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10 May 2018 By Stephen Duns

“Command and Control is so last century!” Or that’s what we hear in so many leadership programs, although the reality is often somewhat different. I have asked hundreds, indeed probably thousands, of people “Who likes to be in control?”. Invariably the vast majority of people put up their hands and say they like to be in control. In control of their diary, their money, their team, their life. When I then ask the follow-up question “Who likes to be controlled?” we get the opposite result. There are usually a couple of people who are honest enough to say that they don’t mind relinquishing control every now and then to relieve themselves of the burden of responsibility. The answers to the questions reveal an underlying tension in any human system where most people want to be in control but all the others do not want to be controlled.

How would you respond? Do you like to be in control? Do you like to be controlled?

In those two simple questions are some interesting features of complex adaptive systems that teach us something about leadership.

Emeritus Professor George Rzevski[i] has refined the construct of a complex adaptive system to seven key features. One of those features of self-organisation. People will naturally self-organise and that self-organisation can be directed towards what leadership is proposing, or against it.

After the first two questions I usually ask “What do you do when someone tries to control you?”. The answers are always some variant of “resist, push back, fight or sometimes give in, acquiesce, become resigned to it”. So we have two fundamental responses – resist or apathy. Neither are what is wanted or required to productively promote change. (Or achieve “Emergence”, another key feature of complex adaptive systems that achieves a new and improved state of being or understanding, which is fundamentally a goal of leadership.)

So the more we try to control, the more people will self-organise against our control and the less control we have. A paradox for leadership. The more a solution is imposed onto a system the more that system will self-organise against that solution.

What is the way through this paradox? The answer lies in another feature of complex adaptive systems – “a system will only accept a solution it is part of creating”. The solution is to use some sort of participatory process that allows the collective intelligence of the system to create its own solution. There are many participatory processes that have been proved to be effective, such as World Café, Open Space Technology, Appreciative Inquiry, Circle Practice, Technology of Participation, Deep Democracy, Technology of Participation and Co Design.

This example illustrates the point. A power company had a major infrastructure program of installing many kilometres of new power lines. Their initial approach to the legislated consultation process was “decide and defend” – make the decision and defend it at community consultation sessions. The company was convinced to undertake genuine consultations. They went out and spoke with people who would be affected. They heard stories such as one man who said he went fishing with his grandfather and now takes his grandchildren fishing in one spot that would be devastated by power lines.

They then collated the data and came up with eight different options based on community concerns. All of the options were cheaper than the original option. So successful had the community consultations been that the new route did not require environmental assessments. When they went to formal planning stage there was not one objection. Farmers were willing to work with the power company to determine where the lines would go through their properties.

They saved millions of dollars, a great deal of time and developed positive relationships with the effected communities.

While it is tempting to try to control, and indeed it is even why we might have been given a role of authority, we need to resist that temptation and have the courage to allow and enable the system to come up with its own solution.

 

Stephen DunsSenior Facilitator, Leadership DevelopmentLeadership Victoria

10 May 2018


[i] Rzevsky, G. A Practical Methodology For Managing Complexity E:CO Issue Vol. 13 Nos. 1-2 2011

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2 March 2018 By Chris Kotur

It’s easy to feel pessimistic about how far we still have to go before all women feel respected, valued, safe and free to make choices but this International Women's Day I’m celebrating how far my generation of women have come after sidestepping those childhood stories and images that created expectations of what a fulfilling life for a woman – our mothers - ought to be.

The stories of my childhood showed women in passive roles with a pathway toward marriage, children and full-time family responsibilities or the risk of feeling guilty about ambitions to pursue study, a career or expectations for real equality in our relationships.

There are more pathways now for women to lead fulfilling, guilt-free lives. The changes have been in the right direction. International Women's Day reminds us of how far we’ve come but also how hard we have to work to ensure gains are secured for women everywhere.

Chris Kotur (WCLP’14)March 2018

Women in Leadership - 3-Day Intensive 

Designed for C-suite, executive leaders, our Women's Leadership Program (May 2018) will take you out of your comfort zone and into a journey of self-discovery and development, exploring leadership across complex boundaries. Over three days, inspirational female leaders will come together to share their leadership experiences, their personal and professional stories and empower you to reach your full leadership potential. All in the setting of the iconic Chateau Yering, Yarra Valley.

 

 

CHRIS KOTUR (WCLP'94)Chris is Leadership Victoria's Leader in Residence, a role that is raising the profile and importance of emerging leadership issues and development across all sectors in Australia.

She has been an active and committed Williamson Community Leadership Program alumnus since 1994.

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2 March 2018 By Saara Sabbagh, Founder & CEO, Benevolence Australia

As an Australian Muslim woman, my leadership journey has not been mine to navigate or own. Rather it has been shaped by global events, political views, racism and prejudice that has framed my path. Adding onto it were my struggles within the Muslim community where the ongoing gender discourse continued. Misguided religious patriarchal systems which perpetuate inequality and thus injustice only reinforced the misconceptions that existed in the broader community. And like every other woman, I faced these challenges in the backdrop of a patriarchal world.

I traversed this path for many years embracing the challenges as opportunities which only solidified my convictions. Having a sense of purpose and knowing oneself was my foundation. I did not give permission for the outside world to define me, or to take away my power and agency.

It is this inner strength born of an unshakable foundation and built on ancient wisdom and tradition, that has made me the woman and leader I am today.

Saara Sabbagh (WCLP'17)Founder and CEOBenevolence Australia Saara is an alumnus of the 2017 Williamson Community Leadership Program

Women in Leadership - 3-Day Intensive 

Designed for C-suite, executive leaders, our Women's Leadership Program (May 2018) will take you out of your comfort zone and into a journey of self-discovery and development, exploring leadership across complex boundaries. Over three days, inspirational female leaders will come together to share their leadership experiences, their personal and professional stories and empower you to reach your full leadership potential. All in the setting of the iconic Chateau Yering, Yarra Valley.

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20 February 2018 By Leadership Victoria


Meet Deb Cailes. Deb has a big job with oversight and accountability for the Capital Works stream at the City of Melbourne.

In this context, Professional Development often seems like something that you push to the side or wait until you have that ‘quiet period."

 

So for Deb it’s not surprising that at first, taking part in the Folio Program felt like an additional 'thing to do' on top of existing workload. Plus the experience was quite intense: unlike many corporate leadership programs LV's Folio program is actually asking you to open your eyes and look at your role and work in new ways.

For Deb - the experience was one of expanded awareness and understanding: “it was about leadership but on a much grander scale, not just leadership within the corporate context.” Developing a deep sense and understanding of complex social issues and meeting leaders working within these contexts was a major part of the experience.

"The deep dives and site visits make this all the more compelling – seeing real leadership in action."

Working then on a collaborative challenge with a group of people Deb barely knew was also really worthwhile – it gave me a sense of the diversity of leadership experience and learning from others was invaluable – this is where the wisdom lies.

“I walked away realising that the willingness to unlearn, to not be the expert – was often the most useful mindset to adopt when working in complexity.”

If you are wondering whether you are ready – well in Deb’s words, - it’s not about what you have achieved so far, or how far up the hierarchy you sit…it’s about your willingness, openness and capacity to learn.

“At the end it did feel a bit like we’d been through a washing machine. Shaken up and challenged, yet coming out of it with insights that made everything clearer and sharper.” And in the process she developed some incredible friendships and networks. 

To sum up: “City of Melbourne were incredibly supportive – the time investment was great – but the rewards were greater.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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6 February 2018 By Tracey Dore (WCLP'17)

Williamson Community Leadership Program 2017 graduate Tracey Dore knew exactly what her leadership pledge needed to be.

During Tracey’s Williamson year, she went on a volunteering holiday to Cambodia with her 13-year-old daughter, Georgie. Tracey and Georgie were deeply impacted by the scale of poverty and limited access to clean water and basic hygiene that they saw. Whilst volunteering, Tracey and Georgie helped build a wash house in a Cambodian school just out of Siem Reap. Little did they know that this experience would plant the seed for their own social enterprise back home.

On return Tracey assisted her daughter in establishing a social enterprise to fund future wash houses in Cambodia.  The business is called Arkoun, which means thank you in Khmer, the language of the Cambodian people. Profits from the sale of Georgie’s soaps will help fund the building of wash houses in Cambodian schools. Each wash house helps on average 400 school children access basic hygiene education and hand washing facilities.

Here are some concerning facts...

Over 9 million people in Cambodia don't have access to sanitation 380 children under five die each year due to poor sanitation Less than one-in-three Cambodian's have access to hand washing and toilet facilities Only 16% of Cambodians have a fixed hand washing place in their homes Hand washing with soap can prevent diarrheal deaths by 40% Despite a growing tourism industry, Cambodia remains one of the poorest nations in SE Asia with more than half the population lacking sanitation

With Tracey’s help and community leadership experience, her daughter has now set up an online store and social media platforms on Facebook and Instagram.

Georgie has since been nominated for the Berry Street Create Change Award, one of the ten categories in the Victorian Young Achiever Awards.

Reflecting on her Williamson experience, Tracey said “Sometimes you can get lost in the enormity of the social issues that you are confronted with on Williamson. I spent the first couple of programs wondering how I could contribute as I felt really underprepared. I realised quickly that if I was brave and used my lack of experience in challenging the status quo of global issues, maybe that was my greatest strength. Georgie and I nearly blew up our microwave trying to make soap but through this we’ve learnt so much about embracing mistakes, sticking to the cause and just giving it a crack.

“My Williamson colleagues have been incredible. When Georgie’s online store went live in November 2017, most of our first orders were from my Willy friends including Richard Dent OAM, CEO, Leadership Victoria. Thanks to them, Georgie has received media interviews and incredible business advice and support. I can’t thank my Williamson friends and Leadership Victoria enough for their support and professional generosity. It really does take a village!”

If you would like to support Tracey and Georgie’s cause, or have a business connection that may help spread the word, please contact them at hysend@bigpond.com or via Facebook

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19 January 2018 By Richard Dent OAM, CEO, Leadership Victoria

Catherine Walsh’s well-intentioned article in The Age (5/1) asked Australians to volunteer less. She gave sausage-sizzle examples and trots out the old saw that volunteering undercuts paid work.

Tell that to the volunteers who lead ICAN, the Australian organisation which has just won a Nobel Peace Prize for nuclear disarmament. Tell that to Dr Bronwyn King – the oncologist who voluntarily leads Tobacco Free Investments and has shaped a $6B industry shift. Tell that to the thousands of highly skilled professionals who lead countless boards of NFP organisations of all sizes and focuses.

Tell it to the thousands of mentors who share their wisdom and lived experience with younger Australians, recently arrived Australians, and under-resourced Australians. Tell it to the CFA. In fact, tell it to political party members!

Volunteers are central to Australian life.

But in one aspect though, Walsh is largely right: volunteering is undervalued. That’s because volunteering has a brand problem: in fact the very brand problem that Walsh’s own argument embodies. Volunteering is seen as narrow, local, and largely unskilled. That was probably false even in the 20th or previous centuries, but unfortunately it’s still a broadly held misperception. It’s a misperception that leads us to watch more Netflix and to forego voluntary civic engagement.

The truth is that contributions of volunteers are absolutely essential to our national identity and our national progress. And in future, volunteering will become even more important: as global wealth and productivity rises, Australians will have more opportunity to voluntarily lead progress in their fields of passion and expertise. This increase in activity will lead to strengthened social capital, increased innovation, increased health and wellbeing, and a better nation and world.

What we need is a national discussion on 21st century volunteering: we need Governments who recognise the highly leveraged investment which volunteers can comprise, we need a national strategy to unlock the amazing potential hidden in our communities, we need businesses and nonprofits who are thinking strategically about their connection to corporate and community purpose.

I accept the notion that perhaps sausage sizzles are economically inefficient: so volunteer less at them if you wish. But think carefully about your own contribution: be a leader and use your skills to do something good for someone. No matter how good your sausage-sizzle skills are, remember that Winston Churchill was an excellent bricklayer. If he’d spent the 1940’s bricklaying, history could be very different.

Government, business and community members need to support community contribution more strategically: civic engagement through volunteering is essential and will make Australia and the world a better place.

We shouldn’t should be doing less volunteering, we should be doing more and better.

 

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19 January 2018 By Richard Dent OAM, CEO, Leadership Victoria

Peter Dutton’s recent comments about a “gang problem” with “Africans” in Melbourne are very unhelpful to the demographic he’s targeting and to Victoria as a whole. Scapegoating a group is not unusual leadership (think Trump and the Mexicans), but it’s also not good leadership.

Perhaps he’s backpedalled somewhat in his subsequent comments, highlighting – completely appropriately – that a tiny minority of young men in a few locations do not represent an entire demographic. But nevertheless his statements are causing very public damage, allowing racists in the community to latch on to his comments to scapegoat an identifiable group, and causing fear and concern in that population and in Victoria more broadly.

But – perhaps perversely – his comments have helped good leadership emerge.

Leadership Victoria is proud of working with African-focused organisations such as the African Think Tank for almost a decade, and many members of the African Australian community have been actively building their leadership capability for years.

One of LV’s key messages is that “anyone can exercise leadership, anywhere, anytime”, and that’s exactly what’s been happening.

Over the course of the past week, time and again African Australians have been on the nightly news and in our papers and online (notably in the delightfully ironic #africangangs movement). We are seeing individuals like Haileluel Gebre-selassie, Kot Monoah, Zione Walker-Nthenda and many others with a direct or indirect LV connection exercising community leadership in the best possible sense.

The message of these leaders is clear: they are proud to be part of the diverse tapestry of the Australian community and they are proud to exercise leadership and to contribute to a modern, inclusive, increasingly safe Australia.

Criminal behaviours should not be excused, no matter who they are: people who break the law should be legally apprehended, tried, and if guilty punished and rehabilitated. We should support Victoria Police in both their excellent community liaison work and their crime-fighting work. And we should support every organisation whose purpose is to address issues that lead to criminality as well as those who support victims.

If we want swifter, better progress for Australia, then more Australians (regardless of background, ethnicity, ability, gender or religion) will need to engage in civic processes, exercise community leadership at all levels and work to create a diverse and inclusive Australia.

In Victoria all mainstream political parties support our very successful multiculturalism, and we should celebrate the diversity of everyone who helps create a better world through good leadership. At the upcoming Premier’s Gala Dinner in Cultural Diversity Week, the Premier and the Leader of the Opposition will walk together in excellent symbolism of our state’s shared commitment to diversity and inclusion: we should be proud of their leadership in this.

Negative comments by high-profile people who don’t really understand our Victorian multicultural successes are unhelpful, but with good community leadership excellent positive progress can emerge.

After all, anyone can exercise leadership, anywhere, anytime.

 

Richard Dent is CEO of Leadership Victoria, an independent nonpartisan nonprofit organisation which fosters leadership for swifter, better progress on complex social, economic and environmental issues.

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23 November 2017 By Dennis Banfield (FCLP'17)

"We could never, in a million years, have imagined Folio would test us and gift us so much.

At the opening retreat it was put to us ‘comfort really does end in failure’ and ‘success is hard work’.

On our very first evening together, our hearts began to beat faster, and blood pumped through many of us to boiling point, when we heard from an impassioned speaker whose message was as strong as his physical delivery – it was visceral stuff.

Here is where it probably began - the tipping point - when courage would, at some stage appear before us.

Leadership is a choice, and we were on the cusp of being presented with opportunies to choose, to let courage dive deep into our hearts and minds.

Coming away from the retreat we knew Folio would be a challenge.  So we leant in to seize the opportunity!

Engaging with a remarkable cross section of leaders we gained a greater awareness for the complexity of community issues in the areas of;

Aged care for the homeless Early childhood development Employment for people with different abilities Community housing Education for disadvantaged youth.

We were profoundly impacted by the many people we met and sat with in these groups and in the blink of an eye they became our teachers.

Our minds had started switching gear and reflection wanted to make way for action, but not to solution…not yet…wait, pause, gather, steel yourselves and go for the Big Ideas.

To become exceptional leaders, to make the world a better place, you need heart, empathy and passion as much as strategy and skill.

This is the feeling and the thinking. Through Folio we amplified both.

But, our secret ingredient, the difference between failure and success is that we are a very tight bunch, and, from this, we have seen, care, compassion and heart wrenching honesty emerge.

Mixed with our mindful listening and opposing views this has made our biases more conscious, our actions more purposeful.

Without this, our Big Ideas would be just – ideas.

We are the 2017 Folio Community Leadership team – committed to developing ourselves as exceptional leaders and making the world a better place through bringing our Big Ideas to life.

Thank You".

Dennis Banfield (FCLP'17)

 

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3 October 2017 By Will Brodie

Richmond’s remarkable 2017 AFL premiership offers a fascinating insight into modern leadership.

This time last year, the Tigers were enduring a shambolic board challenge after a disastrous 13th-placed season, which concluded with several massive losses. They went into 2017 having not won a final in 17 years, and 37 years removed from their previous title. Few predicted they would make the final eight, let alone contend for the premiership.

Richmond’s leaders, President Peggy O’Neal and CEO Brendon Gale, held firm as their positions were challenged. But they were not sitting on their hands. They conducted an extensive review, overhauled the football department, and appointed renowned football manager Neil Balme.

Their steady-as-she-goes approach was a godsend for a large, sometimes volatile club haunted by former instability.

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26 September 2017 By Will Brodie

You are what you read, and the smart leader always seeks inspiration from the best new books. We surveyed which tomes leadership experts recommend and these five publications consistently topped the best reading lists.

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14 September 2017 By Will Brodie

Resilience is a leadership cornerstone as the modern workplace become more volatile.

As author Rosabeth Moss Kanter puts it: “When surprises are the new normal, resilience is the new skill.”

Leadership academic Will Sparks defines resilience as “the ability to respond effectively to disruptive events”.

He's inspired by philosopher, psychoanalyst and Holocaust survivor Viktor Frankl, who said that “choosing our response – our attitude – to any situation is the only true freedom we possess.”.

Here are some ploys experts offer to help foster resilience.

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14 September 2017 By Will Brodie

Michael Dowling was recently honoured with an Order of Australia  for “…significant service to the community of Geelong through leadership with a range of social welfare, business and education organisations.”

Modest Michael makes it sound like he was simply in the right place at the right time. On his first day with chartered accountants Day Nielson, in 1976, the Art Gallery of Geelong rang, seeking a replacement secretary.

Michael didn’t know there was a gallery in Geelong. He’d been in town for less than a week. But he became secretary for eight years, then President. 

“People who have a board or organisation who are thinking of setting something up, they need someone with a legal background, someone with a financial background… So often you would get asked ‘can you do this?’.”

Michael answered ‘yes’ more often than not.

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5 September 2017 By Will Brodie

Elle Steele
Elle Steele

Little wonder Elle Steele is in demand as a speaker.

She aims to inspire.

Elle represented Australia at the 2000 Paralympics as a 16-year-old. When devastating injuries curtailed her swimming career, she became a national representative in wheelchair rugby. She’s overcome major surgeries and depression to achieve elite sporting success and run businesses.

But she’s about more than good stories.

Elle brings expertise in countering adversity.

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31 August 2017 By Will Brodie


“Leadership is the art of the possible and leaders with disability embody that.”

When Llewellyn Prain says this, it’s worth listening. The Williamson participant has excelled in the law, her own writing and editing business, and as a company director.

...and she lost her sight in 2014.

Llewellyn says she is “still in transition, still adjusting” to being vision impaired. 

“There’s such a huge amount of misunderstanding around disability in our community. I grew up with vision-impaired sisters and a vision-impaired mum but I didn’t really understand disability until I had one… so I think the more people we have with disabilities in leadership the better.”

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17 August 2017 By Will Brodie

Image credit: UniMelb. Amanda Sinclair
Image credit: UniMelb. Amanda Sinclair

As a leadership expert, Amanda Sinclair is a triple threat. A respected academic, she is also an author and a teacher. 

When writing for academic publication, she aims to be “interesting, relevant and engaging” to leaders.

To reach general readers, she has written many books, including her latest, Women Leading, with former Victorian Police Commissioner Christine Nixon.

When teaching, she aims to engage her students, not to lecture at them.  

So which of the three disciplines has the greatest impact?

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17 July 2017 By Will Brodie

Image credit: habibasgreenville.com
Image credit: habibasgreenville.com

Leaders can learn a lot from comedy.

Seriously.

Steve Cody, co-founder of digital communications agency Peppercomm, says stand-up comedy made him a better business executive.

“Comedy hones one's storytelling and listening skills and trains you to build rapport with a crowd… stand-up forced me to learn best practices for dealing with a negative or, even worse, totally impassive audience.”

Cody made stand-up and improvisational comedy “core components” of his company’s management training. He says it forged a “tighter, more collegial and fun culture”.

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11 July 2017 By Will Brodie

Australian Ice Hockey League Commissioner Robert Bannerman oversees a sport with a low-profile down-under. Yet, the AIHL is televised weekly on Fox Sports and flies teams across the nation all winter. Its crowds and internet reach have grown every year since 2010. Under Robert’s leadership, the league’s sponsorship, previously non-existent, has flourished. Despite contending with a dearth of suitable facilities, lack of broad public awareness and the tyranny of distance, the AIHL is one of the recent success stories of minor Australian sport.

All this without Robert, or any other official or player, earning a cent. The entire undertaking is unpaid; the AIHL is an amateur league.

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2 July 2017 By Will Brodie

Image credit: Wikipedia
Image credit: Wikipedia

If your organisation isn’t encouraging LGBTI inclusion, it is losing relevance.

As Harvard Business Review’s Sylvia Ann Hewlett and Kenji Yoshino point out, LGBT-inclusive companies “attract and retain top talent… they win the business of discerning consumers… and they harness the insight of LGBT employees to drive market innovation”.

They are also doing the right thing.

Here’s some suggestions for LGBTI inclusion from the experts, LGBTI people themselves.

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19 June 2017 By Will Brodie

Emma King
Emma King

You’d expect Emma King, CEO of the Victorian Council of Social Services, to be a champion of inclusionary policies.

She is, but she believes they are pointless without genuine leadership.

“You can have all the best policies in the world, but you must enact them or they’re not worth anything.

You have to walk the walk.”

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16 May 2017 By Will Brodie

Image credit: http://images.agoramedia.com/EHBlogImages
Image credit: http://images.agoramedia.com/EHBlogImages

“Diversity is being invited to the party. Inclusion is being asked to dance,” writes cultural innovator and activist Verna Myers.

Diversity is having a mix of people from varied backgrounds; inclusion is harnessing that mix.

Most leaders recognise diversity as a necessity for their organisations, but many struggle to achieve inclusion. Many diversity programs, often well-meaning, are too peripheral. They lack strategy, follow-up and depth. They aim to tick a box, or impress consumers and peers, rather than grapple with difference.

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11 May 2017 By Noel Murphy

Image credit: Cotton On Foundation
Image credit: Cotton On Foundation

Deepest darkest Africa’s human crucible is probably not the first place you’d expect a major fashion retailer to pour its proceeds.

But superstar Aussie rag-trader Cotton On is doing just that and rebuilding lives in one of the most dirt-poor, AIDs-ravaged places on Earth -- southern Uganda.

For the past decade, the Cotton On Foundation has tipped life-saving cash and personnel into the village of Mannya, and five others. The multi-faceted project is breathing hope and new life into them all, with clean water and healthcare, with schools and agricultural projects, finance, after-school education, university and vocation training.

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11 May 2017 By Noel Murphy

Image credit: Sovereign Hill
Image credit: Sovereign Hill

A pretty 12-year-old girl in a pale yellow 1850s dress and bonnet sidles up to a crusty banjo-playing street musician as a clutch of Chinese, Indians and Japanese come at them armed with cameras, phones, videos, selfie sticks and iPads.

The babel of tongues, clicking of shutters and mass of wide grins in this little exercise is everyday stuff at Ballarat’s Sovereign Hill, back-to-back winner of Australia’s Best Tourist Attraction award.

Francesca, at just 12, is a friendly chatterbox and a striking drawcard for young children, especially little girls entranced with her costume and her delicate Asian features. She scratches at the street musicians’ fiddles and mandolins, pokes at their piano accordions, just as any curious kid her age might have done back in the Roaring Days. During the week, she’s a normal grade six schoolkid.

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7 May 2017 By Will Brodie

Image credit: The Intern
Image credit: The Intern

If men are from Mars and women are from Venus, millennials are from a galaxy far, far away in the future and older workers are from, well, Earth. Twentieth century Earth.

Most workers under the age of 30 are comfy with social media platforms like Snapchat that are barely known to older compatriots. Most workers over the age of 50 have barely scrambled aboard Facebook.

There's never been a more urgent need to bridge the generation gap. Millennials already outnumber Generation X, they're about to become the most important retail demographic, and they will occupy 50% of the workforce by 2020.

So it’s little wonder organisations have embraced reverse mentoring, where a junior employee enters into a ‘professional friendship’ with an elder to exchange skills, knowledge and insights.

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30 April 2017 By Will Brodie

Image credit: Diversity Australia
Image credit: Diversity Australia

In the modern workplace, nurturing diversity improves adaptability, customer service, innovation and employee loyalty. It is profitable. Diversity is a pragmatic choice. 

But our decisions are subject to unconscious bias; prejudices we don’t know we have. Without being aware of it, we judge people by age, weight, skin colour, gender, educational level, disability, sexuality, accent, social status, and job title. We limit diversity.

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12 April 2017 By Will Brodie

Image source: latitude-resource.blogspot.com.au
Image source: latitude-resource.blogspot.com.au

Is it a way to find out the amount of madmen in a society?

A means of finding nerds dedicated to eradicating inches and yards from the world?

No.

But neither are they instruments of mental torture as many people may believe.

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10 April 2017 By Will Brodie

Image: simonwild.me
Image: simonwild.me

Change is the constant in today’s working world, and adapting to it means leaders need support for their ideas. They need ‘buy-in’. 

Here's how Simon Dowling, author of Work With Me: How To Get People To Buy Into Your Ideas sums it up.

“You achieve better results when people go along with your ideas because they want to, not because they have to… It's not about using power and authority, it's about building support and commitment to your ideas and initiatives.”

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5 April 2017 By Will Brodie

Theresa May. Image by newstatesman.com
Theresa May. Image by newstatesman.com

Is there a national leader in the developed world facing tougher challenges than British Prime Minister Theresa May?

She supported remaining in the European Union while Home Secretary, but now administers Great Britain’s complex retreat from Europe.

Scotland wants a second referendum on independence from Great Britain; the Great Repeal Bill involves re-tooling thousands of regulations; there are concerns about the rights of individual British and EU citizens; the financial cost of the exit will be at least 30 billion pounds; and, if all the above is negotiated within an exacting two-year timetable, the whole package may still be rejected by the divided UK parliament.

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27 March 2017 By Will Brodie

Image Credit: Tina Rowden/AMC
Image Credit: Tina Rowden/AMC

Have you ever met a female astronomer? A woman working as an industrial engineer? A girl coding?

Not many of us have, because the gender gap in STEM subjects (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) is immense, and growing.  

Halt and Catch Fire, an engaging US drama about two women running a gaming company in the 1980's, is bringing this subject to the fore.  The show is based on fact; there were more females working in computer science 35 years ago than there are today.

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21 March 2017 By Will Brodie

Image credit: heraldsun.com.au
Image credit: heraldsun.com.au

These days, there’s fewer fire and brimstone speeches, more talk of delegation and empathy.

Nobody typifies this evolution to nuanced man-management more than Collingwood coach Nathan Buckley.

A driven perfectionist as a player and captain, Buckley still insists that working harder brings better results, but his take on how to do that has undergone a revolution.

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15 February 2017 By LV


Constantine Osuchukwu doesn’t lack leadership. He’s the Anglican priest at St Paul’s Bakery Hill Ballarat after all.

But Constantine sought mentorship through the New and Emerging Communities Leadership Program because he says leaders “never stop learning”. Specifically, he wanted to improve his business skills. 

Leadership Victoria paired him with local businessman Mike McCaw, a connection crucial to the establishment of the inspiring One Humanity Shower Bus project.

 

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