Queenslanders At Connect 17: A Supply Nation Connect Round Up

I can’t believe it’s been over a fortnight since we returned from Connect 2017.

A wonderful event, where despite arriving at 9am, I couldn’t get around to every booth. My only bug-bear of the day is that booth holders are well and truly packing up by 3pm.

That said, I walked the Connect17 halls meeting up with some old friends as well as new faces, spreading the important work of the SEQICC, FACCI and introducing our new Black Coffee initiative. Face-to-face relationship building is so important and in most cases, it takes years. Hopefully the investment will continue to pay off.

The biggest shout-out of the whole event was of course our very own Dennis Jose from Jabin Project Management winning Registered Supplier of the Year. He joins an alumni of talented and hardworking Queensland-based Supply Nation winners.

Here are a few images of #QueenslandersAtConnect2017.

Hope to see you next year. (And if I missed your booth for the #QueenslandersAtConnect17 post, then make sure you grab me for #QueenslandersAtConnect18!)

Cheers, Leesa Watego
President, SEQICC

We Are 27 Creative

The WeAre27 crew had the best spot on the floor of Connect17!

Lovely to see Aunty Lilla at Connect, with Mundunara Bayles, from the Blackcard Course

Some of the Gilimbaa family.

Carol and Greg from Murawin and Game Enough

Not quite still a Queenslander, but he’s our former President so he deserves a spot – Dwayne Good from InTravel Group.

The fabulous Young brothers from Young Guns Container Crew.

Gold Coast based Pronto Projects

Noel busy at Winangali Logistics.

No time for a selfie. The Ergonomic Workstations Products crew are hard at it.

Just loved the simplicity of Brendon’s booth this year.

Hello Boomerang!

Not 100% Queensland, but with offices in Queensland Karlka make the gallery.

Well done Dennis Jose from Jabin Project Management.

Always ready is Nancy Bamaga from Black Drum Productions.

Naturecall Environmental – leading the way.

Dezigna making a great impression.

Great work Karen – our former board member and one of the hardest workers you’ll ever meet.

The Carbon Crew.

Carol Vale from Murawin and Noel Niddrie from Winangali Logistics

It’s not Queensland business without including ground-breaking business woman Gil Mailman. With Chris from Boomerang and I.

Great to catch up with the Shine People team.

Looking great Kennelly Constructions.

Dennis Jose accepting Registered Supplier of the Year Award.

Congratulations Dennis

Queensland Indigenous Business Network – Call for consultant EOI

The South East Queensland Indigenous Chamber of Commerce in partnership with the Townsville and Region Indigenous Business Network (TRIBN) and Cairns and Region Indigenous Business Network (CRIBN) are seeking Expressions of Interest from suitably qualified and experienced consultants to help prepare a proposal, business plan and governance documents for a Queensland Indigenous Business Network or Chamber of Commerce.

Further information: QICC_ConsultantBrief
Applications are due: Friday 17th February 2017
Applications should be submitted to: secretary@seqicc.com.au
Questions: Leesa Watego, Iscariot Media, 0421 697 733

The ATO’s SuperStream streamlining super for small business

superstreamThe Australian Taxation Office’s new SuperStream initiative is a new way to pay superannuation for your business and organisation’s employees. Through SuperStream businesses can now pay electronically. ‘Normal’ superannuation means that super is paid to different funds in different ways. With SuperStream all over this work is streamlined with employers able to make payments through one channel.

We encourage all our members to have a look at the SuperStream Employer Checklist to see you Superstream will benefit you.

Do you own an Indigenous business that employs 19 or fewer people? If so, it’s time for you to get ready for SuperStream. The SuperStream deadline was 30 June 2016. But small businesses with 19 or fewer employees have been given more time, and now have until 28 October 2016 to have everything in place. Start now and realise the benefits sooner. #superstream 

Jump Starting into Design Thinking

Design Thinking workshop with Indigenous business.

Design Thinking workshop with Indigenous business. Image from Supply Nation

This time last week the SEQICC was very honoured to be part of the Jump Start Entrepreneur Workshop – Two Day Pilot Program on the Gold Coast. The high-energy and highly interactive workshop that focused on Design Thinking will go down as one of the business learning highlights for many of the workshop attendees.

The workshop was led by the Commonwealth Bank of Australia, in partnership with Qld Airports, HP Enterprises, and Supply Nation, along with Griffith University, the Queensland Government, and Australian Computer Society.

Winangali‘s Noel Niddrie said afterwards of the workshop,

The two day workshop represents a generous contribution into the real growth of Indigenous business. Rather than symbolic efforts to reconciliation, our people needs more of this type of “practical reconciliation” from corporates like CBA, Qld Airports, HP Enterprises and other sponsors.

design-thinking

Be the user. Image by Positive Social Solutions

During the first part of the day, participants were introduced to Design Thinking. Design Thinking is a methodology that allows businesses to create practical and creative solutions to specific problems. Following on from the introduction, participates spent the remainder of the first day looking at Empathy in relation to customers. Empathy exercises included interviews and mapping. Monique Proud from Positive Social Solutions says,

With each group designing from a strength-based, human-centred approach, it was really exciting to see all the ideas develop and adapt over the 2-days. At the end of the workshop all the teams had generated very innovative and practical solutions, to address a variety of challenges faced by Indigenous communities.

The workshop however wasn’t all chalk and talk, it was highly interactive throughout the two days. With five groups developing individual projects that they would then later present to the Lion’s Den for coins. Future participants should be prepared to get creative!

design-thinking-2

Image by Positive Social Solutions

Other feedback from participants:

The empathy exercises were really valuable, but I really got a lot out of the Business Model Canvas. I can really see us using this for business projects into the future.

Iscariot Media‘s Edward Ah Kee

 

The workshop was a great learning experience in gaining an understanding of design thinking and its application in a social and commercial planning context.

Tagai Management Consultants‘s Murray Saylor

Farewell Rochelle Cote

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Charlie Jia, Murray Saylor, Leesa Watego, Rochelle Cote, Karen Seage, Nancy Bamaga

Yesterday at our monthly management committee meeting, the board were joined by Dr Rochelle Cote. Rochelle has been a friend of the SEQICC over the past three years, as she engaged in a post-doctoral research fellowship at the University of Queensland. Having spent the past three years interviewing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander business people from all over South East Queensland, and combined with her research into Indigenous business in both Canada and the United States, Rochelle has provided us with guidance and support.

Yesterday we discussed her initial thoughts about her research findings, the different segments that go into making up the Indigenous business sector in South East Queensland, and proposed a number of strategies that we can initiate to support our community. It was great to have an opportunity to talk through a range of ideas. We look forward to engaging further with her work after it’s been thoroughly analysed and written up.

Rochelle departs Australia this week to take up an appointment as Assistant Professor at the University of Newfoundland. We wish Rochelle our best wishes and look forward to hopefully catching up with her in the north in the near future.

ATO Digital Showcase

Leesa Watego, representing South East Queensland Indigenous Chamber of Commerce -  image of view from the ATO Building in Brisbane

The view from the Australian Taxation Office Building on Elizabeth Street, Brisbane is pretty spectacular

Innovation and the ATO aren’t things most people would immediately think go in the same sentence. I was pleasantly surprised that they too when I had an opportunity this week to attend the ATO’s Digital Showcase event held in Brisbane. One of the presenter’s explained how the ATO was so focused in the past on those few non-complying tax payers, that they hadn’t found ways to properly support the vast majority of small business owners who want to do the ‘right thing’.

The Digital Showcase gave all of us an opportunity to see how digital technology can work for small business owners, streamlining operations and providing much needed resources. I captured some of the initiatives using Storify, and if you have an opportunity to attend a ATO Digital Showcase event I highly recommend it.

If you can’t get an event, I have Storified the ATO’s Digital Showcase for you.

Leesa Watego's Storified

 

Congratulations Terri Janke and Company for their Lend Lease Special Recognition Indigenous Business Award

terri-jankeEarlier this month, Terri Janke and Company were recognised for their extraordinary contribution to Supply Nation supplier diversity and the growth of Indigenous business. Terri Janke is a proud Wuthathi/Meriam woman born in Cairns who walks the talk. She has been running her own legal practice for more than 15 years, was NAIDOC Indigenous Person of the Year 2011 and Indigenous Legal Professional of the Year 2012 (Awarded by the Law Council of Australia).

The firm specialises in commercial law and has also developed a program that is uniquely tailored for Indigenous entrepreneurs and Indigenous organisation- Law Way: Indigenous Business and the Law – a 36pg booklet and an online video series that provides the education, support and guidance that are the foundations of starting a viable, sustainable business and ensuring financial autonomy.

This award is significant to Terri Janke and Company because it shows “our strong dedication to growing a strong Indigenous business sector”. Ms Janke said, ‘It’s nice to be recognised, but we celebrate with all Indigenous businesses, who seek to deliver their products and services professionally and efficiently, and with the goal of achieving economic independence on our own terms. It’s great to see the support of the many corporate and government in growing Indigenous business.’

Focus, patience and plenty of hard work: Zeeman Accounting

ZA-001Gamilaroi man Dane Zeeman, began his accounting practice in 2011. Born and raised in Toowoomba, Dane delivers taxation, small business support and audit services to clients throughout South East Queensland.

Dane says his biggest challenge in being in business is the massive commitment of time and energy. You can’t underestimate just how much time it takes to be in business, it’s always more than being an employee. Despite the energy it takes, Dane says

it’s important to be patient and remain focused on the long-term goals of your business.

While accounting is very competitive, Dane says,

with a focus on excellent customer service, we’ve built a great group of clients who refer more business to us.

We don’t always hear about customer service as a marketing strategy, but clearly it’s working for Zeeman Accounting.

Dane has a five tips for people new to business. They include:

  1. Do all the necessary research to know your industry, competitors and requirements for starting a business.
  2. Be prepared for ups and downs, and don’t take setbacks personally.
  3. Regularly monitor the business’ performance and be prepared to make adjustments along the way.
  4. Use technology and systems to create efficiencies and allow for business growth. This will also give you some time to enjoy life outside of the business.
  5. Make the most of opportunities to receive advice and support from mentors. Don’t be afraid to ask questions!

These tips will be very helpful to all new and existing Indigenous business owners. If you would like to connect with Dane, see the Zeeman Accounting on our Indigenous Business Directory.

2015 Queensland Reconciliation Awards

2015 Queensland Reconciliation Awards - Web icon without taglineNominate now in the 2015 Queensland Reconciliation Awards

Now in its 12th year, the 2015 Queensland Reconciliation Awards is open for nominations. The program recognises businesses, community organisations, educational institutions and initiatives that are advancing reconciliation in Queensland.

Such initiatives could be building cross-cultural understanding through employment or training initiatives, education partnerships or engaging with the local community.

Awards ambassador Johnathan Thurston, captain of the North Queensland Cowboys, said we can all play a part to bridge the gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians.

“It is through the work and dedication of many organisations across Queensland that we will see the lasting impacts of reconciliation for years to come,” Mr Thurston said.

“When we recognise those who are supporting reconciliation we are able to create a positive environment and an open dialogue about the importance and power of this issue.

“Nominations are now open for these awards. I encourage you to nominate an organisation you know is doing great work that you think should be celebrated.”

The Queensland Reconciliation Awards offers a total prize pool of $25,000 across the categories of business, education, community and partnership.

Last year’s recipients include Island & Cape (Business), Kirwan State High School (Education), South Cape York Catchments (Community), Mungalla Aboriginal Business Corporation and CSIRO Ecosystem Sciences (Partnership). Yugambeh Museum and Dreamworld received the overall

Premier’s Reconciliation Award.

Visit the website for more information and to download a nomination form.

Nominations close Friday 6 March 2015.

Award winners will be announced at a ceremony in Brisbane during National Reconciliation Week 2015.

Member Feature: Meet the ResearchCrowd

Research involves groupings of people in a collaborative exercise. The soundness of trust among its stakeholders is essential to a successful and ethical outcome. Trust has to function at all levels of the research enterprise – between participant and researcher, between research partners and sponsors, between researchers, institutions and the scientific community and lastly, and perhaps most importantly, with the wider community. Where trust persists, research can be sustained.[i]

Picture2All Indigenous communities deserve the right of access to research paradigms that are grounded in cultural competency and respect, and founded on mutual trust and ethical integrity. In practice, however, research conducted in Indigenous communities is, more often than not, seen as problematic and lacking. On the one side, research investigations are typically conducted by researchers whose values and perceptions are formed outside of the boundaries of the worldview of Indigenous people and community. On the other side, Indigenous communities remain suspicious and mistrustful of the ‘enterprise of research’, as stories are told about following ‘white way’ but not ‘right way’; of loss of ownership over community-shared experiences; of not hearing back on ‘our stories’; of being positioned outside of, and excluded from, decisions that determine and define the future life of the community; of the promise of reward, and the receipt of trinkets.

That’s where ResearchCrowd comes in.

Established in 2014 by four Indigenous sisters, ResearchCrowd is a small enterprise with a big vision! ResearchCrowd specialises in quantitative and qualitative Indigenous research, and offers a suite of research-related services (such as, evaluations, conferences, consulting, and more).

“ResearchCrowd is working to close the gap on understanding and inclusion between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians for the benefit of all Australians. We set up the business because we wanted to be involved in research that is responsive, respectful and rewarding for our people”, said Dr Catherine Demosthenous, Founder and Principal of ResearchCrowd.

Catherine, a respected academic, author and researcher, went on to say, “We wanted to change the way our mob think about research, and we wnted to change the way mainstream research is done. We wanted to engage in research that is culturally solid and ethically solid, and embraced by Indigenous people/communities. Research is so important. It’s the foundation of policies, programs and practices. It is translated into decisions and developments that impact every part of our lives. Research changes lives. And, I guess the bottom line for us is, we are working hard to build the evidence-bases needed to craft new and practical solutions to the complex social problems that challenge Indigenous people in contemporary Australia, and are doing this in culturally respectful and reverent ways.”

South East Queensland Indigenous Business Survey 2015

Blog-Post_SEQ-IBS-Non-Edit_MAX_150106.jpgThis month, the SEQICC is releasing the first South East Queensland Indigenous Business Survey. The aim of the survey is to gather information that will allow the SEQICC to plan for the coming decade. We want to provide the best services we can, but to do that, we need information in two key areas:

1. Indigenous Entrepreneurs: Indigenous entrepreneurs are the lifeblood of Indigenous business activity and are the core clients of the SEQICC. In the survey we will ask our entrepreneurs questions like: What type of business do you have? What kinds of services do you need? How can we help you grow your business?

Survey link: http://goo.gl/forms/53vEwGRmJ3

2. Indigenous Business Stakeholders: We’re continuously approached by agencies and government programs to provide assistance and advice. Yet these organisations and agencies are not our members, nor are they necessarily our core business. However we recognise that by supporting their work, they in turn support the work in the Indigenous community more broadly. In the survey, we will ask our stakeholders to tell us about their organisation, its needs and what products we can develop to assist them.

Stakeholders (including not-for-profit and government agencies) survey link: http://goo.gl/forms/Jqe8GuCOss

If you know anyone who fits into the above categories, please feel free to share the links. The more data we have the better service we can provide.

The Survey Tool

The survey tool we have chose to use is Google Forms. You do not need a password or log-in. The survey is anonymous. We will be posting the results of the survey on our website and through our newsletter. However you will need to go online in order to complete the survey.

If you are having difficult completing the online form, please let me know so that I can arrange an alternative option. My email is secretary@seqicc.com.au.

The survey tool will be open from the 6th to the 29th of January 2015.

I apologise in advance for the constant reminding about this initiative you will receive over the following month. However it’s important that we get a strong cross section of our community.

Cheers, Leesa Watego, CEO Iscariot Media, Acting President SEQICC

Introducing Rochelle Cote

damine,-rochelle,-murray,-seqicc,-2014This year we have had the pleasure of meeting, and now working with, Dr Rochelle R. Cote. Rochelle is a Canadian researcher attached to the University of Queensland. Her research in Australia is a continuation of projects in Canada and the United States focusing on urban Indigenous entrepreneurs and the factors that lead to successful businesses in urban marketplaces, like Brisbane.

Her work will ideally allow us to gain a greater appreciation of issues facing Indigenous entrepreneurs as well as look at similarities, differences and lessons applicable across these three countries. Her interests also include finding ways of improving access to resources for starting and maintaining successful businesses. More broadly, her work also looks at the link between social networks, cultures and the idea of ‘walking in two worlds’ – how individuals negotiate living within Indigenous and non-Indigenous contexts.

Over the past month, Rochelle has been assisting the SEQICC to develop the South East Queensland Indigenous Business Survey. The survey which will help us find out, with certainty, the issues that we are facing as an Indigenous business community, and how our organization can plan for the future.

Rochelle is in Brisbane and would like to be able to sit down and chat with Indigenous business owners from all sectors. If you’re interested in sharing your story and personal experiences, please feel free to contact her on 0401 806 765 or email Rochelle at r.cote@uq.edu.au.

Drumming their way to the international stage

seqicc-blog-nancy1Black Drum Productions Pty Ltd is a Brisbane-based events company, that was recently catapulted from local Festivals such as QPAC’s Clancestry, and into the international cultural events scene with its recent collaboration with the renowned Bangarra Dance Theatre for the 2014 G20 Summit.

The Welcome to Country performance for the Summit included elder and well-known singer Maroochy Barambah and local dance groups – Aboriginal dance group Nunukul Yuggera, and Torres Strait Islander dance group Malu Kiai Mura Buai.

Black Drum Productions played a large role in the G20 Cultural Celebrations, and pride itself in producing programs with cultural integrity. Nancy Bamaga, of BDP said,

It was an honour to work on the G20 Summit. Working with local artists to showcase our Australian Indigenous culture and talent to the world has been one of the highlights of our year.

This small one-woman enterprise, is clearly ready to take on the world!

 

Weaving cultures and building businesses

seqicc-blog-gsp-gilimbaa

If you were in Brisbane anytime of the past few months, you definitely could not have said “Gilimbaa, I’ve never seen any of their work”. This hard-working and talented team’s signature style has adorned Brisbane’s cityscape in readiness for this significant international event.

The G20 logo was designed by Gilimba with the artwork created by Indigenous artist Riki Salam. The logo represents a weaving together of nations, a gathering of leaders and the journeys they will embark upon throughout 2013-14. The triangle shapes represent the members, invited guests and international organisations that attended the G20.

About the logo, Gilimba says,

The logo pays tribe to Australia’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population and their ancient cultures. It is inspired by the traditional Torres Strait Islander weaving pattern of the Coconut Palm leaf. Connecting shapes, representing the Aboriginal Rainbow Serpent legend, form a track through the discussions and events of the host year and reflect the G20 journey. The weaving also forms a fish which represents the Dhari, a traditional Torres Strait Islander headdress. The fish is a reminder of the connection between people and the sea – the source of life and food. The colours represent the diverse landscape of Australia from red desert sands to golden beaches and lush tropic rain forests, and economic sectors such as resources, infrastructure and manufacturing.

Congratulations to Gilimbaa on an job well done. We look forward to seeing more great work from Amanda, David, Riki and the rest of the team well into the future.

 

 

 

 

Congratulations Carbon Media

seqicc-blog-wayne-carbon

Congratulations to Wayne Denning and Carbon Media. Carbon Media have been long time members of the South East Queensland Indigenous Chamber of Commerce, with Wayne Denning a also a former board member.

Last week, Carbon Media received then 2014 Screen Producers of Australia Breakthrough Business Award at the Association’s ceremony at Crown Promenade in Melbourne. The award, is voted by an industry panel, and recognises a production company who has made a significant breakthrough. In early 2013, Carbon Media successfully pitched the concept of a mixed media clip 5 Kangaroos starring Indigenous Australian singer Jessica Mauboy to global television giant, Sesame Street for it’s iconic Letters and Numbers segment. The clip was the first to feature Indigenous Australian content in the show’s 44 years of airing in 120 countries. This initial success has led to additional creative projects with Sesame Street.

Carbon Media is the only Queensland recipient of the 2013 Screen Australia Enterprise Program.

Congratulations to Carbon Media on their continued excellence in business and Indigenous business.

Indigenous Business Networking – Friday Coffee Morning

This morning I was honoured to host the very first Indigenous Business Networking (IBN) – Friday Coffee Morning. It was an informal affair, with twelve people coming along to a small cafe tucked away in Brisbane’s North West.

The idea for the Indigenous Business Networking (IBN) – Friday Coffee Morning came from Sydney via Twitter. I was inspired by Gavin Heaton’s blog post a while back about how seven years ago (or maybe more) a group of Sydney marketing/advertising/social media bloggers got together in a Sydney cafe on a Friday morning, and … seven years later they’re still connecting. I thought –

imagine what kinds of connections we, as Indigenous business people and entrepreneurs create if there was a regular space for Mob to get together.

When I started my first business in 1994, I knew nothing. No-one in my family owned a business, none of my friends were interested in being in business and predictably, I stumbled through it. I made one thousand mistakes time and time again. Twenty years later, I may still be stumbling because my business is constantly evolving, but I certainly know more than I did back then. I can’t imagine what the past two decades would have looked like, had I been able to associate with other Murris who were also in business. We were too few and far between back then. But not anymore.

The SEQICC directory alone, attests to the diversity of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander businesses today. I believe that in South East Queensland we have Indigenous businesses enough to warrant a weekly networking event. There are enough of us that being an Indigenous entrepreneur is “becoming normal”.

How does the coffee morning work?

The idea of the IBN – Friday Coffee Morning is that whoever is in town turns up – you don’t need to RSVP, you don’t book. You literally just “turn up”. There is no cost (apart from your coffee and/or breakfast), and you stay for 20 minutes or two hours. When you arrive, you work the room, swap cards, meet new people, and catch up with Mob you already know.

If no one RSVPs, how do I know who will turn up?

You don’t. In some circles it’s called serendipity (or luck). Because it’s a weekly (and somewhat random event), it’s up to you to find the positive in the people around you. How about, don’t turn up and just talk about yourself and your own business, but rather listen to other people and find out what they’re up to. Be open to opportunity. Be the entrepreneur you say you are, or are aspiring to be.

As one famous business woman, one who is a huge influence on me, once said,

“You never know where the big ideas could come from.”

Today, at the first IBN – Friday Coffee Morning there was a lot of discussion around the table about business challenges, technology (someone bought along a new gadget, and it got passed around the tables so we could all have a closer look), we swapped business cards and we talked about what our organisations and business are looking for. I have no idea what we will talk about next week, but I’m excited even through the unknown.

We’re going to rotate the venues throughout South East Queensland

The SEQICC’s original brief when it was established was that it service the whole of South East Queensland. This huge area extends from the Sunshine Coast down to the Gold Coast, out to Toowoomba and Ipswich and all parts of central Brisbane. This means that necessarily, to be fair, the IBN – Friday Coffee Morning will have to move across the region. I don’t know what a good cafe is in your area, but you do. So why don’t you volunteer to be a host? See the link below to find out what is involved in being a host.

Where could this event lead? 

Even after just one morning, I personally have two visions for the future of the IBN – Friday Coffee Morning:

  1. That connections and relationships are created that lead to the establishment of new and stronger Indigenous businesses.
  2. That each person who attends learns something new or makes a new connection so that their own organisation and/or business is strengthened.

I also have two other visions that right now are just In my imagination but are just as imperative, that I will share with you:

  1. That the IBN – Friday Coffee Morning becomes such a part of Indigenous business in SEQ, that people from outside SEQ seek it out when they get here.
  2. That the IBN – Friday Coffee Morning becomes something that other communities see as being useful enough to start their own. (I’d love it if one day I turned up in Cairns on a Friday, and expected to head to the local IBN – Friday Coffee Morning!.

I know I’m jumping the gun a bit. But imagine it. Imagine what kinds of national connections could be made when we swap ideas and build relationships across regions? I know that my imagination is probably getting carried away with me (something that happens often), but everyday I’m inspired by our Mob who own their own businesses.

Being in business is a hard gig. It’s often so much harder than pulling a regular fortnightly wage. We have challenges that others can only imagine. But the freedom and creativity that we experience in the end, are for the most part, well worth the cost. I’m also 100% committed to South East Queensland and growing our business sector here. I hope you are to, and I sincerely hope that you will join me in this initiative, and in growing and supporting our Mob in business.

Cheers, Leesa Watego, CEO Iscariot Media, Acting-President SEQICC

Links

  • More about the original Sydney Coffee Morning: http://servantofchaos.com/social-media-coffee-mornings-sydney
  • How to become a host, what’s involved and the 2014/2015 Calendar https://docs.google.com/a/iscariotmedia.com/document/d/1F8-9bv57-37kVmhBJ8Ex_FaRYOeDm_yZkrbqYFTzYmg/edit?usp=sharing
  • The SEQICC Facebook page (see our few photos from this morning) https://www.facebook.com/seqicc

 

Congratulations Carbon Media

Carbon Telstra Group Photo 2

The Carbon Media team.

Congratulations to a long-time SEQICC member, and former Board Member, Wayne Denning from Carbon Media, on their recent Queensland Telstra Business Award.

Carbon Media has won the 2014 Queensland Telstra Business Award in the Small Business Category off the back of a highly successful 12 months including being the first production company to produce Australian Indigenous content for Sesame Street.

2013 was a significant year of growth for Carbon Media, in which we made television history with 5 Kangaroos starring Jessica Mauboy. Produced for Sesame Street’s iconic Letters and Numbers segment – the mixed media film was a first in the show’s 44 tenure.

Successful delivery led to an additional 3 films being produced for Sesame Street for their next season, T is for Turtle, Shipwreck Discovery and Juggling 3.

Wayne Denning, Founder and Executive Producer at Carbon Media, is thrilled to be a recipient of the Queensland Telstra Business Award in this Category.

“The past 12 months has seen Carbon take quantum leaps. It’s a culmination of many years of hard work and commitment from an extraordinary creative team and now we’re taking it to a new level,” Wayne said. “Being a recipient of an award of this calibre not only validates our business model but also adds credibility. It confirms Carbon is on the right trajectory and gives us confidence and excitement for the future.”

In addition to Sesame Street, Carbon also produced hit children’s TV show, Handball Heroes which aired on ABC3 in August to December 2013 and was one of four recipients to receive Screen Australia Enterprising funding helping us to further our development and production slate.

“This recognition will help us build on our existing profile with corporate clients and network partnerships here in Australia and overseas perpetuating growth,” Wayne said. “It says we’re staying true to our core values, continuing to deliver innovative creative work while affecting social change. We couldn’t be more proud.”

Accounting scholarships for Indigenous Australians

indigenous_accountants_imageIndigenous Accountants Australia have been active recently in securing five scholarship places with CPA Australia. Five Indigenous people are invited to apply. Being a member of CPA Australia  is a great opportunity to become a certified practising accountant. The scholarship will assist recipients to meet all the educational requirements needed to attain CPA status, including payment of professional level segment fees and the first year’s membership fees as an Associate (ASA).

All applicants are directed to apply having read and completed the information on the scholarship page and the ATSI scholarship application form. Applications should provide certified true copies of their supporting documentation, and be emailed to scholarships@cpaaustralia.com.au.

 

Image Credit: Supplied by Indigenous Accountants Australia

Member Feature: STARS Institute of Learning and Leadership

global_publishing-3187Wendy Watego and Vicki Scott really understand the idea and practice of partnership. STARS Institute of Learning and Leadership is a not for profit organisation that seeks to provides services to both individual First Nations people and people working with them, as well as organisations who want to ensure their vision has the buy-in of their most important resource – their people – and that there is nothing in the way of their people contributing to that vision.

With Wendy’s background in education and Vicki’s expertise in government, it wasn’t always going to be a guaranteed business partnership success. Despite being relative novices to small business, their individual and joint persistence and a willingness to look hard at themselves, has enabled this on-the-surface odd couple, to gradually develop a clear goal and strong business model.

We’ve been operational since 2008, and it’s taken us a good five years, to really understand who our audience (market) is and what we’re “selling

Now that Wendy and Vicki are in their sixth year and with their first book on its way to the publisher, what advice do they give others who are getting ready to embark on the same journey?

Be very clear on what your vision is, and why it is important to you.  Make sure you are passionate about what you are doing, and not just looking for money.  This will sustain you in the quiet times.  Ask yourself “what is the impact on you if you don’t follow your passion and dream”.  Do your due diligence – make sure there is an identified need, a gap in the market and how your business will fill that gap.  Be very clear on why you are unique, and identify anything you think might stop you from achieving what you want. We understand the importance of building a supportive environment that also acts as a benchmark for successful businesses.

Wendy and Vicki’s business is about working with individuals and communities to assist them to get rid of beliefs that limit their possibilities. But as savvy business women, they also work on themselves and their business. With empowering beliefs abounding, the sky is the limit.

Leesa Watego

Image credit: STARS Institute of Learning and Leadership 

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Member Feature: CJ’s Island Pizza

313508_233587303367030_1478794070_nIn the pizza business for two and half years, Charlie Jia, aka CJ, could tell you a thing or two about resilience and patience. ​
CJ’s Island Pizza (CJs) is located on North Stradbroke Island which has a local population of approximately 3,000 residents.  Access to the island is by vehicle barges or passenger ferries.  The island is a tourist destination boasting some of the best beaches in Queensland, great surf, excellent fishing, extensive camping and holiday accommodation and a rich history of European settlement and a continuous Aboriginal culture​.  Although the focus of CJ’s business plan is the local population, tourism or visitation is an important component of its ongoing viability.  Poor weather, natural disasters, like the severe bush fire right in the middle of the high season, and rising costs to access the island present a number of obstacles for business.
With these impacts to visitation looming, the CJ’s team had to stay focused and come up with new solutions. Some of these solutions included:
  • Working with accommodation operators to ensure CJ’s was included in their service information
  • Negotiating partnerships to have a number of operators include a CJ’s deal in their holiday packages
  • The creation of a loyalty program for local customer
  • Adding a catering was an additional service that was promoted during the bush fires on the Island with CJ’s catering for the SES and Fire Fighters

All of these strategies, have help to raise the profile of CJ’s both as a local business, as well as an essential stop for visitors to Stradbroke Island. Charlie’s experience at working on his consultancy business Karma Lifestyles for a decade before heading to the island, and his understanding and familiarity with working with partners and knowing the importance of networking, have all assisted CJ’s to grow through the tough times. Charlie’s decades of experience are reflected in the advice he gives to other people thinking about starting out in business. He offers this,

If you have got a great idea, certainly do your research, test your product or service if you can, make sure a lot of “somebodies” will want to buy your product or service, get yourself a business mentor, join a local business network, plan ahead and stay focussed on that plan, work hard and have some fun.  Make sure your business becomes part of your life and not something you do separately.

Charlie, the founding President of the South East Queensland Indigenous Chamber of Commerce, a position he held for six years, also believes in the importance of business groups. He says he has found that Chambers of Commerce, like the SEQICC,

offer a platform to meet like minded business owners, sharing stories, sharing the ups and downs of business and creating possible potential opportunities

Creating and maintaining a locally driving business raises many challenges. Like cooking a great pizza, Charlie and the whole CJ’s team have spent time working on their recipe and building a great base. We look forward to seeing the next stage of the pizza delivery business journey.

Leesa Watego

Image credit: Supplied by CJ’s Island Pizza. 

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