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Blog

How to run a 'NOT a Festival'

Looking over the two blogs on the idea of a Redfern event (March 21 2015) made me sigh - hope springs eternal when working with the community.                                                              [...]

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How to measure 'national wellbeing'

Lord Gus O’Donnell delivered the Institute of Public Administration NSW’s Spann Oration 2014 (1) and, as an example of leaders and decision makers grappling with increasingly complex issues, spoke to the challenge of measuring 'national wellbeing'. It would be necessary to develop qualitative and non-financial measures to guide public policy and programs.So what can we learn from the UK government experience? [...]

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What to consider if you want to shrink your business

I’ve often thought that a corner store had a lot of potential. You know, for 'When I retire...'. Chatting to neighbours...  A nice lifestyle... When 7 Eleven stores rolled out, I watched closely. In the last few years, we’ve seen other brands of convenience stores open, offer two-for-one deals, then close. They were located on a street (strip [...]

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How to decide if property is an asset or liability

Ten years ago my colleague, Michael, spoke about having to advise an owner on the best development plan for an international -standard, 27 hole competition golf course. The owner was wanting to position his resort as the ‘St Andrews of the Southern Hemisphere’. My colleague’s advice? ‘Sell it ASAP. The value of the golf course will kill the [...]

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How to assess a ‘retail opportunity’ 1. Pharmacy

Last year I asked my local pharmacist if the senior gent cleaning the shelves was bored at home. ‘No,’ he replied, ‘that’s my father-in-law. Five years ago we had two full-time shop assistants, now I have one. Dad comes in one day a week to do the things I’d have to do on a Sunday when we are [...]

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How to put a $ value on a local festival

     Having read the blog about the demise of festivals, you might think it's not a good time to launch a new festival.Most commentators on the recent spate of high-profile festival failures have recognised the ‘orange flashing lights’ too late: a lack of interest (low advanced ticket sales), management issues (headline acts cancelling because they cannot earn [...]

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How to decide whether to say Yes or No to a career opportunity

I remember one occasion when, as a board member, I arrived for a performance of the signature annual event. The lack of ‘foyer buzz’ prompted me to check my ticket to see whether it was the right date and time.The concert hall was about 30% capacity (budget was 67% per concert) so I texted the treasurer to see [...]

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How to work out if the $'s got to the bank

The list of “creative” ways in which revenue can be "booked not banked"(1)  continues to grow. In 2013, the sale price for a company (dubbed the “Enron of Norway”) was based on revenue to be earned over the life of the contract (see multiples of earnings, Financial Performance Unveiled, Chapter 13). However, the court proceedings revealed [...]

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How to be alert to a possible 'hit' on earnings

I remember having to report a loss on a new course which was touted as a 'masterful coup'.  When colleagues support a commercial idea as 'the next success story', it’s hard to justify why you got it wrong. Reporting an unexpected loss is a time when you realise that, at the end of the business day, [...]

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How to prepare to become a new business

One of my 'character building' experiences was trying to convince State Managers of the importance of reporting the Sources of Revenue rather than just Total Revenue. Lesson in life 1: the impact of incentives on behaviour: State Managers were given bonuses on total revenue so they didn't want to prompt a State committee discussion about 'Why [...]

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