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La Trobe Business School

Tag: Professors of Practice

“Where will the tax jobs be in 2020?”

Mark Morris La Trobe Business School Professor of Practice
By Mark Morris

It’s a vexing question for those planning a career in tax.

In my 30 plus years in the profession I have never seen it face so many challenges simultaneously.

The most obvious change is of course digital disruption.

In part this is because the automatic exchange of data is about to balloon as information is transferred in real time as computers talk to each other in a common language using standard business reporting.

But it is also because of the investment being made around the world by Governments and business to effectively leverage their use of big data to make more informed decisions. This is even extending to the development of cognitive computing systems such as IBM’s ‘Watson’ system which can be applied to analyse unstructured data to provide answers to specific questions.

As a corollary much of the traditional tax compliance and process work will gradually diminish as data is collected, exchanged and analysed differently.

However, there are an array of other impending changes including, amongst others, a more informed and savvy public; greater cross border transactions as part of a more integrated world economy; increased offshoring especially of compliance work; more complex tax laws to prop up increasingly competitive tax regimes; a growing reliance on consumption taxes worldwide to provide a more stable revenue base; and an evolving international digital economy where labour, finance, and knowhow are mobile to an unprecedented degree.

Given this mix no-one can predict with absolute certainty where the tax jobs are going to be in 2020.

Nonetheless I believe there are some clear pointers as to how you can best plan a career in tax.

Firstly, the importance of being able to analyse big data in a meaningful way is becoming rapidly crucial to both revenue authorities and professional firms of all sizes.

From the ATO’s perspective it is their growth area as witnessed by the recent creation of their Smarterdata business unit which is not only focussed on analysing data but challenging paradigms as to how the ATO conducts its operations.

Increased globalisation has also heightened the need for businesses of all sizes to be transfer pricing compliant and develop defensible positions based on finding the most comparable data.

Accordingly, tax professionals wishing to augment their tax technical skills by developing business analytics expertise could well consider enrolling in a course such as the Master of Business Analytics and Graduate Diploma in Business Analytics run by La Trobe University’s Business School as the combination of such skills will be in high demand in coming years.

Secondly, if compliance work goes down rest assured the taxation laws will not become any easier.

Whilst many talk about deregulation the tax rules have only become more complex especially for governments worldwide struggling to plug a revenue shortfall.

One only has to witness the complexity of our general anti-avoidance provisions to realise how inordinately complex our tax system has become particularly the recent amendments which will supposedly crack down on international profit shifting.

Going forward what clients will require of their advisers is the ability to work with them in disseminating such complexity and providing viable commercial solutions.

Accordingly, the way in which tax is taught at both an undergraduate and postgraduate level must radically change so that students not only absorb the complexity of the tax law but develop the interpersonal skills to service clients and build referral networks in a more global economy.

This is one of the key reasons why blended learning is being introduced by the Business School as it is encouraging students to not only develop better analytical capacities but also to work in teams to collaboratively resolve issues just like they will be required to do in the workplace.

Finally, whilst the future is daunting in some respects it is critical to remember that accountants repeatedly top the list of most trusted adviser to clients. If you are overwhelmed with change so are your clients and if you need to adapt to changing circumstances so will many of them.

Keeping your clients close will be more important than ever before as will the need to provide timely, accurate and value added services and the willingness to be adaptive and agile.

Mark Morris is a Professor of Practice in Taxation at La Trobe University’s Business School where he teaches both undergraduate and postgraduate taxation and actively contributes to broader industry engagement initiatives between the Business School and the tax profession and other key stakeholders.

Mark also Co-Chaired the ATO’s ‘Future of the Tax Profession 2016’ working group with Colin which comprises senior representatives from the ATO, professional bodies, software developers and practitioners concerning the implementation of the ATO’s standard business reporting initiative.

He has over 30 years experience in senior tax roles in chartered accounting, industry and professional bodies including his former long-term role as Senior Tax Counsel with CPA Australia.

 

Our industry connections make you career ready

What you do at university is important to us.

However, it’s what you do after university that interests us the most. We know that studying is a significant investment, so we’re committed to making sure you graduate ready for work.

With the employment landscape evolving constantly, the best way to make sure we’re teaching the right skills is to go straight to the source. That’s why we work closely with industry to find out what they want in graduates – both right now and in the future.

Developing the degrees industry needs

We’re constantly reinvigorating our courses to prepare you for roles in emerging fields of employment. We work directly with industry to identify skill gaps and develop degrees to address them.

For example, our industry partner Cisco has identified that there are currently a million cybersecurity jobs opening globally, with demand projected to rise in the coming years.

In response to this demand, we’ve developed our new suite of cybersecurity degrees with input from Cisco, Optus, Australia Post, Australian Signals Directorate (ASD), Cisco, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Symantec, Atlassian and Cloudera.

Simone Bachmann, Head of Information, Security, Innovation and Culture and Australia Post, says, ‘we need people with problem solving skills, we need innovators, we need people with legal and regulatory skills, we need communicators and educators to help people understand the problem.’ These degrees address the growing need for cybersecurity professionals with interdisciplinary skills.

Our Master of Sport Analytics (developed with leading sports clubs and technology companies), Master of Business Analytics (with 20 per cent of the curriculum taught by industry experts) and Master of Data Science (addressing a data analytics skills shortage) are other examples of our industry relationships preparing students for the future of work.

Future-facing industry partnerships

We’ve established relationships with major organisations to make sure we stay at the forefront of industry developments.

Our partnership with Optus, which focuses on cybersecurity, will result in scholarships and Work Integrated Learning (WIL) opportunities for our students, as well as employment pathways for graduates.

We work closely with a number of sporting clubs, including Melbourne City Football Club, Carlton Football Club, AFL Player’s Association, Bendigo Spirit and IPL Kings XI Punjab to give our students access to work placements as well as research and internship opportunities.

We’re also the only university to offer an accredited art subject at the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV). As learning partner for the NGV’s summer exhibition, we’ve offered the subject Summer at the NGV for the past four years – in 2017, students were able to study the work of British icon David Hockney.

Preparing you for success with industry insights

Technology is advancing at an incredible rate, which means that many of today’s roles won’t even exist in the future.

It’s our job to prepare you for the roles of the future. We do this by helping you develop the flexibility and transferable skills you need to adapt to the changing market.

We’ve spoken to a number of employers, including PwC, Commonwealth Bank, Alfred Health, Thoughtworks, Pfizer, CSIRO, Melbourne Football Club, Telstra, Bureau of Meteorology, Deloitte, Certified Practicing Accountants and more to identify the core skills and attributes that employers value most highly.

We’ve used these insights to develop Career Ready, a program that supports you to build the attributes employers want. The program includes an app, a dedicated support team, an on-campus recruitment agency, and a range of activities you can participate in to build your skills.

First-hand industry experience

We’re also making sure our students come into contact with industry while they’re still studying.

With our Professors of Practice program, we’re championing a shift in how industry can contribute to education. Our Professors of Practice are industry professionals employed by the university to advise on curriculum, and, in some cases, teach.

Mark Morris, a Professor of Practice in the Department of Accounting, says, ‘I try to provide insights as to what they will find in the workplace wherever I can, because this is exactly the kind of knowledge that can give them an edge to stand out from the crowd.’

Work Integrated Learning (WIL) opportunities place students in organisations, giving them the opportunity to apply their theoretical knowledge in a real industry environment. After graduation, many of our students are employed by their WIL employer.

This post was originally published on the NEST blog.

Cleaning up sport: conflicts of interest at the top | Space for Transparency

 

By Catherine Ordway

The tension between the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) has never been greater than this year, when WADA recommended a ban on all Russian athletes from participating in the Rio Olympic Games, only to have the IOC reject that position. This points to a fundamental challenge for the relationship between the two organisations. As WADA is half run and funded by the IOC, its independence can be questioned.

In a vote to maintain the status quo, 75 year-old Sir Craig Reedie, an IOC member since 1994, was re-elected on 20 November as WADA President for a further three year term. Many of WADA’s decision-makers appear not to see a conflict in their dual/multiple roles. As IOC member and former WADA President, Dick Pound put it: “Tell me what the conflict of interest is between your capacity as an IOC member espousing clean, doping-free sport and sitting as representative of that organisation on [the] foundation board of WADA, which has the same objective.”

The fact that both WADA and the IOC have as a common goal the desire to achieve ‘drug free’ sport, does not negate the inherent conflict that arises in the space where the aims differ.

Despite creating WADA with inbuilt conflicts, the IOC now realises that WADA needs to change. The Declaration of the 5th Olympic Summit of 8 October recognised the fundamental philosophical tension within international sport on WADA’s role. Recommendation 3 emphasises that: “WADA [is] to strengthen its governance structure” and “[must] Ensure compliance with the highest ethical standards in particular with regard to the resolution of conflicts of interests and integrity.”

The Declaration went on to indicate that WADA should both be better resourced to operate independently and have greater powers. Hopefully this is also an indication that the IOC may now be willing to relinquish control and allow for greater independence.

Organisational objective conflicts

The IOC owns the Olympic Games and receives much of its revenue from the broadcasting and sponsorship of these events. It’s in the IOC’s interest to have the best athletes from all member nations there to keep the Games relevant and competitive. The proposal to ban Russia created a difficult dilemma for the IOC.

The challenge created when common interests raise a potential conflict is also demonstrated in WADA’s appointment of Dick Pound as the lead investigator in the first “independent” report into international athletics (IAAF) and Russia’s state sponsored doping. For the report to be ‘independent’, Pound’s current and former positions should have made him ineligible for this role.

In the most recent demonstration of the challenge posed, IOC members Gian-Franco Kasper and Dr. Ugur Erdender currently sit on both the committees that considered whether the athletes nominated by the Russian Olympic Committee should be barred from competing at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, namely the IOC and WADA Executive Boards.

The IOC’s decision not to accept WADA’s recommendation on Russia’s eligibility sends the message that Olympic goals, including supporting one of the IOC’s strongest members, are prioritised over the aims of WADA. At the meeting of the broader IOC membership, only the former British skeleton athlete, and WADA Foundation member, Adam Pengilly, voted to support WADA’s recommendation, while Reedie abstained.

Composition of WADA’s Decision-Making Bodies

WADA’s mission is to: “promote and coordinate at [the] international level the fight against doping in sport in all its forms”.  To strengthen WADA’s governance and remove the conflicts between the different stakeholders, as recommended by the IOC, requires rewriting WADA’s constitutional documents to allow for the appointment of independent decision-makers.

As it stands now, WADA’s constitution provides for a two-tiered decision making system: the large Foundation Board made up of representatives from both governments and the Olympic movement, and a sub-set of that group sits as the Executive Committee. Most of the policy-makers sitting on WADA’s Executive Committee are also on its decision-making body, the Foundation Board. In order for the Foundation Board to truly play an oversight role, there should not be an overlap of personnel.

To have any claim to ‘independence’, WADA must also sever the tie between receipt of funding, and eligibility for a seat at the WADA board table.

As detailed elsewhere, this bind creates a number of issues for WADA, including: the danger of WADA being manipulated or held hostage by the dominant funder (see reference 1 below) and wasting resources on solving the struggles and disagreements between stakeholders with competing agendas (see reference 2 below).

The separation will help to diminish, but not completely avoid, the issues around funding bodies influencing the way WADA operates. How ‘independence’ is defined and achieved is a challenge that needs to be worked through in consultation with all the major stakeholders. Athletes have the ultimate vested interest in ensuring that sport is played fairly, and that ‘innocent’ athletes are supported and protected (see reference 3 below).

The current financial and rights model must be turned on its head to give athletes the ultimate say on how sport is governed and policed. Inverting the power pyramid will open up dialogue around ensuring greater justice and economic benefits for athletes. A more representative WADA would see a broad, inclusive group of skilled people reflecting the demographics of the community, including athlete alliancesanti-doping specialists, scientists, professional team sport employers and sponsors.

Opening up the nomination process would also provide the opportunity for other organisations with an interest in supporting ‘clean’ sport, such as the UN Office for Drugs and Crime and the Global Organization of Parliamentarians Against Corruption, to increase their involvement.  There is also capacity to expand UNESCO’s role in monitoring the implementation of the anti-doping convention.

An independent Foundation Board and Executive Committee will “strengthen [WADA’s] governance structure” by creating an additional internal accountability mechanism.  The challenge will be to then develop a fair, inclusive process so the views of athletes can be more comprehensively reflected, replacing the current Athlete Commission model.

The IOC’s plea for the “resolution of conflicts of interests and integrity” can be answered by ensuring that WADA’s decision-making bodies are composed of a diverse range of independent thinkers who are answerable to the athletes, not representative stakeholders.  Managed carefully, having experts from a range of disciplines available to set WADA’s strategic direction will ensure that anti-doping serves those most impacted by it.

References

1. For more on capture, see P. Sabatier, ‘Social Movements and Regulatory Agencies: Toward a More Adequate – and Less Pessimistic – Theory of “Clientele Capture”’ (1975) 6 Policy Sciences 301; M. E. Levine and J. L. Forrence, ‘Regulatory Capture, Public Interest, and the Public Agenda: Toward a Synthesis’ (1990) 6 Journal of Law, Economics & Organization 167.

2. U. Wagner, ‘The World Anti-Doping Agency: Constructing a Hybrid Organisation in Permanent Stress (Dis)Order?’ (2009) 1 International Journal of Sport Policy and Politics 183, 196.

3. S. Moston and T. Engelberg, “Guilty Until Proven Innocent (and Then Still Guilty)” Report, James Cook University, 15 November 2016

This post was originally published on the Transparency International Blog.

Get to know your professor: Professor of Practice Michael Wildenauer


We sat down with the Professor of Practice Michael Wildenauer, and asked him what he enjoys most about teaching, what kind of professional experience he has, and how he likes to relax.

Current Role

My current role in the La Trobe Business School is Professor of Practice in the Management and Marketing Department. I teach into masters level courses (MMgmt and MBA) in corporate entrepreneurship, innovation, professional ethics in ICT, and corporate governance, which is a pretty mixed bag really!

After I finished my MBA, I started doctoral studies in business which is when I started to become interested teaching at tertiary level. I did some sessional teaching online and face to face for a couple of universities in areas where I had many years of professional experience before I started at La Trobe. My MBA studies and doctoral research moved me away from ICT towards the dark side (Management Theory and Behavioural Corporate Governance) somewhat.

What subject matter do you most enjoy teaching?

I really enjoy teaching professional ethics in ICT course, which includes lots of content about the societal and legal, as well as ethical, impact of technology in both professional and everyday life. Teaching innovation by getting the class to design thinking activities is also great fun, and its fulfilling to see students come up with interesting ideas to solve tricky problems.

What do you value most about La Trobe University?

I think that access for underserved communities from a very wide range of backgrounds in Melbourne’s north and especially in regional Victoria is really valuable.

Outside of the University, what is your professional experience?

I have had 30+ years of professional experience before coming to teach at La Trobe. I started out in technology roles (first as a programmer, then as a Unix systems administrator and database admin), then moved to supervisory and then management roles in ICT. I was lucky enough to work for some really interesting organizations, especially during my seven years working in Silicon Valley, but also in Australia, the UK and the Netherlands. During this time I also had some stints consulting and then as a senior executive level manager. Immediately prior to LBS, I was a consultant working for myself, which continues today. I am also a non-executive director of a small rural health service in Central Victoria.

What’s one piece of advice you can share for students to get the most out of their uni experience?

Take advantage of all of everything offered! There is guidance on how to write assignments, how to reference etc. etc. Use it. The Library offers a lot. Get involved with things that interest you – students groups and activities, the Big Idea competition, that sort of thing. If you finish university and have only gone to classes and nothing else, you’ve let some great opportunities go by…

How do you like to relax?

Relax? What’s that? I do like to spend time at a local café where I live in the Macedon Ranges, working or (more often) chatting with the regulars which seem to include quite a few authors among their number, which makes for interesting conversations. OK, actually mostly complaining about the weather and tourists…

 

La Trobe Business School’s 2016 UN PRME Report released

PRME La Trobe Business School

The United Nations’ PRME secretariat has recently released the third sharing of progress (SIP) report submitted by La Trobe Business School. In the document, LBS details the achievements that illustrate its ongoing commitment to each of the six  Principles for Responsible Management Education (PRME), developed further since the last report was submitted in 2014. This work makes a significant contribution to the ways in which LBS fulfils its mission.

The report can be viewed here.

What does PRME stand for?

The six PRME principles provide a framework for business schools as they seek to develop competent and responsible managers through education. The program was conceived by way of a recommendation of the academic stakeholders from the United Nations Global Compact. The six principles were developed and adopted in 2007 by an international task force of sixty deans, university presidents and official representatives of leading business schools and academic institutions.

The PRME philosophy sits alongside the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), formally adopted in Paris in 2015, as part of the universal, integrated and transformative 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The 17 SDGs balance the three dimensions of sustainable development: the economic, social and environmental. The Goals and targets provide a framework to stimulate action over the next 14 years in areas of critical importance for the long-term sustainability of human society and the planet, build on the Millennium Development Goals (MGDs) and complete what the MDGs were unable to achieve.

LBS’s commitment to the UN PRME

Since joining UN PRME in 2007, La Trobe Business School has been actively engaged in embedding responsible management, not just in its curriculum and research activities, but also at an institutional level. The School has laid the foundations for the next phase to expand its activities through dialogue (the sixth principle). This success to date means that LBS can more effectively engage in dialogue with stakeholders, and share its understandings more broadly.

La Trobe University values its Business School’s capacity and the opportunity to engage with the demands of responsible management education. LBS and the University have a longstanding commitment and philosophy to foster new generations of responsible professionals. La Trobe Business School aims to educate and encourage students to carry responsible management into their workplace along with a thorough understanding of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

LBS also continues to take the requisite steps to ensure that undergraduate and postgraduate courses, research programs and activities, strategic frameworks and its overall philosophy provide enabling environments for meeting the principles and the accompanying demands of educating about responsible leadership. This includes teaching current perspectives in corporate social responsibility, corporate governance, business ethics, gender balance, diversity, sustainability accounting, and environmental and resource economics across many of the LBS courses and subjects. In addition, the assessment modules are consistently reviewed and designed to emphasise these values to students and provide them with practical applications of responsible management.

New initiatives taken by LBS

Since 2014, many exciting new developments have taken place within La Trobe Business School that further contribute to its work around responsible management. The creation of the Yunus Social Business Centre, the SAS Analytics Innovation lab and the appointment of 11 Professors of Practice to the Business School stand as flagship achievements between 2014 and 2016.

The Sustainability Thinking, Global Citizenship, and Innovation and Entrepreneurship Learning Essentials of LTU provide an excellent platform to further support, grow and direct LBS students to recognize the global contexts in which they will work, exchange values and perspectives, act across cultures and borders and to work with, and within, diverse communities.

Since mid-2015, more than 2000 undergraduate students have completed La Trobe Business School’s second year Sustainability subject, one of three Learning Essentials for the School and the University. Within the MBA Program, LBS offers core subjects that engage with PRME. The University is also leading in the creation of innovative learning and research environments for students through the Hallmark Program and industry outreach including partnerships with local government, and in the community. The University also provides greater access to tertiary education through scholarship programs and the early entry Aspire program.

A number of LBS academics from a wide range of disciplines continue to undertake research projects that are closely aligned with the PRME principles.  These include projects related to sport and social impact, the role of technology in supporting the wellbeing and sustainability of human society, climate change impacts on business, accounting and human rights, rural tourism and sustainability, and data analytics for improved healthcare outcomes.

LBS will continue to use this research platform to create new, and build on existing, engagement opportunities with external stakeholders and partners such as sporting organisations, government agencies and departments, accreditation bodies, NGO’s, private sector organisations and consultancies.

Finally, La Trobe Business School is proud to be nominated as one of 30 leading institutions from around the world to participate in the pilot phase of the PRME Champions Group.

What does it mean to be part of the LBS incubator team for My Big Idea?

anne-brouwer

By Anne Brouwer

In September I was asked by the La Trobe Business School to be part of the incubator team of My Big Idea Australia. It’s a project organised by the Australia Futures Project to encourage Australians to submit ideas for a better Australia on a range of areas such as: concern for future generations, effective healthcare, caring for the elderly and economic growth. Ultimately over 1200 ideas were submitted and 10 winners were announced. Our team went to Sydney for a two-day workshop on how to further develop two of the ten winning ideas but also to learn how to lead such a workshop ourselves. Those Australians that submitted ideas but didn’t win were given the opportunity to take part in a full day workshop on further developing their ideas. Therefore, on the 8th of October 2016, La Trobe Business School hosted a successful start-up bootcamp, called Minihack, delivering on its My Big Idea promise to train 500 Australians to be positive change makers. All Australians in Victoria involved in My Big Idea were invited.

A small but very motivated number of Victorians worked a full day on their ideas. Everybody brought their own ideas to the table ranging from tackling the obesity epidemic, setting up a system that provides legal advice for indigenous people in incarceration to an app for reducing meat-intake for a more sustainable world. It was incredible to get to know all these ideas, to hear about how the participants came up with the ideas and also to see the various stages the ideas were in. One participant’s’ idea was already picked up by the local media, another one already developed an app and some were upscaling themselves in specific skills as to better execute their idea.

The day was coordinated by La Trobe Business School’s Professor of Entrepreneurship, Dr Alex Maritz, who gave the welcoming presentation to participants in the morning. He spoke about ways for participants to refine, pitch and build on their idea and encouraged participants to share their idea with others in the room. The approach is learning by doing. The workshop participants were divided in small groups and received mentoring, support and advice from myself and several other La Trobe Business School staff members, including academics and PhD candidates. LBS Staff included academics Associate Professor Vanessa Ratten and Professor of Practice Antony Jacobson, and PhD candidates Claudia Shwetzer and Ana Amirsardari.

I sat together with three lovely women, all three having very different ideas: using big data to tailor health care services better, a platform to bring home cooks and people who do not like to cook, can’t cook or those looking for some social interaction over dinner together, and setting up mental health healing centres where the use of a mindfulness program reduces and prevents long-term mental health problems.  I was impressed with how the ideas developed throughout the day and how well everybody got along. There was a great vibe in the room the whole day.

The feedback at the end of the workshop was incredibly positive. Contact details were exchanged and a My Big Idea Minihack Facebook Page had emerged.

For me, being the only team member with no entrepreneurial background, working with the LBS’s incubator team existing of highly successful academics and professionals, was a great experience. It was also great getting to know all these amazing people and their ideas. All in all, both the workshop in Sydney as well as the mini-hack at La Trobe University were great events bringing together lots of creative minds developing innovative ideas to make Australia even better!

Anne Brouwer is currently a PhD candidate at La Trobe Business School.

Professors of Practice Profiles – Janet Russell: “The mix of experience in our Professor of Practice team is outstanding and complementary to the LBS faculty, in total providing an invaluable resource to our students.”

Janet Russell

When La Trobe Business School introduced the Professors of Practice concept early last year, Janet Russell was one of the first Professors of Practice to be appointed.

As one of the first Business Schools in Australia to pioneer this concept, LBS intends that Professors of Practice will provide students with invaluable insights into the industry, while also  strengthening links between LBS and industry.

With experience spanning from being a CEO and Managing Director to running her own executive coaching service for successful entrepreneurs, tech specialists, lawyers and accountants, Janet Russell has an impressive breadth of experience to bring to La Trobe Business School. ”As an executive coach, I aim to help clients identify the thoughts and behaviours that can hold them back in their careers or leadership roles so they can grow conscious of these and develop new ways of thinking and behaving that serve them and their organisations much better,” she says. “The key in my work as an executive coach is to ask the right questions to unlock what the real or underlying issue is for an individual. For example, I’ll often deal with clients who have been promoted on the basis of research they conducted, but they feel unequipped for their new position because they are insecure about their managerial or people skills. By asking the right questions, you can support an individual to deal with the often irrational fears that hold them back from realising their own potential.”

Currently, Janet Russell teaches on La Trobe Business School’s MBA programme, where she delivers subjects on Responsible Leadership, HR and Management. “I really enjoy teaching especially as my professional experience and knowledge are well aligned with La Trobe Business School’s values and goals, like creating work-ready graduates and fostering global citizens.” Janet says. “I was also very pleased to see that our Business School was named one of the only PRME champions in Australia recently. A strong focus on sustainability and developing responsible leaders is crucial for organisations globally.”

In November last year, Janet travelled to Hanoi, Vietnam, where she taught an intensive course on responsible leadership to twenty MBA students. “It was a wonderful experience to compare and contrast the learning environment of our Hanoi based students with our Australian based students.

When asked what she thinks a Professor of Practice should bring to a course, Janet Russell is clear: “Relevant experience and practical application of how what’s studied in a business subject translates into the real world of work and organisational environments, which I think all Professors of Practice have in abundance. The mix of experience in our Professor of Practice team is outstanding and complementary to the LBS faculty, in total providing an invaluable resource to our students.”

LBS Professor of Practice Profiles – Susan Inglis: “I’m passionate about helping others to more effectively lead and manage people.”

Susan Inglis Professors of Practice

Since early 2015, La Trobe has introduced a team of Professors of Practice. As one of the first Business Schools in Australia to pioneer this concept, LBS is hoping that it will provide their students with the insight into the industry they need, and form a bridge between connections in the industry and LTU Business Students.

Susan Inglis started as a Professor of Practice last June, but has been teaching at La Trobe University since 2013. Coming from a HR consulting background, Susan has worked for small business, government agencies, and the non-profit sector.

“I really enjoy having colleagues to collaborate with,” she says. “Before I started in this role, I worked mostly on my own on specific projects. Here we have the opportunity to collectively work together as a team to improve both student outcomes and relationships with industry.”

At La Trobe Business School, Susan currently teaches in the MBA programme, focussing on leadership and management. She has also taught these MBA courses in Hanoi, Vietnam.

“I’m passionate about helping others to more effectively lead and manage people.” Susan Inglis says. “This includes bringing out the best in individual capabilities and also teaching students how to maximise group cooperation. In my twenty years of consulting experience and in my doctoral research, I’ve recognised the criticality of explicit collaboration processes in the workforce. It’s incredibly valuable if managers understand individual motivators and strengths to bring out people’s best capabilities.”

In her teaching, Susan Inglis makes an effort to provide students with real-life experience so they can apply theory to their current professional careers: “In teaching conflict-management, for example, students are asked to look at a conflict present in their own work life, and apply a conflict-resolution strategies to themselves directly.” The results are often enlightening: “A lot of my students reach a true “aha” moment through this authentic assessment. Undoubtedly because it impacts them so intensely and directly.”

In her eyes, providing Business School students with this type of experience is exactly what a Professor of Practice should do: “Not only should we provide students with the ability to be self-aware, we should also equip them with the tools they need to be responsible leaders in the work-force, recognising the important influencing role they can play beyond their work roles.”

“This is where Professors of Practice are incredibly valuable,” she adds. “These people are highly experienced and can provide an invaluable real-life perspective to complement the theories being taught. They have worked as managers, led teams, and displayed a degree of entrepreneurship that can be enormously helpful and inspirational to students.”

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