KI Sport – Netball – Skilled Saints test Parndana newbies

KI Sport – Netball. Photos by Maggie’s Photography KI Sport – Netball. Photos by Maggie’s Photography
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KI Sport – Netball. Photos by Maggie’s Photography

KI Sport – Netball. Photos by Maggie’s Photography

KI Sport – Netball. Photos by Maggie’s Photography

KI Sport – Netball. Photos by Maggie’s Photography

15&U

Parndana vWestern Districts

Netball second round played at Parndana between the Roosters verses Western Districts saw a raw Parndana unit with many first and second year players match up against an experienced Wonks contingent.

Westies found the goals quite freely through Tayla and Lauren. Bailey at goalshooter had improved greatly from the previous week but the skill and agility of Emma Watters was certainly a concern for Parndana. Rhana Berlin was first to the ball and continually running off Rediet Ellis and Georgie Horjus at GA added some punch to the Roosters forward line. Jorelie Letton and Rene Neeson worked tirelessly but needed to focus on their passes which often missed their mark coming out of defence. Taj Rongo went into centre and Rhana into GA with Wonks making several positional changes as well.

Though the goals were stacking in Western Districts favour, the Roosters never gave up with Rene at GK taking some lovely rebounds and building up her confidence.

The game was won convincingly by Wonks with best players to Emma Watters (WD) and Rhana Berlin (P).

13&U

Western Districts 40 d Parndana 30

Very fierce competition between school mates.

WD got off to a great start and capitalised on Parndana’s errors. WD up by six at quarter time.

Western Districts maintained the incentive during the second quarter with accurate goal shooting. Parndana continued to fight hard and had lots of turnovers during the game but the accuracy of the WD goalies enabled them to maintain the lead.

11&Under

Kingscote Black 8 d Kingscote Red 3

The two Kingscote teams battling it out for the first time for the season.

Very evenly matched, good ball skills being shown by all girls.

As the final score shows, it was a very low-scoring game with few centre passes, with Kingscote Black proving too good on the scorecard at the end of the match. All girls showing their fight for the ball.

11&U

Parndana 27 d Western Districts 5

A well-fought match through four quarters, but in the end a more experienced Parndana team dominated.

In the first half, good defence by Willow Maunsell and Janine Wandell for WD could not keep Parndana’s Rumer Wendt and Jasmin Berlin down. Olivia Downing (WD) and Abby Morris (WD) playing well together in goals.

Jemma Bald (WD) was versatile around the court throughout Parndana’s defence team of Amy Ewers and Tarryn Putland kept WD scoring to a minimum. Ashlee Edwards (P) a standout shooter in fourth quarter.

Netta

Kingscote v Wisanger

It was a windy day for the Kingscote and Wisanger Netta teams on Saturday morning.

All were bubbling with excitement. The game was filled with enthusiasm for all four quarters of netball.

Wisanger proved stronger on the day.

Congratulations must go to Kingscote for a strong defence which kept Wisanger’s attacking players on their toes.

Thanks to all the families for supporting the girls.

Parndana v WesternDistricts

Cool and windy but sunny morning greeting the young netta girls at Parndana.

Lovely intercepts by Bonnie and Iiesha for Parndana, while Molly, Evie and Willow were leading well for WD.

In the second quarter, Jimmi and Willow both shot lovely goals for WD while Tahnee and Abby defended well for Parndana with their arms up. Shaylee (P) and Sophie (WD) both first year players standing each other and trying hard. Amahli (WD) and Tarsha(P) both chasing the loose balls. Scarlett and Ebony putting lots of shots up in goals for Parndana. Grace (WD) following her player well and Tilly and Raemi lead strongly for WD.

Great game by all girls.

KI Sport – Netball. Photos by Maggie’s Photography

KI Sport – Netball. Photos by Maggie’s Photography

KI Sport – Netball. Photos by Maggie’s Photography

KI Sport – Netball. Photos by Maggie’s Photography

Prints of KI Sports photos can be ordered online at Photo Sales.

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Super charter group revealed

Bill Shorten has revealed the members of a group hand-picked to write a charter for a new independent umpire for Australia’s $1.5 trillion super sector.
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The charter group includes the deputy chairman of the prudential regulator, the former head of National Australia Bank’s wealth arm, and the author of a review into the superannuation system.

The five-strong group announced today will create a Charter of Superannuation Adequacy and Sustainability, which will guide the new Reserve Bank-style council set up to evaluate the merits of proposed changes to super.

Australian Prudential Regulation Authority deputy chairman Ross Jones, the recently departed head of MLC Steve Tucker, and Jeremy Cooper, the author of the Cooper review into super and now chairman of retirement income at financial services firm Challenger, will form part of a Charter Group.

The final members are Elana Rubin, recently a chair of industry fund giant AustralianSuper, and Alan H Goldberg QC, Superannuation and Financial Services Minister Bill Shorten said.

Last month the government announced a new Council of Superannuation Custodians. This council was being set up to be an impartial body that monitors the policy and principles of Australia’s superannuation system. Its members were yet to be chosen.

But Shadow Minister for Financial Services and Superannuation Mathias Cormann derided the announcement, saying “to protect people’s superannuation savings, we don’t need more bureaucracy, we need a change of government.”

“We already have a Council of Custodians – they are the Australian people, who will pass judgment on this government at the next election.”

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‘A nation’s prosperity built on its mothers’

SO WHAT is your family doing for Mother’s Day?
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Every family I know has their own traditions and their own idea of what constitutes an appropriate celebration.

To mark Mother’s Day, Save the Children has produced the State of the World’s Mothers report, which takes a look at how comparatively tough it is to be a mother across the globe.

According to Save the Children, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is the toughest place in the world to be a mother, while Finland the best.

Indeed, the Nordic countries sweep the top spots while, for the first time, countries in sub-Saharan Africa take up each of the bottom 10 places in the annual list.

The Mothers’ Index, in the State of the World’s Mothers report, is a unique ranking of 176 countries around the globe, showing those that are succeeding – and those failing – in their support to mothers.

It assesses mothers’ well-being using indicators of maternal health, child mortality, education and levels of women’s income and political status.

According to Save the Children, the startling disparities between mothers in the developed and developing world are summed up around maternal risk.

A woman or girl in DRC has a one in 30 chance of dying from maternal causes – including childbirth – but in Finland the risk is one in 12,200.

In the DRC, which performs poorly across all indicators, girls are likely to be educated for eight-and-a-half years compared to Finland at the top, where girls can expect to receive some 16 years of education.

Save the Children International’s chief executive, Jasmine Whitbread, has commented: “By investing in mothers and children, nations are investing in their future prosperity.

“If women are educated, are represented politically, and have access to good quality maternal and child care, then they and their children are much more likely to survive and thrive – and so are the societies they live in.

“Huge progress has been made across the developing world, but much more can be done to save and improve millions of the poorest mothers’ and newborns’ lives.”

On the Mothers’ Index, Australia came in a very respectable 10th behind Finland, Sweden, Norway, Iceland, The Netherlands, Denmark, Spain Belgium and Germany.

Canada was ranked at number 22 and the UK at 23, while the US placed 30th.

We don’t hear the tag “Lucky Country” bandied about much any more when people are talking about Australia, but I think this report shows we might be able to apply it, at the very least, when it comes to maternity care.

Anyway, whatever your plans are for Sunday, I hope you have a very happy Mother’s Day.

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Mastermind a winning start-up strategy

Building a successful business is like mastering a game of chess. As an entrepreneur, you not only need a strategy to win, your moves need to be timed perfectly to make the most of opportunities. Like chess, you need vision, persistence and the skill to coordinate all the players in your team to work together towards your goal.
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That’s what serial entrepreneur Nick Cloete has done all his life. Apart from a one-year stint training to be a chef when he was 18, Cloete has always run his own businesses.

Masterminding a winning strategyCloete, now 30, is currently founder and CEO of Kounta, a point-of-sale software platform for the retail industry. The cloud-based platform is aimed at small to medium sized businesses and costs $50 per month per “cash register”. It is designed so that it can work with any device (such as iPhones or tablets) or be integrated with existing point-of-sale hardware.

It is being used with businesses such as Sonoma Baking Company, George Gregan Espresso and Gelato Messina.

It’s been a long road for Cloete who, after his short-lived career as a chef, became a co-owner of a printing company for four years.

“I was then asked to invest in a company that distributed an international legacy point of sale software product and quickly realised that even though this software had been developed over the past 20 years it couldn’t cater to the requirements of today’s online, mobile and connected world,” says Cloete, who was involved with the company for three years. “So I assembled a mastermind group of people to research and develop the best way to better connect merchants and their customers in store at point of sale.”

Making the right movesThe result is Kounta, which launched 18 months ago with four staff. Cloete and his team spent six months developing the software, and a year working in beta with a group of about 50 businesses. Together, they trialled the software to find improvements that could be made and iron out the bugs.

On 1 January 2013 Kounta became available throughout Australia and is currently used by 500 businesses. Cloete hopes to reach 5000 by the end of the year.

Now with 10 staff, Cloete uses in-house developers to create his software. He admits that he does not have a technical background. “I don’t have much technical skill,” he says. “I suppose my skill is in recognising real life problems and putting together products that are going to solve those real life problems. I enjoy putting the team together.”

It’s a bold strategy in a start-up environment where many founders are expected to understand at least the basics of coding. However, Cloete is nonplussed. He says he’s a natural problem solver. “The first thing is to get the right guys on board who share the vision and can carry through that vision and make it a reality,” he says.

Keeping your pieces in the gameWhen it comes to figuring out whether you have the right people on board, Cloete says: “You just know.”

Beyond this intuitive approach, Cloete puts faith in the recruitment company who finds his developers. “I believe we have the best recruiters who work with us. And then there are also the developers who show interest in joining us and contact us themselves. That’s a great start. Usually, they’ve already been involved in projects of this scale. They’ve had to build something from scratch. We started with zero lines of code and they’ve been part of the founding team. They can then educate any newcomers with the idea and the reasons behind the way they’ve constructed their code.”

In order to retain this talent, Cloete, says: “We like to pay them what they want to get paid. And then obviously there’s various incentives for different types of roles.” This include bonus payments for reaching certain milestones on time.

Playing a bigger gameTo achieve his overall vision Cloete not only has to motivate and empower his staff, he is strategic about finding the right investors and customers.

At the start of the year, he decided he wanted to play a bigger game. “We want to launch internationally now,” says Cloete, who is now taking Kounta into its first round of funding. It is also working with beta customers in the US and UK.

“We have one investor so far: Greg Wilkinson, founder and chairman of Reckon,” says Cloete. Reckon is the accounting software previously known as Quickbooks and Quicken. “We’re looking for investors who are not only able to help us financially but also strategically through next stage of growth and development. The reason we don’t have any other investors yet is we’ve been selective about who we want to get on board.”

A single-minded visionWork-life balance is a foreign concept to Cloete who says that the life of a start-up founder is all-consuming. “The only time I’m not working is when I’m sleeping – and I don’t sleep that much,” says Cloete, who routinely wakes at 5.30am and goes to bed around midnight. “I’m always thinking of ways that we can improve Kounta.”

When it comes to the best business advice he’s been given, Cloete says:

1. Andrew Cannole, owner of Sonoma Baking Company once said to me: “Don’t knock on the door, kick it down.”

2. Albert Einstein said: “Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex … It takes a touch of genius and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction.” In technology, it’s very easy to make things complicated. I think it’s important to pay attention to ease of use.

3. Napoleon Hill said: “The Master Mind is as a mind that is developed through the harmonious cooperation of two or more people who ally themselves for the purpose of accomplishing any given task.” I would say this piece is the best advice I’ve got so far and most important to me.

Cloete says that in three years’ time he wants “as many merchants around the world as possible” to be using Kounta. With strategic partnerships already in place with Paypal and Beat The Q, and more rolling out with online shopping platforms and social networks, Cloete is confident he has the right pieces in play. Only time will tell whether he ultimately wins the game.

Follow Valerie Khoo on Twitter @valeriekhoo

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Saving “generation jobless”: is it too late?

Unemployed, idle and over-educated: is this what our kids have come to? Photo: AFRA group of journalism students took my undergraduate university course on entrepreneurship and innovation. They were bright, creative, fun to teach and strong communicators. What a pity most will never work in a newsroom, such is the pressure on media companies to cut costs.
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How many other university disciplines educate far more students than needed? How many marketing students are needed as technology drastically cuts marketing costs? How many graduate accountants, lawyers or technology students will be needed as firms outsource work offshore?

How many PhD students will find work as full-time academics as the Federal government cuts university funding and if massive open online courses reshape higher education?

Will there be a point where the supply of university graduates exceeds demand by so much that students no longer see sufficient value in spending three of four years at university, racking up tens of thousands of dollars in student debt, and finding their degrees count for less upon graduation?

And what will happen to a potential glut of university graduates in certain industries?

I thought about this issue while reading The Economist’s excellent report on global youth unemployment, or “generation jobless”. It reported OECD figures showing more young people are idle than ever and that the number without a job has risen by 30 per cent since 2007.

Thankfully, Australia’s labour market is stronger than most. But even here the number of teenage males (aged 15 to 19) looking for full-time work was 23.9 per cent in March 2013, up from 21.8 per cent a year earlier, latest Australian Bureau of Statistic labour force data shows. It was 29.8 per cent for females.

The graduate recruitment market has also deteroriated slightly. Earlier this year, Graduate Careers Australia reported 12.5 per cent of employers it surveyed recruited no graduates in 2012, up from 10 per cent a year earlier. About one in four students with bachelor degrees available for full-time employment had not found work within four months of graduation.

The good news: less than 3 per cent of university graduates overall were unemployed, although it is not clear whether their employment was commensurate with years of education and hefty tuition costs. How many young people spend $30,000 on a degree and end up in jobs that do not require one, or are forced to work part-time?

The big concern is a deteriorating teenage unemployment market, which arguably deserves more media attention, and a soft graduate recruitment market, while annual economic growth is a respectable 3.1 per cent, inflation, and interest rates and overall unemployment are low.

Heaven help our teenage and graduate recruitment markets if economic growth deteriorates, companies more aggressively cut costs, or new technologies lead to some graduate jobs disappearing. It would be an economic and social catastrophe to have so many young people sit idle.

One can’t blame universities alone for the soft graduate market, as companies cut costs. Surely, if there is a strong demand for university courses such as journalism, universities should supply that education. Nobody forces students to take university courses for fields that have uncertain long-term job prospects.

Two bigger issues are at play. First, we have conditioned students to believe a full-time university degree is the best pathway to career success. Media professionals with longer memories will recall some of the industry’s best were cadets with no formal university training. Many started doing basic admin, learned on the job, worked their way up, and became great editors.

I like how trades combine on-the-job and formal training. For example, a family member has an apprenticeship at a mining company and studies part-time. He loves it. Full-time work straight after school provides on-the-job-training and income, and formal part-time study complements that knowledge. He is in the workforce, rather than sitting on the sidelines waiting for a turn.

Yet so many professions have “outsourced” the training of young people to universities, expecting the higher-education sector to provide ready-made graduates who can step straight into corporate jobs.

Corporate Australia must get more involved if it wants universities to produce the right volume of graduates, with the right skills, to cope with huge structural change in some industries.

Better still, our largest companies could deliver formal training and qualifications to staff that are recognised industry-wide. As The Economist reported, more multinationals are revamping their training programs, in part to close the gap between business and higher education. Australian business should watch this trend closely.

Working on their own, or with the university sector, our largest corporations could offer corporate-branded graduate courses. A Commonwealth Bank Master’s of Applied Finance (with accreditation from a university partner), anybody? How about a BHP Billiton Bachelor Degree in Mining Engineering for young BHP workers.

My guess is such degrees would make these employers even more attractive to the best and brightest students, aid retention and be a significant point of difference among employers.

Perhaps media companies desperate to find new revenue sources could educate thousands of journalism students (through mostly online training), rather than see tens of millions of dollars in fees go the higher-education sector to train our next generation of media professionals.

Only a handful might gain full-time employment at the media company with which they train, but a three-year accredited degree from a leading newspaper, with on-the-job education (and by-lines), is a better learning experience that three years in university classrooms – and would have higher industry recognition in my view.

By “insourcing” more graduate training, companies could provide tailored education, reduce education costs, get young people into the workforce faster, pick the best talent for full-time work after assessing them for a few years, and find new revenue streams by leveraging their intellectual property into the higher-education market. These are degrees designed and taught by companies, in conjunction with universities.

Yes, a corporate degree does not have the same cache as a university one. Purists would argue a corporate qualification is not independent, possibly narrowly framed, and not underpinned by academic research. Or tacky and too commercial. Surely corporates could partner universities to create corporate-branded diplomas or degrees with genuine academic rigour – and in turn create new revenue streams for a high-education sector under intense funding pressure.

As bachelor degrees become less valuable over time, and as more emphasis is placed on skills, knowledge and training, corporate-branded education – not short courses, but full diplomas, bachelor or postgraduate courses — could achieve significant recognition across industry, provided it is well-structured and well-regarded among its participants.

Corporate “campuses” are much more prevalent in the US. Look at the success of companies, such as McDonald’s, that have extensive in-house training and fast-track outstanding twentysomething managers to run multi-million-dollar franchises. How many universities do that?

We’ll never solve the problem of teenage unemployment and safeguard our graduate recruitment market if we rely only on governments and the not-for-profit sector. Corporate Australia needs to get more involved, bring more education back in-house in conjunction with universities, and close the gap between training and the labour market for young people.

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‘Training mine’ scheme attempted in Queensland

A former union boss who made millions of dollars setting up a NSW coal mine which he claimed was a training facility allegedly tried the same scheme in Queensland.
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John Maitland is giving evidence at the Independent Commission Against Corruption this week as it investigates how he came to be granted a mining licence in the Hunter Valley when the department had advised against it.

It has been confirmed Mr Maitland also established Springsure Mining Pty Ltd to bid for a mining licence in central Queensland.

Craig Ransley, an investor in the Hunter Valley mine, bankrolled the project.

A spokesman for the Queensland Department of Natural Resources and Mines said Springsure Mining representatives gave then-mining minister Geoff Wilson a verbal presentation.

The spokesman emphasised Mr Maitland, former Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union boss, was not at the meeting but the representatives proposed building a training mine near Springsure in Queensland.

“Present at the meeting with Minister Wilson were Mr Craig Ransley, executive chairman of Resco Services Pty Ltd, and Mr Peter Murray, who at the time was a recently retired national secretary of the CFMEU,” the spokesman said.

“No commitments were given by Minister Wilson at the meeting and no further action was taken by the department about this proposal.”

Just months before the January 2009 meeting, Mr Maitland’s company had been granted a licence to mine in Doyle Creek – estimated to have between 300 million and 550 million tonnes of coal – though no other tenders were sought for it.

In the company’s exploration application Mr Maitland, a former head of the Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union, said it had 70 million tonnes and would be used as a training mine.

The licence was announced by the NSW state government on Christmas Eve 2008 and just one month later Mr Maitland’s company sought a personal meeting with the Queensland minister to pitch a similar “training” mine.

Department records indicate Springsure Mining Pty Ltd has never lodged an application for a mining licence in central Queensland.

Mr Maitland’s NSW company, Doyles Creek, was sold into NuCoal in 2010 and floated on the ASX with shares skyrocketing in price.

Mr Maitland’s $165,000 investment into the company turned into a portfolio worth up to $14 million.

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Twins test whether tunefulness is in the genes

Twin singers Yasmin and Yolander Obsolom. Photo: Wayne TaylorCan sing? Can’t sing? It doesn’t matter to University of Melbourne researchers, who are seeking twins for a world-first study into whether singing ability is genetic.
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Twins aged over 15 years are wanted for a study also involving the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music and the Australian Twin Registry to assess if it is nature or nurture that most influences whether people can sing.

Lead researcher Associate Professor Sarah Wilson said the study might determine differences between a genetic link to singing and the result of sharing the same experiences growing up, such as singing with parents and at school and playing singing games.

“If we find in this study . . . the twins who are identical more closely resemble each other in their ability to sing a perfect pitch tune, then that’s strong evidence that they are genetically determined,” she said.

“We’re particularly interested in this study about the genetic factors. What role does nurture as opposed to nature have.”

She said the study would help in teaching music and developing education programs.

Study participant and tenor Daniel Thomson said he and his identical twin brother Matthew, 25, were soloists who also enjoyed singing together.

“We are both quite individual people and don’t necessarily identify ourselves solely as ‘twin singers’,” Daniel said.

Also involved in the study are country and western singers Yasmin and Yolanda, whose experience of pairing up musically has resulted in performances of all sizes and recording an EP. Now they are focusing on performing at this year’s Tamworth Music Festival.

Associate Professor Wilson was hopeful the study would be nationwide with the help of Australia’s large twin registry, which has about 35,000 pairs of twins. The registry has already helped provide candidates for research into conditions such as heart disease, cancer and epilepsy.

Researchers are expecting final results for the singing study in 18 months.

“The more people that we can get to join in the better, because we know that singing is so beneficial for our mental health and for our physical health, and it’s something that we want more Australians to participate in over time,” Associate Professor Wilson said.

Participants do not need any singing or musical experience. Researchers will be recruiting for up to 12 months. To join the study and complete the 30-minute survey visit twins苏州美睫培训.au.

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The gentle art of seduction: an Aussie goes Valley part 2

I knew it would be tough when I moved from Sydney to San Francisco last month with my start-up RecruitLoop. We have limited budget, big goals and tight timeframes. We’re building two marketplaces, Australia and the US, from the ground up. How can we be successful?
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Building a global product is something nearly every Australian start-up dreams about. There’s an illusion that technology companies can just flick the switch to ‘turn on’ a new market. The reality (for us at least) is different. It requires hard work. Planning. Some luck. And more hard work. It’s rarely glamorous.

Every great company has to start somewhere. Uber is a US start-up with a mobile booking service for limos and taxis, which recently launched in Sydney. Their first action? Hire a local team and go meet drivers.

Another example is General Assembly, one of the leading start-ups in ‘Silicon Alley’ – the tech scene in New York City. It’s set up offices at Fishburners, Sydney’s premier start-up co-working space, and invests quality time building a community with the residents.

This motivates me to jump out of bed every morning (despite running constantly on two timezones), knowing that all these scalable, tech-based companies started at the ground floor. Behind every ‘overnight success’ was years of hard work.

We’re facing the same challenge, just in reverse. We have a model that’s working in Australia, now looking to launch the US. We have a technical platform, international validation and proven demand on the ground.

But how to take the first steps, get noticed and start winning customers?

The challenge is no less daunting after four weeks in San Francisco. We’re breaking it down in three ways: by narrowing the scope, building social proof, and throwing lots of pebbles.

Narrowing the scope

Geographically the US isn’t one single market, but a combination of regional areas with very different features. We’re initially focused on one: the Bay Area around San Francisco.

Building a two markets, Australia and the US, requires even more focus. We currently focused on supply (finding independent recruiters) before demand (finding employers), to build initial ‘liquidity’ in our market. In practice that means I’m ‘recruiting recruiters’, which is a surprising turn of the tables for many of them.

Building social proof

The Bay Area is an incredibly networked environment, with reputation as its currency. You need referrals. Warm introductions. Testimonials. The higher the profile of the referrer the better. Use them to build credibility, when you’ve got nothing else.

For example, RecruitLoop received glowing praise last year from Jason Calacanis (a high profile investor and blogger), after I presented on his internet talk show. In Australia, we’re trained to be humble about these sort of things. Or just mention them in passing. That’s certainly my first instinct. The dreaded tall poppy syndrome.

But now I’m bumping into tall poppies on every street corner. We share an office building with Twitter and Yammer (acquired by Microsoft for $1 billion). There’s no room for wall flowers. What might be called boasting in Australia is simply ‘social proof’ over here (within reason). It’s one of the most important weapons in cutting through the noise and it really works.

With that in mind, we printed t-shirts and business cards to use at events with a quote and Jason’s mugshot. I’ve had people tap me on the shoulder to learn more, while standing in line for coffee. And it really helps steer any conversation around to what we do, without having to force the issue. The last thing I want is to for people to think I’m some kind of desperate salesperson.

Throwing pebbles…lots of them

What does this mean? We make many small bets, we’re constantly active, with the sole purpose of generating awareness and growth. Every action is like throwing a pebble into a pond. It has ripple effects. Individual pebbles might not move the needle. But when combined, the ripples interact, magnifying the impact. We learn from the results, then think about scaling them.

In practice, this means we’re focused on free and cheap activities. We can’t blast the market with advertising costing tens of thousands a day. We need to be smarter (and scrappier) to hack our way to growth.

This means attending events and meeting stacks of new people for coffees every week. I’m crossing the city on a second-hand bicycle, alongside thousands of cyclists in dedicated lanes. It’s reminiscent of the commute I’d make from from Bondi to Ultimo, but with glimpses of the Golden Gate instead of the Harbour Bridge, and swapping the SFS for the Giants’ stadium.

When I arrive, I’m usually wearing a branded t-shirt and as a rule, I just ask questions. It’s never a sales pitch, just about building relationships. The ‘pay it forward’ culture in Silicon Valley means everyone is happy to help with another introduction, referral or suggestion. For example, one coffee meeting led to an introduction to the head of talent at a global venture fund. Once we’d lunched together (Mexican – excellent tacos), I had warm introductions lined up at tens of start-ups.

But isn’t this just traditional sales? In a start-up it’s different. It’s less about sales and more about personal evangelism. You’re intimately tied to your product. The problem: your product is in development and often incomplete. So you’re selling the vision, as much (or more) than the product itself.

It’s grassroots stuff, but has immediate impact.

It’s too soon to judge success. But the signs are there. We’ve accepted our first 16 US recruiters to build up the local offering and have signed our first local customers – a management consultancy firm, along with several smaller start-ups. It’s early days, but we’re making steady progress. The trick now is to make sure we have the logistics and operating capability to keep growing, and serve the US market as well as we’ve done in Australia.

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Boorowa Central School remembers sacrifices

Boorowa Central School honoured the sacrifices of Australia’s services personnel in war at a ceremony on Anzac Day two weeks ago.
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The district’s RSL attended as a guest party while Fr Martin Maunsell addressed the crowd which gathered to mark the day.

Local students also joined the town’s Anzac March, while senior Central School captains Katie Anderson and Joshua Carmody assisted at the 11am service in front of the Boorowa War Memorial.

Boorowa Central School students honour the memory of services personnel who served Australia in war.

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Death wishes to go on electronic record

People will be able to store their dying wishes on an electronic record, accessible to their chosen doctors, hospitals or family members. Photo: Karl HilzingerPeople will soon be able to record their dying wishes, such as whether they want to be resuscitated or kept alive by a life support system, on their electronic health record.
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Health Minister Tanya Plibersek announced the changes on Thursday as part of a $10 million Commonwealth commitment to allow people to store so-called Advance Care Directives on their electronic health record.

“Most families want to be true to the wishes of their loved ones as they approach the end of their lives, and Advanced Care Directives allow that to happen,” Ms Plibersek said.

Ms Plibersek said by storing their wishes on an electronic record, people would be able to share their plans with chosen doctors, hospitals, family members or carers.

“Because it’s online, the advance care plan will be easily available,” Ms Plibersek said.

“For example, if an elderly man from the Gold Coast is admitted to a hospital while visiting his family in Melbourne, his treating doctors and nurses would have access to information about his end of life care wishes.”

An Advanced Care Directive can include whether a person wishes to be resuscitated, whether they wish to be fed intravenously or by a tube, and whether they want to be kept alive by a breathing machine or a life support system.

Ms Plibersek said it was difficult for patients, their families and health professionals to talk about how a person wanted to spend their final days.

“But having patient intentions clearly expressed in an advanced care plan will make it easier for their wishes to be met,” she said.

Bill Silvester, president of the International Society of Advance Care Planning and End of Life Care, welcomed the announcement, which he said would guarantee patients stayed in charge of their care.

“If a patient is admitted to hospital, doctors will be able to see exact details of their wishes for end-of-life care,” he said.

“It ensures that the patient stays front and centre and maintains control of what will be happening to them when they can no longer speak for themselves,” Associate Professor Silvester said.

Ms Plibersek also announced the Commonwealth would provide $800,000 over two years for an advance care planning project led by Associate Professor Silvester.

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