectives and match to project assignment briefs with a bonus scheme. Staff talent is developed and retained.

Working in isolation and lack of co-operation can bring isolation has negative impacts.  Understand information technology is of value to businesses. There is always an unknown that will crop up, there is the need to have a deep understanding of your own business, the customers you’re supporting and the environment you operate within.  Avoid the temptation to align with the lowest common denominator, take into account organisational capability, high-level customer expectations and the natural cycles of business.

Stronger participation from customers, meeting their expectations, establishing good relationships with point-of-sale concessions and have fresh views about improving the focus on IT to be able to stay competitive.

Outsourcing is becoming a long term business decision, acted at any time from any location by the client, providing competitive cost structures.  There is a focus on information technology infrastructure and operations being taken off shore with inclusions such as  call centres and online billing.

Include acceptance testing to be carried out to user satisfaction, progress reports allowing for project scope and budget to be controlled, change management required to ensure successful project installation and commercial risks minimised for a shared services environment.

Understanding organisational issues, have a vision, assess what content and inforamtion is required and figure out the best way to communicate this information to people. Improvements are always required and there’s always another challenge waiting just around the corner.  Change is the only constant in any decision maker’s job, be involved in driving business efficiencies moving from a pyramid to decentralised management model that can make this possible.

Manage strategy, manage debt, manage risk, increase diversity of views and manage the business.  A culture where debate is encouraged prior to a decision will build an organisation that understands its strengths and weaknesses well.

Start with with a business problem do not just get carried away with the technology, is it solvable, pilot something that can show tangible results, speak with the people who will be using the technology, what is the minimum amount of information they really need to see, give them the information they need, seek advice from experts and adopt best practices.


Users could not find the information they needed either because it was not picked up by search r navigation tools or because it was not even there.  Content owners struggled to maintain their content with site development being costly.  Need content management capability that is easy for people to both manage and to find information. Not  only needing to find inforamtion, need to consistently find it again, easy to understand and develop a sense of community and information sharing.

Consistent global navigation tools, navigation functionality, style across the site, effectiveness of the content, exchanging information, relevant information.

The most important thing for users is content and the ability to find what they wanted, useful information.  An expectation that what is wanted is linked from the home page with no need to look further, prefer to follow links than navigate through the structure with information that is easily located.

Maintaining a clear business focus, knowing about what users need, start with todays technology as there will always be something better tomorrow.  If a strong foundation is developed it can be built on later.


Content management (CM) is a set of processes and technologies that supports the collection, managing, and publishing of information in any form or medium. When stored and accessed via computers, this information may be more specifically referred to as digital content, or simply as content. Digital content may take the form of text (such as electronic documents), multimedia files (such as audio or video files), or any other file type that follows a content lifecycle requiring management. The process is complex enough to manage that several large and small commercial software vendors such as Interwoven and Microsoft offer content management software to control and automate significant aspects of the content lifecycle.

Content management will increasingly be combined with data management including email, digital documents, assets and records.  The benefits in terms of enhancing communications and collaboration as the intranet grows organically while matching the structure of the organisation. Managing content is getting more complex as the trend to overall information management talks hold.

Improving the speed of sharing documents and collaboratively working to deliver maximum value to clients with operational efficiency and reducing the duplication of information.

Problems have arisen with business being done over email, silently slipping outside the net of formalised, paper records-keeping activities. Regulatory and legal authorities already have the right to require companies to find and supply all records of a specific activity within nominated period. There is the need for all information within an enterprise, whether paper-based or electronic to be efficiently and collectively managed.

Some of the business benefits are increased productivity with improved access to and re-use of information for sharing and collaborating,  improved speed by making content easily available online decreasing business process cycle times, reduced risk when complying with regulators, improved IT efficiency reducing the investment in multiple content repository skill sets.

There is the ability to centralise sales, administration, finance, marketing and procurement systems while improving data entry and accuracy of databases for improved communication between staff and with customers.  Working together and pooling resources.


Organisations need to establish specific goals and objectives for IT governance.  This will require assessment of their level of dependence on IT,  financial position and their exposure to risk.

Standards Australia  New Standard for IT Governance   – Standards Australia has published a significant new standard to support governance leaders to successfully guide major information technology (IT) projects.

Australian Institute of Company Directors  – IT Governance Six principles for good IT governance Aug 08 Mark Toomey argues that British Airways could have prevented huge losses and embarrassment if it had applied the six principles for good governance of IT when opening Heathrow Terminal 5.

ISACA  Information Systems Audit and Control Association – As an independent, nonprofit, global association, ISACA engages in the development, adoption and use of globally accepted, industry-leading knowledge and practices for information systems. Previously known as the Information Systems Audit and Control Association, ISACA now goes by its acronym only, to reflect the broad range of IT governance professionals it serves.

COBIT 5 – The power of COBIT 5 is in its breadth of tools, resources and guidance. The value of COBIT 5 is in how it applies to your profession. COBIT 5 is now online, search specific uses by topic area and bring the power and value of COBIT 5 to your organization.

Consumers’ Federation of Australia – IT Governance Standard to benefit consumers and organisations.  IT governance is not a readily accessible issue for consumers yet the decisions made by most organisations about information technology (IT) can have great later significance, as is evident in a number of Australian IT project failures. IT supports organisations’ core functions and so IT investment choices and the contribution of IT to business capability and performance often play a significant role for future success.


ACSC  Australian Cyber Security Centre – The Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC) brings cyber security capabilities from across the Australian Government together into a single location. It is the hub for private and public sector collaboration and information-sharing to combat cyber security threats.

Cyber Security Growth Centre—AustCyber – The Australian Cyber Security Growth Network (AustCyber) is the industry-led and not-for-profit company responsible for delivering the activities of the Cyber Security Growth Centre. The Growth Centre was first announced as part of the Australian Government’s National Innovation and Science Agenda on 7 December 2015, and is a key measure of Australia’s Cyber Security Strategy.

Checklist –  do you understand the cyber risks your business is facing?


Stress, broadly defined is any demand made upon a person by their environment with the result being either positive or negative.  This is not due to workers but in the change in the nature of jobs. Increasingly, workers are required to work in isolation, with a machine, in surroundings that suit the machines not the worker such as no windows, uncomfortably cool an sitting for long periods.  The work is repetitive and boring, shift work is also increasing and these factors contribute to work related stress.

Stress –  stressed related issues and how it is manifested, our body is affected and how our bodies show this stress, can have digestive problems, depressed, biological, exhaustion, mental health, anxious.  Our body is learning to cope with stress and can start to shut down.  Managing the result of stress instead of the source, it is not the stress, it is how our body responds, reacts and prepared to fights the stress. How we fight the stress on the physical, mental, psychological and spiritual level.  Stress cannot be avoided. How do I respond and react to stress, slow down and choose how I want to respond. What stresses me, what is the trigger and people do not know themselves well enough.  It is our own fault when we do not know our triggers, our responses and reactions and then blame someone else.

Negative stress may cause anxiety, anger, loss of appetite, constipation, diarrhoea, stomach pains, feeling nervous, tension, depression, I cannot cope, exhaustion, headaches, insomnia, poor concentration with possible costs being absenteeism, high staff turnover, fall in production, increased accident rate, personal health and communication breakdowns.  Fatigue is a major symptom of stress. Every individual has different ways of handling stress.  Often we do not realise that work is causing the stress and therefore the problems are thought to be personal problems or failures.
Five Steps to Energise You
  • eat right
  • get a good night’s sleep
  • get active
  •  connect with friends and family
  •  relax
The nature of work has changed and the pace of change and the method of implementation are two factors that determine workers’ ability to adapt to change. Other possible causes of workplace stress includes, loss of job security, increased workload, conflict, perceived lack of recognition and support, low job satisfaction, poor physical work environment and insufficient influence by worker over the organisation, rate and pace of their own work.
Poor interpersonal skills on the part of a manager contribute to workplace stress, strategies could include clearly defining worker’s roles, improving communication on careers and workloads, distributing information on forthcoming changes, performance counselling planned in consultation with workers.  Managers need to consider the workers, ask what they need, listen and act.
Some ways of reducing stress by changing the workplace:
  • forming health and safety committees on the job
  • increased workers say in decisions at work
  • workers to have a say in the rate of work
  • fitting the job to the person and ensuring that the demands of the job can be met by the person and that workers’ skills are not under-utilised
  • ensuring adequate rests and breaks
  • reducing demands for shift work and reducing the hours worked by an individual shift worker
  • monitoring of the workplace for stress producing conditions with workers having a say in this surveillance
  • minimise voluntary overtime and oppose obligatory overtime
  • discuss the problems of work with other workers on the job
  • before agreeing to the introduction of any new equipment or processes, demand full information on them from our employer and that it is in everyone’s best interest


What is stress?

We see it, feel it and it is hard to define. Society pushes us to attain wealth, power and success along with a great personal and family life.  It can be the individual perception of losing control of their lives, a mismatch between expectations and reality. It not only arises from unpleasant and aggravating events, positive happenings like getting married and starting a new job can also create stress.

There are some conventional ways to overcome the edginess inside of us such as:

  • setting a realistic goal
  • new ways of doing things
  • structuring relationships
  • humour in life
  •  exercise and music
  • not taking our frustration out on the wrong person
  • cut out caffeine and nicotine
  • nutritious food
  • resolving anger

They are mental exercises attempting to become what we are not at a mental level.  We need to find balance and this is what Sahaja Yoga is all about, finding balance.  The power to change needs to come from within our own selves, to realise and understand oneself from within instead of tackling it from outside or foreign it mentally.

Carl Jung’s theory is that ‘everything that happens to a person is a direct result of that person’s thinking, speaking and actions’, ‘as we think so we are’.  With a need for peace, contentment and more freedom in our lives can we break free fro told, stressful, unfulfilling patterns of behaviour.  Happy thoughts and feelings of despair, loneliness and helplessness are the responsibility of each person, a choice. Examine old attitudes that no longer serve us, making way for new values, ideals and let go of self abuse.  Self nurturing is an awareness of how you feel and what you want from life and not expecting another to do it for you. Does stress make you feel important, good, concerned for humankind.  What is the pay-off.  Do we create distance from people. Are your possessions who you are. Talking too much and controlling people or not talking at all forcing others to do all the work.  Are you living the victim role, with frustrations and disappointment leading to chaotic thoughts and depression. Is there a need to create success bullying emotions and desires by living destructively.  Has the day held something worthwhile, something exciting, is tomorrow an exciting and interesting day. Is it impossible to keep up with all you heap on your own shoulders.  Is there the need to be perfect, the need for love and approval.  Lack of spontaneous.  A fear of verbal expression.

  • avoidance
  • self nurturing
  • projection
  • acquisition
  • talking
  • dependency
  • success craving
  • lack of direction
  • overload
  • perfectionism
  • speaking out


By awakening the energy called Kundalini we come from the all pervading power of the Divine love and Self Realisation is the awakening of the Kundalini through the central channel, piercing the seven chakras and emerging at the top of the head, the fontanel bone area, as a gentle breeze or fountain of coolness.

Each of the seven chakras has several spiritual qualities.  These qualities are intact within us, and even though they might not always be manifest, they can never be destroyed.  When the Kundalini is awakened, these qualities start manifesting spontaneously and express themselves in our life.  Thus, through regular meditation, we become automatically very dynamic, creative, confident and at the same time very humble, loving and compassionate.   It is a process, which starts to develop by itself when the Kundalini rises and starts to nourish our chakras.


How to Stay Calm: Wellness Experts Share Their Tips.  How often do you feel at peace during your morning commute, act with grace and poise during a stressful work meeting, or stay calm and serene while ushering the kids to school? Take a deep breath and visualise your life without the stress many of us accept as an inevitable part of life – now you’re already part way there!  To help stay calm and savour life, we’ve put together top tips from some leading wellness experts in Australia on how you could achieve peace of mind.

Try Meditation

SAHAJA YOGA Meditation is a meditation technique that aims to help users go beyond their thoughts to reach a state of calm. The Sahaja Yoga public program offers free meditation classes around Australia both in person and online, to help people experience the present moment and live a calmer, more fulfilling life.  Once you’ve learned the technique, simply find a quiet spot to practise it for 10 minutes each day. You may find yourself enjoying a peaceful state of thoughtless awareness, and maybe even notice improvements in mental, emotional and physical wellbeing in a calmer life.



Something that actually does not exist but appears to exist, is called Mahamaya (illusion) and the whole world is like that. Whenever a thought comes, say it is not there, another thought comes, say it is not there.  You have to fell this again and again.  Then you will understand the meaning of word ‘NIH’, which means not.  The illusion that you see is not just the illusion, but there is something beyond that.


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