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Top tips for women in leadership

Today is International Women’s Day and four of La Trobe University’s experts were asked to give their own top tips for a career as a leader. Three of them are currently connected to the La Trobe Business School.

 

Hone your emotional intelligence

Professor Suzanne Young, Head of the Department of Management, Sport and Tourism at the La Trobe Business School, gives these tips for women in business:

  • Continually work on improving your emotional intelligence. This is not a static characteristic, but can be learnt and improved upon.
  • Think strategically in terms of work priorities and activities you put your hand up for. Be proactive rather than reactive and move away from focusing on the details as you move up the career ladder.
  • Expand your circle of influence through external and internal networks.

Professor Suzanne Young advises women striving for leadership roles to hone their EI.

 

Lead by doing what you love

Dr Susan Inglis is a Professor of Practice in Management and Director of Executive Education at La Trobe Business School, where she teaches leadership. Her career spans more than 20 years as a management consultant, coupled with 10 years of postgraduate study in organisational learning, leadership and management.

Susan offers the following tips for women in leadership roles:

  • Don’t be afraid to take up space – you have a unique range of gifts to offer the world, so share those gifts!
  • Surround yourself with people who believe and support you and remind you of your strengths.
  • It’s easier to lead when doing what you love. Reflect on what brings you joy and then go for it – create an opportunity to inspire others!

‘Surround yourself with people who remind you of your strengths,’ says La Trobe’s Dr Susan Inglis.

 

Make complacency your enemy

Former CEO of the Institute of Public Administration Australia (Victoria), Dr Geraldine Kennett, applies her business and collaboration skills to manage La Trobe Business School’s MBA Program. Her tips for women in leadership are:

  • Play to your strengths – empower yourself by understanding your strengths and using them to overcome your weaknesses.
  • Engage others – seek advice from those senior to you, motivate your peers and coach your staff for success.
  • Make complacency your enemy – apply passion, performance and persistence instead.

Dr Geraldine Kennett encourages passion, performance and persistence.

 

Develop your self-confidence

La Trobe’s Associate Pro Vice-Chancellor of Academic Partnerships and co-author of Women and Money in Australia: Across the generations, Professor Amalia Di Iorio gives her own advice trifecta:

  • Believe in yourself and have confidencein your abilities.
  • Actively seek opportunities to continuously improve your skills, knowledge and visibility in the organisation.
  • Get to know your team and their capabilities, and provide team members with opportunities to maximise their potential.

Professor Amalia Di Iorio recommends confidence, self-belief and a team focus.

 

Perhaps these points can be distilled into three:

  1. Know and trust in your knowledge and abilities.
  2. Look for opportunities to build your self-knowledge, skills and networks.
  3. Support and motivate your team to reach their potential.

As a woman in leadership, you don’t have to change the world single-handedly – but you can be part of the change. With passion, awareness and a drive to bring your team with you on the journey, there’s no limit to what you can achieve.

 

This blog post was originally published on NEST. Read the original article.

Disruptive Innovation – What is it all about?

La Trobe Business School recently had the pleasure of hosting Prof Dr Markus Münter from Hochschule für Technik und Wirtschaft (htw saar), Saarbrücken, Germany. Professor Münter is the Chair of Microeconomics, Strategy and Entrepreneurship at htw saar, and built on previous collaboration initiatives between Dr Alex Maritz, Professor of Entrepreneurship at LBS. The duo has previously hosted Google Start-up weekends in Europe, together with initiatives at various start-up incubators and accelerators.

 

Prof Dr Alex Maritz and Prof Dr Markus Münter

 

During his visit, Professor Münter enhanced research and engagement activities at La Trobe Business School, and in particular, presented his internationally renowned work on Disruptive Innovation to LTU’s PhD students, MBA students and Accelerator participants. He informed that disruptive theory is in danger of becoming a victim of its own success. Despite broad dissemination, theory’s core concepts have been widely misunderstood and its basic tenants misapplied. He demystified this by providing inferences from an economics of disruption perspective. He explained disruption from the context of technology regimes, origins of new knowledge and impact of firms and market structures. From a pragmatic perspective, he provided a galley of disruptive technologies, such as mobile internet, advanced robotics, automation of knowledge, AI, and next generation genomics. He specifically demonstrated disruptive innovation nuances applicable to entrepreneurs and start-ups, identifying disruptors such as airbnb, spotify, UBER, Netflix, WhatsApp and Alibaba.

Professor Münter has kindly made one of his presentations available here

 

Developing a Sustainability Disposition

In 2008, La Trobe Business School (LBS) was one of the first schools to become a Signatory to PRME. LBS has been actively engaged in both embedding responsible management within its school as well as contributing to the PRME network. LBS is starting their second term as a PRME Champion. Ten years on, LBS was selected to be a PRME Champion along with 38 other business schools from across the world who are taking transformative action on integrating the Sustainable Development Goals into three key areas: curriculum, research and partnerships.

 

In 2015, LBS put in place a second year subject focused on Sustainability which is mandatory for all students enrolled in any Business Degree at La Trobe University. Because of its focus on developing a sustainability disposition in students rather than just educating them about the issues, the course has been very well received by students and continues to be an exemplar of cross-disciplinary subject content within the School.  Dr Swati Nagpal  was interviewed about this innovative course.

 

Dr Swati Nagpal receiving the LBS Award in recognition of her continual support of the PRME initiative

 

What is La Trobe Business School’s approach to sustainability in the classroom?

LBS understands the obligation as an institution to advocate for responsible management education throughout the school; in its four departments and its research centres, and by advocating and supporting responsible management initiatives and operations across the university.

A patchwork of subjects addressing Sustainability Education in Business degree courses at La Trobe was replaced in 2015 by a core second year subject entitled ‘BUS2SUS – Sustainability’, for all students enrolled in any Business degree. More than 2,500 students are now enrolled in this compulsory subject every year.

The subject is based on a blended learning design that allows for greater scalability across the entire portfolio of majors within Business and across all our campuses in Australia and abroad. With sustainability as the lens or context for change, students are introduced to systems thinking, tools for solving wicked problems, and the role of advocacy in managing change for sustainability.

 

How have you approached the design and delivery of this core course?

The process of embedding sustainability thinking into the core business curriculum presented a number of challenges, including distinguishing sustainability from related streams of corporate social responsibility (CSR) and non-financial measurement and reporting. The curriculum design was ultimately guided by the need for a future set of skills, rather than by identifying disciplinary content that business graduates might require. These skills include critical thinking, creative problem solving, ethical awareness and teamwork. For example, by working in small groups in class, and engaging with ‘wicked’ global sustainability issues such as climate change, global poverty and renewable energy, students are required to apply a systems lens to examining the true nature of the issues and potential solutions.

There is also an emphasis on creating a ‘safe space’ in classes to tackle often controversial social and environmental issues such as indigenous disadvantage in Australia, the refugee crisis and the potential for a sugar tax. This has required class teachers to be briefed and trained in pedagogical techniques that require reflexive practice and approaches to manage conflict.

 

The course puts a focus on developing a sustainability disposition. Why do you think this is important?

Research on education for sustainability, student surveys and teaching feedback have taught us that developing graduate skills for sustainability is not enough to create the impetus required for students to be change agents for sustainability, there also needs to be an emphasis on creating a ‘mindset’ change. This is enabled in the subject through use of a range of pedagogical design elements to create a learning environment that seeks to bring about this change. For example, through the use of case studies, examples and problem-based scenarios that require students to reflect on their underlying values base and question the status quo in management thought. As such, this subject places a focus on both generic graduate skills such as critical thinking and problem solving, while also creating the disposition towards sustainability and ethical decision-making.

 

How are the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) embedded into this course?

Using the SDGs as a guide, students are introduced to the interplay between the social, environmental and economic pillars of sustainability, and the implications for ethically complex decision-making. Ultimately, educating students new to the SDGs places us in a unique position as the entry point in their educational experience. We believe this is critical in developing their awareness of global issues and challenges so that they can enter the workplace fully equipped to advance and implement policies and practices that will contribute to sustainable business.

 

What advice would you have for other schools thinking of putting something similar into place?

The question of whether business schools should approach embedding sustainability into core curriculum or as an elective has not been resolved to date. Our experience at LBS in taking the ‘core subject’ approach has been positive since we have the institutional support in terms of the University’s focus on sustainability and our historical emphasis and ethos of social justice. Therefore, gaining institutional support for furthering the sustainability agenda is key, along with the resources to make it happen.

The challenge in any modern business subject in sustainably is an emphasis on both the development of graduate skills and students’ disposition towards sustainability and ethical decision-making. This requires modern educators to span the boundary of the classroom and identify opportunities to engage with industry partners and other stakeholders to continuously produce innovative teaching materials and approaches that inspire and motivate students to pursue business ideas that align with the SDGs.

 

 

What other initiatives at your school you are particularly proud of in this area especially in relation to the SDGs.

In 2017, LBS embarked on a series of workshops that brought together delegates from business, local government, education, not for profit and community sectors to discuss what the SDGs mean for them, and create opportunities for collaboration among the sectors towards implementation of the goals.

This outreach project on the SDGs is an international effort by our CR3+ network which includes LBS and PRME Champions Audencia Nantes School of Management (Nantes, France), ISAE/FGV (Curitiba, Brazil) and Hanken School of Economics (Helsinki, Finland). All four business schools have committed to hosting similar workshops in their countries.

Two Australian workshops were held in Wollongong and Albury-Wodonga on 15/11/17 and 29/11/17 respectively. In addition to the original aims as set out in the project proposal, the choice to focus on regional areas was two-fold; firstly, to develop our regional campus’ capacity to build and sustain cross-sector engagement and partnerships on the theme of the SDGs, and secondly, to focus on areas where UN Global Compact Network Australia presence is limited.

 

This post is part of a special feature throughout the month of February focused on schools in Australia and New Zealand. This blog post was originally published on PRIMEtime. Read the original article.

 

La Trobe University’s New Sydney Campus

At La Trobe Business School, students can study a range of Business courses at one of Australia’s leading universities in our new state-of-the-art Sydney Campus. Officially opened in 2017, the new campus is ideally located in the centre of the city’s business precinct. It is close to part-time work and internship opportunities, and is just minutes’ walk away from major transport hubs, shopping centres, vibrant café districts and a number of Sydney’s world-renowned icons.
With just under 1000 students, the Sydney Campus offers a friendly and supportive community for you to learn and make friends.  Our personalised learning approach has attracted students from more than 30 countries to the campus, which contributes to a rich, multicultural education experience.

 

Find out more about this exciting campus in the video below:

 

Business School Programs offered at Sydney are:

  • LMBBSY – Bachelor of Business
  • LBCSY – Bachelor of Accounting
  • LBIBSY – Bachelor of International Business
  • LMPMSY – Master of Management (Project Management)
  • LMPASY – Master of Professional Accounting

James Fazzino appointed as Vice Chancellor’s Fellow

At the end of last year, James Fazzino was appointed La Trobe University Vice-Chancellor’s Fellow. James is not new to La Trobe University. He is a La Trobe alumnus, holding a Bachelor of Economics (Honours) from the University. He is also currently a member of the La Trobe Business School Advisory Board, and in 2016 was appointed as an Adjunct Professor in the La Trobe Business School.

 

James Fazzino

James has had a successful career in the international chemicals industry, and has just concluded a highly successful eight-year term as Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of Incitec Pivot Limited. He also served as the Chief Financial Officer and Finance Director at Incitec, and had senior finance roles in ICI/Orica including CFO Chemicals Group, Assistant Treasurer and Head of Investor Relations. Under his leadership, Incitec was transformed from a fertiliser company operating in two Australian states to a global diversified industrial chemicals business. It is now the world’s second largest supplier of commercial explosives, and Australia’s largest manufacturer and supplier of fertilisers. James is currently Chair of Manufacturing Australia, a CEO-led coalition of Australia’s 10 leading manufacturing companies, and is a member of the Australian Energy Market Operator’s Expert Advisory Panel.

 

In his new role, James will advise the Vice-Chancellor as well as the current and future leadership of the La Trobe Business School on the strategic directions for the School.

 

The Business School will benefit greatly from James’ expertise and experience in leading an ASX Top 50 company. He will share his experience with the next generation of leaders, and will build new industry and research links and partnerships in the School. James will teach students about the practical experience of business delivery, assist in developing a network of business practitioners to teach across the School, and will be available to mentor both staff and students.

 

James has recently been interviewed by NEST, was interviewed about his new position at LTU by Skynews and wrote an article about putting customers at the centre in the energy debate for The Australian.

La Trobe Business School – End of Year party

Last week, December 13, all LBS staff and PhD Candidates were invited to Plaka Greek Restaurant for the La Trobe Business School End of Year Function.

Even though it was a typical Australian, scorching hot and 37-degree day, the Christmas cheer was all around. It was an afternoon filled with music, singing, laughter, good company and nice food. It was also great to see staff from the regional campuses joining the party.

The music was provided by Decky Music Band, with our own Dr. Marthin Nanere on the guitar & harmonica. 

Some staff dressed up in Christmas-themed attire, wearing Santa hats.

Throughout the afternoon, several groups joined the band on stage to sing some great Christmas classics.

The department of Entrepreneurship, Innovation and Marketing teamed up with the Department of Management, Sport and Tourism and sang Feliz Navidad together.

The LBS admin team seemed to have some true singers in the making among their team and did a great job performing their songs.

And the executive team also joined in for a song.

The La Trobe Business School wishes everybody a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! Thank you for all your effort and hard work over 2017.

LBS Staff Awards

La Trobe Business School held its end of Year Forum on December 13. An important part of the End of Year Forum were the LBS Research Awards and LBS Awards presented to outstanding staff members of the school.

 

Professor Kamran Ahmed presented the LBS Research Awards.

The first award went to Esin Ozdil. Esin was awarded the Early Career Researcher Award for her contribution to the study of Accounting, and particularly her innovative work in examining Accounting in the Public Sector.

Dr. Esin Ozdil receiving her Early Career Researcher Award

Lily Nguyen was awarded the Mid Career Research Award in recognition of her important contribution to the study of corporate innovation, institutional investors and corporate disclosure.

Dr. Lily Nguyen receiving her Mid Career Research Award

Jointly receiving the Mid career researcher award was Jennifer Laing for her outstanding contribution to the study of tourism, and particularly the study of Travel Narratives, the Social Dimension of Events, Rural and Regional Development and Health and Wellness Tourism. Jennifer was also awarded the Excellence in Higher Degree Research Supervision Award.

 

Dr. Jennifer Laing receiving her Mid Career Research Award

The LBS Awards, focusing on staff’s contribution to the School’s mission: “Being Responsible, Innovative & Engaged”, were presented by Professor Jane Hamilton.

The first award went to Mark Cloney, in recognition of his leadership of the National Innovation Forum and in raising the profile of the LBS.

The next LBS Award went to Nicola McNeil. While on a well-deserved holiday, she was awarded for her outstanding commitment to the School and her positive contribution the School’s culture and mission.

Dr. Mark Cloney receiving his LBS Award

Swati Nagpal received the LBS Award in recognition of her continual support of the PRME initiative, organizing a community of practice of multi-disciplinary staff to build Responsible Management in line with our mission, and in maintaining our status as an Australian ‘PRME Champion’

Dr. Swati Nagpal receiving her LBS Award

The next LBS award was for Kok-Leong Ong for his outstanding commitment to the Analytics programs and the overall student experience.

Dr. Kok-Leong Ong receiving his LBS Award

Paul Strickland won the LBS Award in recognition of his unwavering support to students during the departmental Study Tour along with his work in the development of the SIM partnership.

Paul Strickland receiving his LBS Award

Last but definitely not least, Belinda Westerlo was awarded the LBS award in recognition of her engagement, dedication and outstanding level of support provided to both staff and students in the school.

Belinda Westerlo receiving her LBS Award

Congratulations to all these outstanding staff members of the LBS!

Watch: What failure can teach you

This article was first published on Nest, a haven of new ideas for people who are all kinds of clever. Read the original article.

Being able to bounce back after failure, learn from your mistakes and forge ahead with resilience are vital skills both in and out of the workplace. According to one survey, 91 per cent of HR decision-makers predict that resilience will be key to employability in the next few years.

For Michelle Gallaher, La Trobe alumnus and 2017 Telstra Victorian Business Woman of the Year, failing is one of the most important things you can do. Watch our video to find out what Michelle learned from failing her first degree, and what failure can teach you.

Develop your resilience through La Trobe’s Career Ready Advantage program.

LBS School Manager Donna Burnett receives 2017 Award for Excellence in School and Faculty Management!

By Donna Burnett

The ATEM Best Practice Awards for 2017 was held at the Arts Centre, with over 150 staff from Tertiary institutions throughout Aus and NZ.
Recognising professional management and administration in the Tertiary Education sector is fundamentally important not only to the staff recognised, but to the industry as a whole.

Whilst ATEM has worked extremely hard for 41 years to promote a culture where professional managers work to partner academics in the education enterprise, Universities in general still have a long way to go to achieve the same goal.

This award has sought to show that we are equal partners in the profession.

I have received an incredible amount of support from the Leadership team within the LBS and support from Managers within the College. This support has enabled me to grow and flourish in my role and has treated me as an equal partner in the operations of a large and multidisciplinary school.

Working together without hierarchical boundaries has enabled effective School Management, but has also broken down many barriers and allowed professional staff to have a voice in an Academic world.

 

To see is to believe, and to believe is to see. Malcom Roberts’s recent citizenship troubles betray his double standards.

LBS Business School Lecturer in Management Dr Angela McCabe and Dr Tom Osegowitsch from the University of Melbourne have published an article in Crikey contrasting the standards of evidence demanded of scientists by populist politicians, and those they adopt for themselves.

Read the original article on Crikey, here.

“Malcolm, you are hearing the interpretation of a highly qualified scientist and you’re saying, “I don’t believe that” — is that right?” an incredulous Tony Jones asked of former One Nation Senator Malcolm Roberts during a recent Q&A episode. The senator had demanded incontrovertible proof of anthropogenic climate change from fellow panellist Professor Brian Cox, and made wild allegations about evidence having been manipulated by NASA, the Australian Bureau of Meteorology and others.

Last Friday the High court declared five current senators ineligible to sit in the Australian parliament. Among them was Malcolm Roberts, who came in for particular criticism.

The former senator’s citizenship evidence to the court was summarily rejected. He was chastised by Justice Patrick Keane for his “reliance on his highly subjective appreciation of the importance of commonplace incidents of his familial experience”.

Specifically, the ruling highlights that “there was no rational basis for the belief that he was always and only an Australian citizen. The absence of any rational basis in fact for that belief meant that Senator Roberts was driven to support his position by reliance on his highly subjective appreciation of the importance of commonplace incidents of his familial experience.” Crucially “Senator Roberts equates feelings of Australian self-identification with citizenship, and so confuses notions of how a person sees oneself with an understanding of how one’s national community sees an individual who claims to be legally entitled to be accepted as a member of that community.”

His own barrister, Robert Newlinds, said of Senator Roberts that “He’s talked himself into a different belief about that [his possible UK citizenship].

The former senator has made a name for himself challenging scientists and scientific institutions. Ostensibly he was holding them to a higher standard of evidence, although the same rigour clearly did not apply to his own, personal situation.

For years, Malcolm Roberts has been bombarding scientific institutions, individual scientists as well as journalists and parliamentarians with strong claims rejecting climate change research. He has also made severe allegations of scientific misconduct against individual scientists, which have been dismissed after due consideration.

Roberts routinely challenges climate change scientists to produce “any empirical evidence”, defined as “observations in the real world, it’s measured real world data.” When challenged by scientists such as Brian Cox insisting that there is strong empirical evidence, most prominently global warming trends, Roberts likes to maintain that the data are manipulated, by NASA and the Bureau of Meteorology, abetted by the political establishment.

Robert also criticises existing climate models, questioning their projections. These “models have already been proven to be inaccurate and the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) has recognised that and admitted it.” Yet climate change predictions have worked well, tracking overall climate trends.

At the heart of his rejection of the science establishment and its conclusions lies a vast climate change conspiracy, aided by both major parties as well as the Greens, reaching for “massive over-government” (p.132). Not confined to Australia, “The UN, on behalf of international bankers, wants to end national sovereignty and individual freedom (p.134) As a result, “People in developed nations are being enslaved to international banks.” (p.133)

The denialist traits in Robert’s thinking have previously been document. The cherry-picking of evidence, the impossible expectations raised (for instance in terms of predictive accuracy and scientific consensus), and the underlying conspiracy theories are just some of the hallmarks of denialism.

Similar to democratic politics, science can experience gridlock, detours and errors. Progress often is painstakingly slow. In recent times we have also become aware of a number of serious shortcomings in the scientific process.

In modern science, the process for establishing valid knowledge, or rather knowledge “warranting belief”, hinges on peer review and professional reputation. In recent times, the process has come in for sharp criticism on account of a number of practices undermining scholarship.

The pressure on academics to publish (“publish or perish” in the vernacular) makes them more reliant on the scientific institutions and their gatekeepers, such as journal reviewers, editors and tenure committees. These then direct researchers by effectively sanctioning the acceptable (and therefore permissable) research methods, research questions and available data.

The pressure to publish in order to secure tenure and promotion may also lead to an inflation of “Type 1 errors”. A Type I error (also known as a “false positive”) is the mistake of erroneously believing something to be true when it is not. Scientific journals tend to cherish surprising results. As a result, scientists may test more frequently for contrarian hypotheses and produce more (erroneous) chance results. As reported by Scientific American magazine a number of fields of scientific endeavour may be plagued by a significant proportion of false positives and exaggerated results.

Equally concerning, studies that fail to find novel results may not even be reported by the authors, effectively censoring the publicly reported evidence. A variety of fields such as medicine and psychology have in recent years been hit by an apparent crisis of reproducibility and experts have pointed to the elevation of a disproportionate number of false discoveries.

In the social sciences, some of these biases and problems may be even more egregious than in the natural sciences.

Overall, such institutional biases are casting a shadow over science, slowing scientific progress. But scientists are increasingly aware of these issues and gradually the scientific process is responding. Initiatives such as the appearance of ‘minimal threshold journals’ and article retractions or campaigns to report all trials and results attest to the (albeit slow) self-correcting capacity of science.

Scientific knowledge is sometimes characterised as “warranted belief”. But what exactly warrants belief? What constitutes valid knowledge? How do we believe in the authority of a particular theory, given that few of us, even scientists, are in a position to verify them independently? We do so by trusting in the institutions tasked with producing valid representations of the world around us.

In light of the inevitable shortcomings of the scientific process, the scientific community as well as the wider community need to maintain a healthy degree of scepticism about scientific findings and scientific evidence. But scepticism can sometimes degenerate into paranoid denialism. Seemingly “common sense” explanations, or conspiracies can provide a degree or comfort when complex and less-than-perfect expert opinion abound.

In the word of philosopher Brian Keeley “Social trust is fundamental in making scientific knowledge possible. Without social trust — not blind, unwarranted trust, but trust, nonetheless — […] scientific progress screech[es] to a halt.”

Like democracy, science, and the scientific process, are flawed. But they are still preferable to all the other forms of generating valid knowledge that have been tried, including Malcolm Robert’s.

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