Tear down those walls


Recently when I read of the twenty fifth anniversary of the tearing down of the Berlin Wall I was reminded of one of the great speeches in history.  In June of 1987 US President Ronald Regan stood at the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin and called on Russian President, Michael Gorbachev, to tear down the wall that had divided the city for 26 years …..  and just over 2 years later it was gone.

At the time I was midst some work for a couple of clients that had me dealing with the imaginary walls that still seem to divide PR, Marketing, Sales, Advertising, Social Media etc etc. in the mind of many.  For one we were doing PR and the other we were doing Social Media .

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In April of 2008 I read an enlightening book by David Meerman Scott which set out to define the Rules of Marketing and Social Media in the Internet Age.

As a result I wrote a blog about  These New Rules  and talked about the need to utilise the best tools available rather than think about Press Releases and Blogs. Continue reading Tear down those walls


Getting people who lived the story to tell the story………

2014-09-14 21.35.10Some years ago I decided I wanted to write the story of Neller Software for a number of reasons … and along the way developed an approach that I think applies to writing of any modern history book in a very cost effective and rewarding way.

But why is the first question when it comes to writing a book. Well…… Neller Software has played a very siginificant role in the birth and development of the Computer Software industry in Australia

And it had played a very signifiant role in my life and development in three different periods and in three very different ways.

1, I was sent to work there by my employer at the time Chrysler Australia to help complete a Payroll system we had bought

2 As an employee who went there as a techo and came out a few years later as a marketeer – an Analyst programmer who went on to become Product Manager

3. As Marketing Director and shareholder when the ownership changed and I was between jobs …. more about me and that later….. in the book. Continue reading Getting people who lived the story to tell the story………

From JNA to Eternity – 40 Years of constant change – The Birth

PunchCards were the original means of loading programs and data to the Computer …well before keyboards on dumb terminals or PCs

The story begins in the late 70s a time when change in the world was about to really accelerate.

The PC and the Fax Machine had not yet been invented … a geek called Bill Gates had just started Microsoft, Computers were called Mainframes they cost a million dollars and occupied large rooms with sophisticated air-conditioning and fire proofing.

Data was stored on large 64 kb disks and input using 80 Column punch cards.

And then IBM introduced their System/3 family of smaller computers which used 96 column punch cards

Then along came John Neller at a time when large companies outsourced Payroll calculation, reporting and management to Bureaus such as TNT and Mayne Nickless….  who were in that business because they also transported the cash in the form of pay envelopes. Continue reading From JNA to Eternity – 40 Years of constant change – The Birth

Stop Learning to Fish…Go Fishing now!!

gone fishingI believe in the fast moving Information and Technological Age in which we live the old adage :  Feed a man a fish and you feed him for a day, Teach a man to Fish and you feed him for Life has changed to –

Feed a man a Fish and you feed him for a day,

Teach a man to Fish and you feed him for Life.

But if he never goes Fishing he will starve eventually

When we wrote the Grumpy Old Managers’ Guide (note the positioning of the apostrophe) several years ago, we said the best way to adjust and adapt to technology (Social Media in particular) and discover its potential in business was to use it for something you enjoy.

Rather than treat the Computer as something you have to use at work to do Spreadsheets and answer email start to explore what it can do to improve your knowledge of things you enjoy – Wine, Gardening, Music etc etc.  We suggested that kind of exploring will open you up to Blogging, Twitter, Facebook etc and give you some appreciation of their use in your business. Continue reading Stop Learning to Fish…Go Fishing now!!

Is Sitting the New Smoking?

uplift-treadmill-desk-reviewSome time ago I wrote a blog post which encouraged mixing exercise with work to encourage both health and productivity

Walking Talking and Emailing Around

After that was published I was asked why would a business consultant be concerned with their clients’ health and fitness.

My answer is two-fold

I have a background in working with elite international athletes…so I know a bit about it …. but more importantly unlike the medical profession my clients are of no value to me when they are sick …and can’t pay their bills.

With this in mind a recent headline in the newspaper screamed out at me for attention “Sitting is the New Smoking”.  A lot of common sense and a bit of research had me convinced that whilst the headline was over the top there is a real issue here that we need to deal with.

For more background check out this article from Harvard Business Review, where Nilofer Merchant points out that …

As we work, we sit more than we do anything else. We’re averaging 9.3 hours a day, compared to 7.7 hours of sleeping. Sitting is so prevalent and so pervasive that we don’t even question how much we’re doing it. And, everyone else is doing it also, so it doesn’t even occur to us that it’s not okay. In that way, I’ve come to see that sitting is the smoking of our generation. Continue reading Is Sitting the New Smoking?

Entrepreneurialism – It’s like flying a plane while still building it…but…

Coming across this ad for EDS and having been in a Facebook debate today with my colleague Leila Henderson re Innovation vs Entrepreneurship/ialism prompted this post.

“Entrepreneurship/ialism is the building of any new business through a process of innovation” – Leila Henderson – CEO Newsmaker

Unwittingly I have been an Entrepreneur for most of my working life but only realised it recently. I have always looked at ways to improve and innovate no matter what my role in business has been as an employee, a director and more recently as a business owner and a consultant.  I guess I have rarely been satisfied with the status quo.

Over the past five years I have been involved in getting a number of ventures going in Australia, SE Asia and China. As such I have learnt much about capital raising and getting beyond proof of concept. I now want to share some thoughts and ideas and approaches that have worked for us…eventually! Continue reading Entrepreneurialism – It’s like flying a plane while still building it…but…