Megan Caulfield, Senior Strategist Ogilvy Impact
Keeping people glued attentively to their seats was not a hard ask for The Hon Helen Coonan at last week’s Executive Women Australia Masterclass session. But for the former Deputy Leader of the Government in the Senate, women need to avoid languishing in what she terms the “sticky chair”.
In discussing ‘How to know when you’re executive ready’, Helen stressed not to wait until you feel confident and equipped for a role.
“Be recognised for the right reasons,” she said. “Don’t hang back. Put your hand up for the tougher gigs and you’ll be the obvious choice for jobs down the track.”
In reflecting back on her career it’s clear Helen definitely didn’t wait for opportunities to come to her. She turned down a partnership in a top legal firm taking a “sideways” step by start her own legal business. When taking on the Wentworth pre-selection battle in 1995 she proved she didn’t step away from a challenge. Even though she did not win it was clear her skills and presence were noticed. The year after she was elected to the Federal Senate.
So what are the key attributes she sees as essential for women moving to the C-suite?
Leading from the front, inspiring people to come on the journey and being able to authentically communicate the direction were identified as key qualities that will help women move up the ranks.
But the key message she wanted women to remember was that different times call for different leadership skills and there’s a need to continually develop and adapt once reaching the top. “That’s what will give you the x-factor … the ability to adapt to complex demands.”
However, she stressed you can never entirely be in control. Juggling the work life balance act is an “extreme sport” and for Helen she is a big believer that you can have it all but not necessarily at the same time.
“You need to look for organisations that carve a space for family commitments both for men and women,” she said. “You need to embrace who you are and the lifecycle you are at. And it’s important to remember there are always opportunities further down the track.”
Now enjoying director and advisory roles for organisations including Crown, the Snowy Hydro and JP Morgan, Helen could never be accused of getting stuck. She has had three diverse career paths and passionately believes she has a responsibility to not kick the ladder out from behind.
“I’d like to be remembered as someone who created a pathway for others,” she said.
Sydney: January 16, 2014: Ogilvy PR Australia today announced Susan Redden Makatoa has been appointed to the role of Group Managing Director, Corporate. Ms Redden Makatoa is one of Australia’s leading communications practitioners whose specialities include communication strategy and implementation, media relations, issues and crisis communication, media training and facilitation.
Most recently a partner at SenateSHJ, Ms Redden Makatoa has extensive experience working at the highest level with major business and corporate communications clients. Having previously worked at a senior level with several Ogilvy PR brands, she has advised and run campaigns on behalf of some of the world’s largest brands. She has also held senior corporate affairs roles at the Australian Securities and Investments Commission and the NSW Chamber of Commerce.
In her new role, she will have oversight of a number of the companies and product offerings within the Ogilvy group, including leading public affairs company Parker & Partners, employee engagement and change communication consultancy, Ogilvy Impact, and sustainability communications practice Ogilvy Earth.
Kieran Moore, Ogilvy PR’s CEO, welcomed Ms Redden Makatoa’s appointment.
“Susan is an award-winning practitioner who will bring an enormous amount of knowledge, insight and energy to this role. We are really excited to have her on board to further boost our strong brands,” Ms Moore said.
“We see Susan’s role as drawing together our existing strong abilities in areas such as thought leadership, issues and crisis, corporate reputation and media training and housing them under one umbrella so we can offer them as a single, compelling option to the market.
“We wanted someone who would be able to draw on the obvious synergies that exist between the various Ogilvy brands and Susan’s lateral thinking and passion for clear, compelling communications made her the obvious choice.”
Ms Redden Makatoa said she was “stoked” to be returning to Ogilvy. “It’s an exciting time to be joining, as the team is already doing some amazing work. We’re operating in a rapidly changing environment, and great results will take fresh thinking and specialist skills” she explained.
“Luckily the Ogilvy team has that in spades, so I’ll be looking to tap into the team’s passion and smarts to kick even more goals for clients,” Makatoa concluded.
Ms Redden Makatoa will start at Ogilvy PR in February 2014.
Ogilvy PR Australia is a joint venture between WPP and STW, Australasia’s leading marketing content and communications group.
About Ogilvy PR Australia:
Ogilvy PR Australia is the country’s largest PR and public affairs agency with offices in Sydney, Canberra and Melbourne. It is 51% owned by WPP and 49% owned by STW. For more information,visit our Web site at www.ogilvypr.com.au or follow us on Twitter at @ogilvypraus.
For more information contact:
Sandra Renowden, STW PR Ph: + 61 403 823 218
Let’s talk about how companies can move their corporate brand further, using the untapped power of their own people.
As we know, brands are built on conversation – one customer experience at a time. They can also be destroyed that way. A company’s own employees can help power and protect brands, amplifying the investment made in marketing and advertising, for a fraction of the cost.
After all, most employees want their organisation to succeed and are willing to help. All we need to do is ask, and involve them.
All employees are potential ambassadors, not only those in customer-facing roles. When the customer value proposition and the employee value proposition meet together in authentic, positive and empowering synergy, the sky’s the limit. Employees will willingly share their experience of the brand they work for.
However those employees that come in direct contact with a customer have an additional point of leverage – they represent the time in a brand’s lifecycle when what the brand promises meets or exceeds what the customer expects.
Think about the brands we manage – can we say with confidence that we know how this interaction pans out?
To be clear, we are not talking about customer service – everyone provides that to a greater or lesser degree. What is important is how the brand promise is delivered, how it is experienced and perceived by the customer. Winning brands don’t just deliver superb customer service – that’s a given – they also deliver a superb brand experience.
After all, the customer builds an expectation based on what is promised via marketing and advertising. The moment of truth is when the customer experiences the promise.
For example, when Ford promises its brand will ‘go further’, the customer probably wants to see a salesperson who is innovative and forward thinking, who anticipates their needs and pre-empts their wants. They offer above-market after sales service. They go further.
Talking of cars, let’s ‘Think Holden’. While Mike Devereux tells the Productivity Commission no decision has been made on its future, employees of the car manufacturer can do nothing but think about what their futures hold.
Employees will only deliver if they feel connected to the journey. So, how do you create the intellectual and emotional connection, so your people walk and talk your brand?
- UNPACK YOUR BRAND BOX TOGETHER
Your people will tell you what tone of voice and behaviours fit the brand; not the other way around
- NO SURPRISES
If you have a new positioning or activation campaign, share it first internally so your people can complete the experience for a customer
- IN THE SOCIAL ERA, THE BEST BRANDS ARE SET FREE
Don’t be afraid, let your most connected staff share their branded content with their personal social networks; they’ll be your greatest advocates and have their radars switched on to spot troubles early, helping you manage crises or issues. All brands will have them. The best brands manage them.
So it’s time we recognised and acted on what the research is telling us: building brands begins with employees.
Lorie Helliwell – MD Ogilvy Impact
Challenge: UnitingCare NSW.ACT has been building a shared services model across their marketing and communication services over the last 18 months, as part of a strategic direction for sustainability and streamlining of the organisation. Communication and Marketing services for UnitingCare Children Young People and Families were next in line to be consolidated into this new model. UnitingCare wanted to ensure consistency of service through this transition, however did not have a clear picture of the activities currently taking place.
UnitingCare knew that an independent audit would be necessary to subjectively capture the complete picture of activities across the organisation. With a strong background in communication audits and effectiveness research, Ogilvy Impact successfully responded to the request for proposal.
Strategy: Ogilvy Impact were based onsite for the audit, to enable close working with the UnitingCare Communication and Marketing team. This also allowed us to see the organisation in action and pick up on nuances that would have been missed if working offsite. We also conducted focus groups with key stakeholders to develop deeper insights into perceptions of effectiveness of marketing and communications activities.
Although not part of the initial brief, Ogilvy Impact also undertook a survey of all the division’s employees, as it was also important to get the wider view.
Results: The combination of the completed audit, focus groups and survey gave UnitingCare a rich picture of the current marketing and communications work to be transitioned. While the initial brief was to audit, Ogilvy Impact was able to provide additional value. We identified opportunities for efficiencies through the transition, and developed recommendations of how to improve the new structure. We also provided insights into employees’ concerns about the move to a shared services model, and what they would like to see change.
As a result of this work, Ogilvy Impact has been asked to undertake a further audit and research project, to assess the rest of the organisation’s communication and marketing activities.
Challenge: An FMCG company intended to move manufacturing offshore, meaning the loss of jobs in Australia. The announcement occurred at a time when consumers, unions and media in Australia were particularly concerned about the decline of manufacturing. Careful engagement of all stakeholders was needed to maintain employee trust, minimise productivity loss, prevent industrial action, and maintain the company’s reputation and share of shopping basket.
Insight: Our strategy was to minimise negative reaction from all stakeholders through consistent messaging communicated via open, transparent dialogue, supported by well-equipped leaders who were always on-message.
Solution: Taking an ‘inside-out’ approach we ensured all communication was undertaken with care, thoroughness and sensitivity and focused first on those employees most affected. We facilitated workshops to align senior leadership around agreed key messages, and trained line managers to lead their teams through change with confidence. Our recommendation to communicate early, ensure affected employees were aware of their entitlements, and highlight benefits for the continued success of the business meant everyone felt well-informed, and trusted the organisation’s leaders as the credible source of truth on the decision.
Outcome: No adverse impact on absenteeism and productivity metrics during the transition. Employees, including those who remain in the organisation, remain positive ambassadors of the brand in their communities and in media.
Ogilvy PR Australia has announced that David Bell, Westpac’s former General Manager, Corporate Affairs and Sustainability, will join the consultancy in the newly created role of Group Managing Director, Corporate.
Mr Bell comes to Ogilvy PR following a distinguished career in communications, high-level management, corporate brand reputation and government. Prior to Westpac, Mr Bell was CEO for the Australian Bankers’ Association and has headed corporate affairs at both NRMA and Telstra, and served as Managing Director for prominent public affairs company Gavin Anderson & Kortlang (now Kreab Gavin Anderson).
In his new role Mr Bell will oversee a number of the companies and product offerings within the Ogilvy PR group, including leading public affairs company Parker & Partners, employee engagement and change communication consultancy Ogilvy Impact and sustainability communications practice OgilvyEarth.
Kieran Moore, Ogilvy PR’s CEO, welcomed Mr Bell’s appointment, which comes after a nine-month international search.
“David is a highly-credentialed practitioner who will bring an enormous amount of knowledge, insight, energy and connectivity to this role. We are delighted to have him on board to add further impetus to already strong brands,” Ms Moore said.
“The current managing directors of each of the companies will remain, but we see David’s role as drawing together our existing strong abilities in areas like thought leadership, issues and crisis, corporate reputation and housing them under one umbrella so we can offer them as a more compelling option to the market.
“We wanted someone who would be able to draw on the obvious synergies that exist between the various Ogilvy PR brands and David’s background and ability makes him the ideal candidate for such a senior role.”
Mr Bell said he was looking forward to the challenge of further enhancing Ogilvy PR’s standing as Australia’s leading agency.
“There is no agency respected more in Australia, and none with as impressive a client list,” he said. “I see this as an incredible opportunity and challenge to take a number of our brands, services and people and make them even more successful.”
Mr Bell will commence at Ogilvy PR on April 15. He will be based in Sydney but will work throughout Ogilvy’s Australian offices.
Ogilvy PR is a joint venture between WPP and STW Group, Australia’s leading marketing content and communications service group.
For further information, please contact:
Rebecca Tilly, STW PR on 0410 501 043
About Ogilvy Public Relations
Ogilvy Public Relations (Ogilvy PR) is a global, multi-disciplinary communications leader operating in more than 85 offices across six continents. In 2012, Ogilvy was named Cannes Lions Network of the Year and Most Effective Agency Network by the Effie Global Effectiveness Index, named Public Affairs Consultancy of the Year by the Holmes Report, won Consumer Consultancy of the Year in Asia Pacific (Holmes Report), and won the WPP global, top award (WPPed Cream, Crème de la Crème) for the fifth time in six years. Ogilvy PR integrates deeply with all Ogilvy & Mather disciplines (advertising, direct marketing, activation, promotional, digital and entertainment) through the proprietary Ogilvy Fusion™ approach to delivering comprehensive, business solutions through content creation, community building, and communications with measurable results. For more information, visit our Web site at www.ogilvypr.com.au or follow us on Twitter at @ogilvypraus.
The Michael Project is an inspiring new program designed by Mission Australia to provide support to homeless men, taking them out of the confines of isolation which are rife in the world of homelessness.
The final report for the project was launched on 17 April 2012, with attendees taken through the results of the research by Professor Paul Flatau, Chair in Social Investment and Impact and Director of the Centre for Social Impact at the University of Western Australia. They were also treated with special guest presenter Dr Dennis Culhane, Chair of Social Policy at the University of Pennsylvania.
The Michael Project was created with homeless men in the centre, using a range of services to ensure their quality of life was improved across as many areas as possible over the course of the 12 month program. The key was building on existing services to extend the range of support.
Mission Australia was able to demonstrate that the program could effectively save Australian taxpayers as much as $3,061 per participant.
The following three points were the focus of the project, and the reasons for its success.
- Providing temporary accommodation – leading to more long-term housing
- Providing specialist support service access – this helped to increase many of the men’s ability to earn an income and be more involved at a social level
- Providing one-to-one support from a case worker, assigned at the beginning of the project
Ogilvy Impact partnered with Mission Australia to produce a short video, bringing to life a developed infographic, for the launch of the project and to visually summarise the 69-page report. The video has been embedded into the Mission Australia page and has resulted in over 700 views, an excellent result in terms of awareness of the project and the work that Mission Australia does.
I got a Facebook message last night from an old friend (actually my first London boss) who I was delighted to hear from. Firstly, for the obvious reason – it’s nice when people get in touch – but more so because she’d read my blog (someone other than my mother emailing me about my blog is a rarity).
She’d been living and working in Spain for years until recently. She said with the recession there, her observation was that some large companies have just stopped bothering with employee engagement. A side effect of filling the work force with short terms contractors (less overhead risk) meant management perceived their need for communication to be less and subsequently their desire to invest in engagement went down. They stopped engaging people in the bigger picture.
As someone who is about to return to the UK (impeccable timing) to continue working in this field, I have to say I was slightly disheartened. Mainly because I think it reveals the knowledge still lacking in many organisations – that continuing to engage employees through the tough times, as well as the good can actually drive greater shareholder return. This is not the fluffy stuff. Getting it right can mean the difference between an organisation emerging stronger from the recession or a casualty of tough economic times. Engagement drives productivity and discretionary effort. Fact. Surely this in itself is enough for leaders to consider the advantages of continuing to communicate effectively through a down turn.
My advice to the C suite (and I say this to those in Europe as well as Australia) is yes absolutely, look at spend and be prudent, however don’t ‘cut-back’ on internal communication. It should be front and centre of your organisation during tough times. Your most powerful communication tool lies within your business – your frontline managers. Galvanise this army; equip them with the right skills, accountability and a powerful story, and you’re half way there. Enable them to have powerful conversations. Remember this should not be one way, the best employee communication is top-down, bottom-up AND horizontal, with a focus on informal influencers. Know who those go-to people are and leverage them.
As for my friend… after many years working in large and small organisations, she’s now busy avoiding mountain goats on a pair of skis in the French Alps.
As for me? Watch out UK. I come armed with a big and persuasive mission to fly the employee communication flag wherever I land (sans skis)…
By Tam Sandeman.
Ogilvy Impact, Australia’s globally award-winning employee engagement and change communication consultancy is delighted to announce the appointment of Lorie Helliwell and Mike Beckerleg as new joint managing directors.
Lorie and Mike replace Tam Sandeman who has decided to return to the UK after eight years with Ogilvy Public Relations Group of Companies – Pulse and Ogilvy Impact.
The appointments reflect a growing trend of companies recognising there is significant bottom line benefit when more focus and investment are placed on building brands from the inside out and driving strong brand ambassadorship with their people.
“With more than 15 years’ experience in the employee engagement industry, Lorie is renowned for the development and delivery of behaviour change employee programs which have driven countless business results. Together with Mike, whose significant insights from his rich experience as one of Australia’s smartest marketeers, the pair will take an already very successful and leading business to new heights,” said Kieran Moore, CEO Ogilvy Public Relations, Australia.
“Tam leaves Ogilvy Impact in tremendous shape and the new team is working in tandem with her to ensure a smooth transition period for our clients and our people.”
Lorie has been with Ogilvy Impact for over a year and was hired from the UK. She has vast experience in employee communication and prior to joining Ogilvy Impact in Australia, led in-house functions for large organisations such as BT, Telewest and Trinity Procurement, a SAB Miller company.
Mike brings 25 years’ experience on both the client and agency sides. He has overseen the brand, marketing and corporate communications divisions of such blue chip companies as Sony, Vodafone and Seiko and spent several years running Telstra, one of Australia’s largest advertising accounts.
They are both looking forward to making a strong impact…
A very big congratulations to the Ogilvy Impact team who won the Employee Communications Campaign of the Year with McDonald’s, All About Me. Pulse Communications received a Certificate of Excellence in the Consumer Launch Campaign of the Year category, for Launching Malaysia Kitchen Australia. And finally Parker & Partners’ State of Change received an honourable mention in the Corporate Publications category.
Serving as a judge on the awards panel this year, Steve Dahllof, Asia Pacific President & CEO, saw firsthand the high standard of work entered. “We are fortunate to partner with brave and bold clients. Our ‘What if?’ promise to them is to constantly challenge traditional, formulaic PR approaches and outline bold new courses of action that help keep their brands relevant and fresh to an increasingly savvy and vocal audience” said Dahllof. ‘What if?’ is a credo embraced agency-wide that gives everyone at Ogilvy PR permission to challenge the status quo and foster a culture that embraces constant change.
This is a great way to end the impressive list of 2011 award wins.