The National Learning Institute

Business & Commerce Category

family businesses

What happens in family businesses when marriages/partnerships break up?

November 3, 2016 No Comments

Philip Pryor ©2016

Families are complex. Then when significant assets and money are added to the equation, they become even more complex.

Juggling family relationships and money, especially over generations is no simple task. While blood is very much thicker than water, sometimes money can really thicken things up to the point where everything just stops working.

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How green (really green) is your office?

February 7, 2013 No Comments

by Andrew O’Keeffe, Hardwired Humans ©2013

A recent study investigated the academic literature to assess the link between office environments that reflect our ancestral setting of the savannah plains – including sunlight, greenery and physical movement – and found a positive influence that these factors have on employees’ physical and psychological health and on productivity..

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Successful Business

The REAL SECRETS of a successful business!

December 20, 2012 No Comments

What are the success factors for starting a new business?  And are there any simple steps that every business needs to follow?  Read Bob Selden’s personal story of how he found out through trial and error, just what these secrets are . . .

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What is this thing called Innovation?

September 18, 2012 No Comments

According to Booz and Company, in 2010 the world’s largest corporations spent over $550,000,000,000 on R & D.

And even with that amount of money invested, organisations are still struggling to come up with new and innovative products.  Big Pharma spent $45 billion in 2009, yet the number of new drugs they are going to produce has dropped by 44%.  Slowly it is dawning on organisations that . . .

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Should your strategy be short term or long term focussed?

June 18, 2012 No Comments

Management consultants, authors and commentators have long advocated the need for organisations to take a longer term view rather than the short term view taken by many.

In the 90s in particular, developing a strategic vision or direction was seen as a business imperative (with for example, processes such as the Balanced Scorecard and Weighted Strategy Maps).  Whilst this view might still be appreciated and indeed talked about by senior managers, the reality may be quite different.

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powerful customers no

How powerful are your customers?

December 13, 2011 No Comments

How powerful are your customers?

Three recent news stories in the Australian media, at first seemingly unrelated, have caught my attention in recent days.

“Norris’ pay cut after rate hike fury”

Commonwealth Bank of Australia customers have exercised their customer power over the chief executive Ralph Norris’s decision last November to push through a super-sized interest rate rise on mortgages.

“Airline decides Singapore Girl ads still fly”

Singapore Girl makes her return to advertising after a five-year absence in a spot that harks back to an age when she was filmed in exotic locations delivering her trademark customer service.

“Joyce has no choice but to push into Asia”

Almost three years after he took the reins, the chief executive of Qantas, Alan Joyce, has taken the biggest gamble of his career. It is also one of – if not the – biggest bets in Qantas’s 90-year history. Joyce’s decision to shift the Flying Kangaroo’s centre of gravity towards a lower cost base in Asia threatens to test the goodwill it has gained from the Australian public which could unleash it’s customer power.

But there’s a common theme in all three stories: customer power.

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Does your organisation pass the longevity test?

June 29, 2011 No Comments

Over recent times, we’ve seen organisations such as Arthur Anderson, World Com, Enron, Lehman Brothers and many more disappear.  In fact, of the top 25 industrial corporations in the United States in 1900, only two remained on that list at the start of the 1960s, and of the top 25 companies on the Fortune 500 in 1961, only six remain there today. Can we place the blame on the GFC (e.g. Lehman Brothers) or lack of corporate governance (e.g. Enron) or perhaps, poor leadership?   These may well be the excuses, but they are not the causes. So, what leads to organisational longevity?

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Google and the new management challenge

June 10, 2011 No Comments

googleLars Rasmussen, the Sydney based co-founder of Google maps has just left Google to join Facebook. Nothing new in that you might say. People leave organisations all the time. However, the reasons given by Rasmussen may suggest some important messages for managers in other ground-breaking companies. They also tend to mirror recent moves by similar creative people leaving other more traditional organisations.

His reasons?

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To outsource or not to outsource?

June 10, 2011 No Comments

outsource-colorSince 2009, two of Australia’s biggest trade unions have been outsourcing one of their core business activities – member recruitment – to the private sector. The firm, Work Partners employing 90 recruiters, was paid $500 per new union member recruited. As a headline in The Australian newspaper put it, “Unions employ ultimate in outsourcing”


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What are you worth?

September 2, 2010 No Comments


Despite the recession, CEOs continue to pay themselves vast sums while expecting others to suffer – with those CEOs who slashed their workforces the deepest earning the most. As a new report puts it, “CEOs laid off thousands while raking in millions.”

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