Richard McLellan

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Richard McLellan is the CEO of one of Australia’s 56 regional Natural Resource Management (NRM) organisations – the Northern Agricultural Catchments Council (NACC) – based at Geraldton in mid-west Australia. He prides himself on having a workforce with considerable diversity – in gender, age, and cultural backgrounds; in working styles, education levels, work location, life experiences and professional skills – and on encouraging and encompassing flexibility into his organisation’s work ethic in any way possible.

Richard said he is acutely aware that flexibility is a major determinant of job satisfaction among many in the workforce, valued more highly than pay-scales and position titles by many employees. Flexibility in working arrangements – such as being able to work part-time, from home, by teleconference, or with compressed work weeks – allows for easier and better balancing of work-life demands and desires. It benefits staff as workers, but also as mums and dads, sisters and brothers – at home, in families and relationships.

As a career environmentalist and one-time Director of Ecological Footprint at WWF, the international conservation organisation, Richard said flexibility is not only “good for our people, but also good for our planet” It stands to reason that fewer hours in the office, or more flexible working conditions – such as teleconferencing instead of driving or flying to meetings – is good for the environment. Flexible working conditions can help us to reduce our consumption (especially of energy and ‘more stuff’), reduce pollution, and thus reduce our overall footprint. And that’s got to be good for the planet – choosing “more time instead of more stuff”.

Carly Stebbing

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Carly Stebbing is a workplace rights advocate and Founder of Resolution123 - a NewLaw firm for employees. NewLaw is a flexible alternative to traditional law firm models. Resolution123 uses technology and flexible work to deliver employment law services to individuals in a fast, simple and affordable way. Carly has over 13 years experience in all aspects of employment law, industrial relations and employee relations, having worked for employer associations, large and boutique law firms and volunteering at community legal centres.The breadth of Carly's experience enables her to advise individuals on the quickest and most effective way to resolve workplace disputes, including underpayments, bullying, harassment, discrimination, sham contracting, redundancy, unfair dismissal and general protections breaches. Carly also helps individuals negotiate employment contracts, bargain for better wages and conditions and negotiate flexible work arrangements. Carly is a Lawyers Weekly Partner of the Year Finalist in Workplace Relations.

Carly is so passionate about flexible work that she left a secure partnership in a reputable employment law firm to create an employment law offering, that helps individuals know and assert their rights to flexible work, and offers truly flexible work to its lawyers. "When I decided to leave traditional legal practice, I went on a journey to find the right type of flexible work for me. I met with top tier firms, mid tier firms and big corporates but none were the right fit, recruiters refused to put me forward for jobs I was plainly highly qualified for because of my desire to work flexibly. It was then that I realised I could create the work I wanted to do flexibly myself, and in fact, felt I had an obligation to, so I founded Resolution123. I advocate for people who have suffered from "flexism" and truly believe that by enforcing our rights at work we can make a positive change to our own lives and our community. To paraphrase something a client who is enforcing her work rights, said to me recently - it is one of our primary responsibilities as parents and humans, to make the world a better place."

David Glasson

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David commenced his working life as a chartered accountant before transitioning to financial roles across the entertainment and agribusiness sectors. In 2006 David moved to Canberra with General Practice Education and Training where he held Chief Financial/Operating and Acting CEO roles over eight years. David was then appointed to lead the Victorian Metropolitan Alliance for GP Training in late 2014. He is currently the CEO of Eastern Victoria GP Training (EV).

EV are responsible for the delivery of GP education and training to over 300 registrars across Eastern Victoria under the Australian General Practice Training program.

It is all about the right training being provided in the right locations, to the right individuals. This ensures our future GP workforce are skilled up to provide ongoing quality primary care to all our communities.

David is a long-standing member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia and New Zealand and is also a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. He holds a Masters in Public Health and is actively engaged with stakeholders throughout the changing landscape of General Practice and primary care.

For David, flexible work arrangements respect the principle of mutual obligation. Where an employer is open to flexible work arrangements in support of an individual’s circumstances, a corresponding respect exists for the reasonable needs and obligations of the employer. For David there are multiple opportunities to engage effectively with individuals over flexible work arrangements. It’s not a one size fits all and what can be done may be influenced at least in part, by the role itself. The best policies though, are those where an individual’s circumstances and preferences can be aligned with the needs of the organisation. It’s about respect for both the individual and the objectives of the role through open dialogue.

Nadia Taylor

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Nadia is an executive Director of Livingstones, a national Industrial Relations, Human Resources and Organisational Development consulting firm. Nadia has delivered industrial relations and human resources services to organisations nationally for nearly 20 years across many industries, with specialties in education, business services, utilities, health services and not-for-profit. She focuses on aligning an organisation’s operations with its strategic vision through innovative human resource practices, including courageously addressing the most challenging aspects of people management. She is also a non-executive Director of TransitCare, a community transport organisation.

“I’m passionate about flexible working as it fosters an inclusive workplace, which ultimately results in increased productivity, job satisfaction and diversity of thinking. At Livingstones we are passionate about creating a flexible work environment to cater for people’s personal and professional aspirations outside of work.  For me personally, work flexibility allows me to spend quality time to care for my 1 year old son Atlas and continue to lead the strategic direction of Livingstones. In the last year I have had the opportunity to try out various flexible working arrangements (including bringing Atlas to work, taking him to client meetings and working remotely) and this experience has reinforced to me that flexibility is the future of work.”

Nadia has a passion for innovation and cutting-edge business solutions and her strengths lie in being able to see into the horizon and to help others view things from multiple perspectives. Since her appointment as Director in 2008, Nadia has led the Livingstones marketing, growth and innovation board profiles, and now oversees all strategy & business operations.  

Brad Barnes

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Brad Barnes is the Practice Director of Callida Consulting.  "Since joining Callida a year ago the reduction in my stress levels and improvements to my quality of life has had a significant impact on me and my family.

As a father of two active boys and my wife working shift work at Qantas, the balancing act of work with school drop off, after school activities and my own pursuits are always a challenge.

However, having an employer that embraces flexible working arrangements allows me to maintain the right balance in my life while also achieving career and family goals that are important to me."

Justina Bisset

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My name is Justina Bisset, I work full time as a team leader whilst managing my online store, social media profiles, producing art work and the list goes on, all thanks to being able to work flexibly.

"I am passionate about breaking the stigma that flexible working is only for carers, and only for part timers. Its so much more than that, and for an ambitious artist and leader such as myself, its my lifeline. Being able to work flexibly and change my week to suit my other commitments means I can work on my passion. In turn, because I am able to do this, I put more passion into my work as a Team Leader. Its such a positive cycle and as a leader im able to do the same for my direct reports and my team is thriving and happy.

I am positive that working flexibly will be part of norm in the cooperate world in the coming years, and I am excited to be one of the people backing this notion."

Tim Morrison

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Many people want to work flexibly, albeit for different reasons. Tim Morrison, HR Business Partner at Mercer (Australia) Pty Ltd, also lives a 2nd career as a professional Boundary Umpire with the Australian Football League (AFL). Tim is deeply passionate about working flexibly, as it’s a true necessity for him, dividing his time between both careers, for which he feels his life has been enriched through it.

Tim fully appreciates that diversity and flexibility in the workplace is essential to fully embracing our individual lifestyles, priorities and personal situations.  By fully embracing these, understanding, accommodating these and engaging in a transparent dialogue engenders trust and inspiration in the workplace. Tim has had four roles in his 8 years at Mercer, further debunking the myth that working flexibly is a barrier to career progression.

Tim is part of a colleague resource group at Mercer, #allrolescanflex, which is aiming to help shift the perceptions and behaviours around flexible working and Making Work, Work. “I am just one example, but what our movement recognises, is that people have lives outside of work, and that is not only a good thing but actually makes for more productive employees. It isn’t just employees with caring responsibilities who need flexible working, though they of course are a prime example, the simple fact is that everyone has a life outside of work. We want to create an inclusive culture where the reason for needing flexibility does not matter.”

Fay Calderone

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Fay Calderone is an employment lawyer who ‘gets’ strategy, people and workplace culture having built a dynamic and innovative practice over 16 years advising HR, C-Suite leaders and Boards on compliance with workplace laws, change management, business protection and representing employers to resolve disputes relating to bullying, discrimination, sexual harassment, adverse action and unfair or unlawful dismissals. Fay was recognised as an emerging leader in the NAB Women’s Agenda leadership Awards in 2014 and more recently was a finalist Mentor of the Year and Partner of the Year in Workplace Relations in the prestigious Lawyers Weekly Awards.

"Flexibility  is imperative to the creation of diverse and inclusive workplaces.  Inclusive workplaces undeniably enhance organisational effectiveness, competitive advantage, enjoy better decision making, improved morale and people management and deliver higher returns to shareholders. 

As the world of work is changing, employees are increasingly working remotely and the four walls of the workplace are evaporating. Flexible work arrangements are increasingly becoming reasonable adjustments that can be reasonably accommodated not only without hardship to employers, but indeed with improved productivity and efficiencies.

Flexibility must be openly and unreservedly available to all employees. If we are ever going to achieve gender equity and increase the number of female leaders, executives and board members, they must be enabled in the same way their male counterparts have been for years. If the negative stigma attached to males requesting flexibility and assuming caring and domestic roles is not removed, women will always be at a disadvantage trying to have it all while they do it all."

Blake Woodward

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I am a first time dad, a management consultant and founder of suittiestroller.com - a website supporting corporate dads in finding work life balance while raising a family, as well as advocating for gender-equal parental leave and support policies. I took 9 months off in my son’s first year and currently work 4 days a week now that my wife and I are both back at work.

Adopting flexible working arrangements have enabled me to be an involved dad. This means assuming responsibilities of daycare drop off, being home to cook dinner and having play time before putting my child to bed. It also means reimagining the possibilities of how and when I work with my team and clients to get the job done.

Becoming a dad has transformed how I view the world and what motivates me at work and in life more broadly. I am passionate about encouraging working dads to challenge the traditional corporate mindset, and equipping them to make important decisions for balancing and sustaining career and family life. Flexible working enables me to attain the personal fulfillment that comes from being both a loving, actively involved dad, while continuing to pursue a demanding and rewarding career.