Category Archives: Client

Community corporate collaboration critical: survey of ASX100 reveals


the c word has always believed: companies are at their best when they have a competitive-edge, creative-thinkers,  community collaborations and a focus on making a positive impact on society. That’s how we’ve always run our business, and that’s how our clients also operate.

Shared value, a term officially coined in the Harvard Business Review in 2011, has given business, government and non-profits a name to use.

Today our client The Shared Value Project released the results from the 2015 ‘State of Shared Value Survey’ with a panel discussion hosted by NAB along with media partner AFR Boss Magazine. You may have also seen details of the survey in your Friday morning copy of AFR’s Boss Magazine.

We’ve just left the panel discussion and we can report that while the global movement might be strong, Australian businesses are making shared value their own. It can be seen in companies across the nation from insurers to banks to FMCGs.

You may already recognise the concept within your own organisation. If so, you should join the community of Australian business leaders committed to advancing shared value in Australia.

The results of the survey, which are now available online or in the latest issue of AFR’s Boss Magazine, present an impressive picture of shared value in Australia. The survey targeted a combination of ASX100 companies and other organisations with demonstrable experience or interest in creating shared value.

And it’s not only Australians who are impressed by the results. International shared value trailblazer Mark Kramer has said he is “deeply impressed by the enthusiasm for shared value in Australia.”

The report also includes some great examples of shared value in Australia, and provides evidence of the challenges facing companies wishing to pursue a shared value strategy.

Whatever business you’re in, we encourage you to pick up a copy of the survey results and find out more about shared value.

Cheers, Jack & the c word crew



Collection of colour, creativity and caches


The best (or maybe the worst) thing about the internet, is the ability to get lost or distracted when you’re doing research.

We’ve been glued to our screens this week researching for a number of clients as they prepare to refine their websites. We have come across so many sites, some awe inspiring, and some just plain hard to navigate, and have decided to share five with beautiful design to draw you into  the content and stimulate the imagination. Some inspiration if you’re on a similar journey.

Screen Shot 2015-07-16 at 11.46.05 am

Cooking with manners

Martha’s website offers up recipes, cooking tips and home and lifestyle blogs. Martha’s flair for all things home and decoration is evident on this site. It is user friendly, incorporating mouth watering images and Martha’s infamous flair for decoration, design and perfection is evident.

Screen Shot 2015-07-16 at 11.47.25 am

A lovely French designer

This amazing site for Parisian designer Mahedine Yahia is a real masterpiece. It acts as a resume and portfolio for Yahia, who most likely will never be out of work again given the site’s flawless design work and concerted focus on great imagery.

Screen Shot 2015-07-16 at 11.49.52 am

Strong Russian coffee anyone?

Check out this beautiful page from coffee (yes finally a c word) roasters in St Petersburg. Fresh like roasted coffee, this site is definitely up to date and beautifully designed. They’ve combined beautiful colour graphics with parallax scrolling and different types of navigation. It really brings the website to life and keeps the reader intrigued.

Screen Shot 2015-07-16 at 11.52.02 am

A little bird

We still think that Twitter’s simple design and user friendly experience is one of the best social media sites out there. Perhaps that’s why it’s becoming more and more popular.

Screen Shot 2015-07-16 at 11.47.55 am

And finally, a crisp classic – simple, elegant, beautiful

It’s a question that will go unanswered: just how did Steve Jobs get something we use everyday to be so damn pretty? The Apple website and specifically the iTunes site are flawless. You could keep exploring the vivid colours and images for hours. (and just been us, we often head there for a little inspiration drooling). Macs are so beautiful that they’d probably be fixtures in movies and on TV even if product placement didn’t exist. They are artwork on their own. Their slim lines, the simple colours, the shape of that iconic apple on each piece. So of course the website is going to follow suit in its design.


Cheers, Jack & the c word crew

Crabs, cocktails and clock-free time: Sri Lankan writing fellowship now open


“The gift of time is the greatest gift that a writer can receive” – Susan Meyers

Having uninterrupted time to put pen to paper is a writer’s ultimate dream. The Templeberg Residential Writing Fellowship for 2015 offers just this: an opportunity for writers across Australia to apply for a writer in residency in an environment wholly dedicated to writing, with accommodation and full board provided, to develop an established writing or illustration project.

Located in the Southern Province of Sri Lanka for two to four weeks to purely work on a writing project, free from social obligations and financial pressures. This residency gives the artist or writer the time and brain space to refine their craft and clarify their expression through their writing or illustrations.

Applications are invited from emerging and established writers who have been engaged for a minimum of two years in the fields of journalism, creative writing (fiction and non-fiction, performing arts or poetry) or certain online platforms – like Bloggers.

The successful fellow will receive an economy return airfare from Melbourne to Colombo in Sri Lanka, a 30-day tourist visa, internal transfers, accommodation, full board (all meals) and AU$1,000 spending allowance.

This fellowship should be used to develop and prepare a new or existing work for publication. For emerging authors moving into the next stages of a writing career, this kind of progress is essential to help move forward and continue building a reputation in the writing world.

And the judges are…

Judges include Sri Lankan-based author Royston Ellis, Victorian writer Michelle Wright (2013 Templeberg Fellow), Canberra-based writer Lucy Nelson (2014 Templeberg Fellow), and the co-owners of Templeberg Villa Brent Carey and Christopher Shields.

Royston Ellis is the author of more than 60 published books (guides, novels, biographies and volumes of poetry). Originally from England, Royston was the British representative of the Beat Generation. Royston has been residing in Sri Lanka since 1980. His knowledge, and closeness with the Sri Lankan culture is obvious in his writing.

Michelle Wright lives in Victoria and writes short stories and flash fiction. Her stories have won The Age, Alan Marshall, Grace Marion Wilson, Orlando and Magic Oxygen Short Story Awards. Her collection of short stories, Fine, was shortlisted for the Victorian Premier’s Literary Award for an unpublished manuscript written while in Sri Lanka as the 2013 Templeberg Fellow.

Lucy Nelson is co-director of Canberra’s experimental writers festival. Her work is regularly published in the Canberra Times and street magazine The Big Issue. She has published and performed personal essays and short fiction and is currently working on her first manuscript.

Applications should be submitted online by Monday 6 July 2015.

From crabs to cocktails, Sri Lanka offers it all. It is the perfect destination for relaxation, brainstorming and the creative process to brew.



Closing comment – communities & companies converge through #sharedvalue


We are delighted to be collaborating with the Shared Value Project on their upcoming Shared Value Forum in Melbourne on 14 April with international expert and thought leader Mark Kramer.

Mark has been instrumental in the development of shared value alongside his colleague Michael Porter. Yes my communications companions, that Michael Porter.

As well as hearing from Mark, you’ll be able to hear first hand how Australian companies are making shared value a part of their businesses. There are some incredible case studies on the cards, and plenty of time to network and speak directly to people making shared value happen!

Visit for a full program, speaker details and further information on #SVF15.

In the meantime, here’s a question for you to ponder:

Why are more Australian organisations making shared value a key part of their business?

Find out why at the 2015 Shared Value Forum: Act. Measure. Grow. on 14 April 2015 with shared value expert and thought leader Mark Kramer leading the discussion and providing an international context.

Join other business leaders and practitioners from across Australia as they present case studies and examine key challenges and opportunities including how further measurement can demonstrate the full potential of a shared value strategy. The forum also includes an interactive workshop presenting ‘how to’ develop, deliver, integrate, and communicate shared value strategies within your organisation, and understand the role of stakeholder and community partnerships. Mark Kramer will also lead a session that examines the complexities involved in measuring shared value outcomes, with a focus on the tools and solutions that link business and social results.

Cheers, Jack & the c word crew

Closing comment – Communicating and leading #likeagirl


Image via Sadhbh Byrne @sadhbhbyrne

Last week marked another historic moment for Victorian and Australian women doing leadership #likeagirl with two high level positions of power being succeeded by women.

Ms Linda Dessau is set to become the first female Governor of Victoria, and distinguished medical researcher Professor Anne Kelso AO has been appointed the new Chief Executive Officer of the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC).

Interestingly, Victoria is the last Australian jurisdiction to appoint a woman as a vice-regal representative. Well done to all the other states for beating us to it!

These significant appointments represent great achievement and change in government and science sectors, with leadership positions traditionally being held by men.

What are the benefits for increasing gender diversity in senior roles? According to research more women in leadership roles means better decisions, better performance, and better representation of the consumer base.

Comedian Amy Poehler would agree and issued a call for women across the world to reclaim the phrase “like a girl” and flip its derogatory meaning on its head.

Through her online community Smart Girls, Poehler has asked women to take to social media and list all the things they have achieved #likeagirl.

Poehler’s message is not only that women around the world are making astounding achievements; they are doing it without needing to adhere to male-focused notions of success and leadership. They are doing it #likeagirl.

The campaign set out to turn #likeagirl into a compliment, rather than a denigration, and through social media, namely Twitter, Poehler has taken this message and spread it to as many corners of the world as possible.

Poehler’s campaign – and the appointment of these two inspiring female high flyers – highlight a small fraction of the gender equality issue, the revolution of women taking charge and leadership in the workplace and the importance of using modern tools to educate and keep people informed.

On the topic of doing it #likeagirl, our client veski is delivering an inspiring women program with the aim of supporting career progression of Victorian women through the provision of resources, information and opportunities; partnerships with government, industry, community and academia; and professional development and networking opportunities. Make sure you save the date for their next event on 16 March 2015.

Cheers, Jack & the c word crew

Closing comment: #LeadershipIS communication


This month we have been working closely with our client Leadership Victoria on a Twitter campaign #LeadershipIS. With their mission to bring visionary leadership thinking and practice to the broader community, we asked what the word leadership means to people.

The #LeadershipIS tweets have truly shown that “leadership” means different things to different people but there are a number of common threads. Here are some of the responses.

Leaders themselves set examples for others to do the right things. They set direction, build an inspiring vision, and create something new. Yet, while leaders set the direction, they must also use management skills to guide their people to the right destination, in a smooth and efficient way. This is where leadership and management intertwine, and a successful leader needs to combine both into that perfect ‘cocktail’ to map out where you need to go to “win” as a team or an organisation; while remaining dynamic, exciting, and inspiring.

There are many people that come to mind when you think of a leader:

  • A political leader, such as Mr Abbott or Obama – passionate for their countries.
  • An explorer, like Cook cutting a path through the unknown to conquer and for the rest of his group to follow.
  • An executive, developing a company strategy or idea to beat the competition.

Yesterday we had the pleasure of listening to some Leadership Victoria alumnus reflecting on their Folio experience. The key points we took away were that during this developmental leadership program they meet inspiring people, undertake deep reflection, and are challenged to get out of their comfort zone.

We at the c word believe that leadership leads to a to a culture where we are capable, creative and co-operative team. This in turn creates great corporate culture and creativity spawns.

Some c words that spring to mind when thinking of leaders:

  • Creative
  • Communication
  • Collaboration
  • Crazy (but just the right amount)
  • Constructive

Jack & the c word crew.

Closing comment – Communication critical in campaign to tackle obesity


This week, we spent two days in Sydney live tweeting from our client’s third annual #ObesitySummit. The common call from politicians, economists, journalists, GPs, dieticians, public health specialists and researchers was the need for clearer communication.

There’s no doubt that communication is critical in tackling the obesity problem confronting Australia and countless other countries around the world. Whether it’s developing a consistent language to help GPs work with patients, less complex information for the communities and individuals, or campaigns to encourage people to take action, communications has an important role to play.

US economics professor John Cawley opened the summit with a keynote outline the range of costs associated with obesity, and the need to present an economic argument. This provided a clear outline of why we need to understand the economic impact and how we need to build that into communications about the issue.

Other speakers added further economic data on direct and in-direct costs to individuals and society. These included a great presentation from AusBIG, an organisation raising awareness of the complexity of safe and dignified physical management of bariatric patients.

News Ltd journalist Sue Dunlevy told the #ObesitySummit attendees that they needed to develop a much clearer message around obesity – because at the moment it’s far to complex. This was welcomed feedback, but is just further evidence of the complexity of the issue.

Other speakers included former Victorian Premier John Brumby, Victorian Cancer Council CEO Todd Harper & Obesity Australia board member Geoff Walsh AO.

Here are some of our tweets from the day:


Cheers, Jack & the c word crew