Thought Leadership

Our Thought Leadership platform is dedicated to the worker learner, someone who is passionate about continuous learning, developing skills and staying abreast of new trends to further their career. With contributions from across the university, from academics who are leaders in their field, our original, bite-sized Thought Leadership pieces are designed to provide you with the latest professional insights to inspire and fuel your career.
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Paying it forward

Do you supervise student placements in your workplace? Taking a nervous and excited student under your wing can be challenging, but Michaela Smyth and Prof Andrea Bialocerkowski reminds us that it is also the rewarding first step of building the workplace of tomorrow.

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Business is a creative practice

Who are the creative people in your organisation? The answer might surprise you. Dr Rae Cooper uncovers creativity in all corners of our workplace, and suggests that nurturing creativity, wherever we find it, can make our organisations stronger.

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Crisis management - ignorance is not bliss

Do you know what to do if your organisation is plunged into a crisis? In this personal and dramatic look at crisis management, Dr Sara Ekberg and crisis management expert, Bo Carlsson, provide a framework for preparing your organisation for the unthinkable.

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Essential business - a financial health check

Does checking your bank balance bring anxiety? If it does, you're not alone. These are tough times for so many. Dr Tracey West gently guides us through some steps that can help us check in on our financial health.

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Building your tribe - the use of personal branding

Do you have a personal brand? While it may be tempting to dismiss the idea, how we present ourselves and connect with others in the digital landscape is a key skill for the modern worker. Associate Professor Naomi Birdthistle walks us through the first steps of building your personal brand.

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Adaptation - it's a mindset

How do we adapt our lives, businesses and communities to meet the challenges of climate change? Dr Johanna Nalau suggests we start by analysing our mindset. Understanding how we think and how we make decisions is a critical skill in adapting to a changing planet.

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Design as strategy — not decoration

All too often graphic designers are brought onto a project right at the end, before we hit print. Associate Professor Dominique Falla points out that a designer and the insights they offer can be far more than just decorating. For a client, a closer working relationship with a designer will result in an enhanced overall strategy.

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The Professional Learning Hub is Griffith University’s platform for professional learning. Our tailored professional learning focuses on the issues that are important to you and your team. Bringing together the expertise of Griffith University’s academics and research centres, our professional learning is designed to deliver creative solutions for the workplace of tomorrow. Whether you are looking for opportunities for yourself, or your team we have you covered.

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How music can help advance the SDGs

Does music feature in your work life? Maybe it should. Professor Brydie-Leigh Bartleet points out that while music provides pleasure, it can also activate the social imagination and help individuals, communities and organisations working towards the UN's SDGs.

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Becoming a lifelong (un)learner

We all know lifelong learning is important, but have you ever considered the skills you've been acquiring throughout your career need to be unlearned? Associate Professor Katherine Main sheds light on possibly the most valuable skill of the 21st Century - the ability to unlearn.

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Sustainability - the system as a whole

Dr Saffron Benner links the seemingly disparate disciplines of theatre and sustainability and points out that whether you're trying to create a meaningful performance, or achieve the United Nations' SDGs, you need to see how the many moving parts work together.

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Equity - it's a matter of attitude

All workplaces can and should be inclusive according to Dr Dinesh Palipana OAM. And he should know. In addition to becoming the first quadriplegic medical intern in Queensland, he is a champion of workplace inclusivity. In a personal account, he reminds us that making a workplace inclusive is just matter of attitude.

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SDGs ...a mission-led approach

We've got under a decade to achieve the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Alex Hannant and Ingrid Burkett of Griffith University's Yunus Centre, not only believe we can achieve them, they suggest how. Make no mistake, it'll take a global effort, but we've done it before, and now the stakes are higher than ever.

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Beyond the fourth paradigm of science - big data

Big Data is ushering in a new era. Griffith University's Professor Bela Stantic made headlines with correct predictions of the Trump and Morrison elections. But this is just the beginning. Big data will affect every industry on the planet, and fundamentally change the way we understand and interact with the world.

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Why some working women feel like dead dirt

Has the modern working world ripped the very life out of you? You're not alone. Like most of the Earth's agricultural land, many women workers have been over tilled. Dr Faith Valencia-Forrester suggests a course of action that might connect you back to nature, and yourself.

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Uncertainty: three ways to think

The future is uncertain, and strategies that may have worked in the past can't be relied on tomorrow. Rather than be bewildered by uncertainty, Professor Sima Dimitrijev suggests we should embrace it. He outlines three practical ways to help us make decisions in a chaotic world.

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Giftedness ...what they didn't teach you in school

What do you think of when you hear that a student is gifted or talented? Dr Michelle Ronksley-Pavia debunks the myths and expands our understanding of giftedness and talent, and suggests that identifying and supporting giftedness and talent in an individual is a lifelong process.

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Female Leadership

Do we need to talk about female leadership again?

Dr Heather Stewart and A/Prof Deborah Delaney lament that gender inequity still exists, but suggest with current movements like #Metoo we are on the verge of a tipping point, as female voices command attention.

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Risk management - a lesson from Covid

How much risk is too much risk? Take the pandemic, where we have witnessed the rolling out of various strategies aimed at mitigating risk to varying degrees of success. Dr Lachlan Guthrie from Griffith University's International Water Centre highlights some core principles of risk management that are relevant to your organisation's strategy, while equally relevant to the management of a pandemic.

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Leadership glue

Trust: leadership glue

Trust might seem an obvious component of good leadership, but what does it mean in practice? Putting aside pithy leadership quotes, Professor Peter Grootenboer and Professor Christine Edwards-Groves unpack the concept of trust and outline practical steps that can help a leader earn, nurture and sustain trusting relationships in their team.

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Watching nature at work

Watching nature at work

Do you ever stare out the office window and watch the birds do their thing? Whether we work at home or in a concrete jungle, Professor Darryl Jones reminds us that even small interactions with nature can help make our working day worthwhile.

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You're on mute! (and have been for a while)

Professor Nick Barter takes the all too familiar, modern day phenomena of speaking while being on mute in a meeting, and turns that into a rally cry for a better future, in which those who are, and have been, on mute, become part of the larger conversation.

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Social media for business - the legal hazards

The use of social media is at an all time high, and organisations are liable for what is said (and not said) under their banner. Those that manage social media activity need to navigate this minefield and mitigate risk. To get a handle on your social media legal exposure, Professor Mark Pearson lays out the first steps in establishing a risk analysis strategy.

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Financial literacy ...are women opting-out?

Financial literacy ...are women opting out? It's a question that still needs asking. Dr Tracey West, Dr Laura de Zwaan and Dr Di Johnson remind us that it isn't that women are not interested in money, but the way financial literacy is often structured (at work and at home) undermines the values-based motivations that many women have when it comes to managing their finances.

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Are you part of the green or climate workforce?

Climate change is an existential threat, but there is an ever-increasing workforce out there tackling it head on. You might not consider your skill set is ready to mitigate climate change, but Associate Professor Michael Howes points out you may already have the tools to get started in the green workforce.

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Talking about religion at work, taboo or okay?

Is talking about religion at work a no go zone? Along with politics and our personal lives is it a topic best left at home? Dr Adis Duderija suggests the issue may not be so black and white, and that exercising a respectful curiosity might actually broaden our intellectual horizons, and make for a more meaningful workplace.

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Lessons for the PM from the everyday workplace

How do leaders deal with allegations of serious misconduct by a senior member of the team? Are the systems in place within your organisation capable of facing and addressing challenges such as those we are currently seeing within the highest offices in the land? Professor A J Brown argues for a holistic system by which the trust of stakeholders - both internal and external  - is earned and maintained.

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Is your lack of imagination killing the planet?

We're taught from a young age to associate the concept of imagination with positivity, but that’s not always the case. As we teeter on the edge of environmental catastrophe, the time to reimagine the world is now. In a personal and philosophical reflection, Professor Nick Barter suggests business leaders need to harness their imaginations to enhance life on earth, not to end it.

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Want change? Don't wait for management

Want change in your organisation? Well, perhaps you need to drive it. Dr Luke Houghton reminds us that always waiting for good ideas from above flies in the face of history, where real change has often come from below.

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Stop wasting your staff's time

Let's be honest, we've all been subjected to professional development that's been poorly planned with no clear learning outcomes. It doesn't have to be this way. Dr Steven Hodge explores the world of taxonomies and outlines proven strategies for learning design, helping you and your organisation deliver optimal training programs.

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Inclusive workplace...but what if you're autistic?

Research has shown that workers with autism possess skills that are in high demand in today's job market. Why then are they nearly 8 times more likely to be unemployed or underemployed? If nothing else the pandemic has proven our work environments can be flexible. Dr Kate Simpson suggests we should use that flexibility to embrace a more diverse workforce.

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The Ethics of Leadership

How do you face ethical dilemmas as a leader? Being able to understand and incorporate your ethical beliefs and values within your team and organisation is a critical skill for an effective leader. By referencing Victorian Premier Daniel Andrew's leadership, Associate Professor Jeanne Allen explores work place ethical dilemmas and how we might begin to make sense of them.

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Has the last twelve months got you feeling out of control? Shaken by disruption and unsure of what’s next? As we experience fundamental and rapid changes that challenge our policymaking, business and personal futures, Susan Harris Rimmer and Elise Stephenson share their thoughts on antifragility and how to gain from disorder.

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Ethical Technologist

The Ethical Technologist

How does ethics factor into the decision making of those we rely on to develop new and innovative technologies that are a part of everyday life? Dr David Tuffley outlines some fundamental skills needed by the ethical technologist.

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Legal risks of Facebook comments

Can you be sued over your Facebook friends' comments? An alarming question, but one well worth pondering. As organisations continue to explore ways to connect with stakeholders through social media, leaders need processes for how messages are shaped, shared and managed. Professor Mark Pearson sheds light on an emerging legal risk that affects us all.

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How do you rate your wellbeing? Whether at work, or in our private lives, this year our wellbeing is surely being tested. In this article, Katherine Main outlines some of our most basic human needs. By having an appreciation of these needs, and by showing a little empathy, we might just be able to weather this storm.

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Six futures of work

What does the future of work look like? No matter what industry you’re in, or what your career aspirations are, the answer affects us all. Alan Burton-Jones helps us understand the trends, both historical and current, that have shaped where we are, where we might be going, and the skills we will need to get there.

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Storm to perform: change and teamwork

How do you lead your team to navigate change? If there's only one certainty in today's workplace, change is inevitable. To maintain a high performing team, we need to embrace change and adapt, to perform at our best.  Gaery Barbery identifies the four stages all teams must go through to achieve success.

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Marketing: trust the process

Have you considered how your business builds relationships? In these turbulent times the process of marketing can be easily overlooked. But no matter how much the world is changing good marketing skills remain a constant. Robin Pentecost provides a timely, and reassuring, reminder to trust the marketing process.

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Working with Children

Working with children

What are the skills you need to work with children? Increasingly, in a multitude of sectors, today's workforce needs to continue to develop capabilities to work alongside children and young people. They're talking to us, clearly, and it's our responsibility to build a culture promoting respectful communication. This article provides a practical way to develop these skills. By Jennifer Cartmel, Marilyn Casley & Kerry Smith.

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Cyber security: it's all our business

How cyber security aware are you? Governments and businesses around the world are taking the ever-increasing threat of cyber-attacks seriously, and so should you. Dr Hui Tian suggests that when you put aside the high-tech jargon, it becomes clear cyber security is a multi-disciplinary field, and one we all should have a vested interest in.

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Leading in virtual environments

How do you lead your team in a virtual environment? Many of us that manage staff have grown accustomed to regular face-to-face interactions. But how do we maintain team performance, communication and cohesion when we are asked to manage in a virtual environment? Dr David Tuffley introduces strategies to help leaders drive success in a virtual first world.

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How Health Informatics shape the way we live

Do you ever consider the health data that drove the decision to make you work from home, or that placed social restrictions on you? Do you check the daily rise and fall of infection rates? As our lives are increasingly shaped by health data and its interpretation, Sheree Lloyd and Lawrence Lim provide a timely overview of the critical discipline of Health Informatics.

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Are you an entrepreneur or an intrapreneur?

Ever wondered what the difference is between an entrepreneur and an intrapreneur? Does the organisation you work for encourage and support intrapreneurship? In this thought-provoking article A/Prof Naomi Birdthistle unpacks the terms and outlines the key skills needed for both, and in doing so suggests that while you may not want to strike out on your own, you can still dream big in the organisation you work for.

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Resilience. Do you have it? We hear this term all the time, we are told it's a key skill we need to have, but what does the word actually mean? From deep in the heart of lockdown Melbourne, Professor Julian Meyrick provides a provocative and personal exploration of the idea. This is essential reading for anyone interested in resilience and wondering where we can expect to find it.

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Working with Diversity

Do you worry whether your work is inclusive, respectful and culturally safe? As human services and social work become increasingly important in the future world of work, the ability to collaborate with diverse clients is critical as service models continue to evolve. Dr Paul Harris sheds light on some of the changing trends and opportunities in the sector.

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The world in your lunchbox

Are you stuck at home, or in a mostly empty office, and dreaming of exotic destinations? Despite borders being closed and flights grounded there's still a way. With travel shop windows available from your screen, and the destinations at your fingertips virtually endless, Georgette Leah Burns, in a provocative exploration of the new normal, suggests your next journey is limited only by your imagination.

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FutureNormal: moving online

Are you working more and more online nowadays? You're not alone. In this article we continue our conversation with Prof. Nick Barter (Academic Director of Griffith Online) and Prof. Chris Fleming (Director of Griffith Institute for Tourism) about this shift. Their responses suggest Covid-19 could have some positive impacts on the world of work. Moving forward, perhaps our workplaces will be more collaborative, more flexible and less carbon reliant?

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Things we can learn from kids and science

Has work lost its sense of wonder? Are you afraid to show surprise, or learn new things, or answer “I don’t know” to a question? STEM presenter, Clare Van Dorssen, reminds us that it’s okay to be curious and surprised by new knowledge, and that perhaps to find more meaning in our workaday lives we need to embrace the long-lost child within.

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The best gift you can give yourself

How are you feeling today? Think about that for a moment. A deceptively simple question, yet often fiendishly tricky to answer. In today's challenging times a little self-care can go a long way in supporting our well-being. Providing practical tools to analyse our state of mind this article gives substance to the saying, ‘self-care is giving the world the best of you instead of what’s left of you’. By Jacinta Hawgood, A/Prof Michelle Hood and Prof Andrea Bialocerkowski.

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How to Make a Supportive Work Culture

Do you lead a team at work? Have you considered each of your team members' emotional wellbeing? Regardless of the size of your team, the ability to get the job done often comes down to team culture. Assoc Prof Lauren Ball from the Menzies Health Institute provides five insights on creating a supportive work culture.

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Leadership is not Exclusive to the Big Boss

Who are the leaders in your organisation? The answer is complex. Everyone knows who the big boss is, but in large organisations leaders can be found in many places. Professor Peter Grootenboer outlines the importance of middle leadership, and suggests we should acknowledge and support these leaders – not to prepare them to be, or be like the ‘big boss’, but to equip them to lead in the ‘hot site’ of an organisation.

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Bookmarks and Fragments

Do you read for work or pleasure, or both? In a world of social distancing and isolation it seemed we were all about to finally tackle that pile of unread books beside the bed. But did it happen? As we slowly emerge from our bunkers, novelist and Griffith Review editor, Ashley Hay, seeks to understand what it means to escape into new, literary worlds when our own day to day lives are so strange.

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Positive on Purpose: no magical thinking required

It might be a tough call to stay positive at the moment, but did you know that positive psychology (as opposed to the positivity glibly deployed in memes) is a scientifically researched phenomena? Dr Mia O’Brien provides a timely reminder that positivity is a practical tool for work and life.

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5 reasons to avoid accessing your super early

Times are tough, and the federal government has kicked in with a range of unprecedented stimulus and support packages. One of the more controversial packages is granting early access to our superannuation. Dr Tracey West gives us five reasons to think twice before dipping into our retirement savings.

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FutureNormal - Living in a Virtual First World

From work, to learning, to kids’ birthday parties and Friday afternoon drinks, the Covid-19 crisis has meant we’ve all had to move rapidly towards the virtual world in our day to day lives. Professor Nick Barter and Professor Chris Fleming suggest the new normal is here to stay, and that's not a bad thing.

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Creativity in the time of Covid-19

In a world where the term ‘creative’ can be applied to almost any endeavour, what do we really mean when we label ourselves and our work ‘creative’? Also, if everything is creative, perhaps nothing is. Professor Julian Meyrick walks us through the complex concept of ‘creativity’, unpacking its usage and history and where it might be taking us in the new, Covid world.

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A short guide to (not) working from home

These are strange times indeed. If you're lucky you're grappling with the stresses of working from home. We at the Professional Learning Hub are in the same boat. Here's our very quick guide to (not) working from home.

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Introducing the Impact Economy

The promise of the ‘impact economy’ brings together a number of ideas, strategies and practices that are gaining traction and becoming mainstream. In this article, Alex Hannant and Prof Ingrid Burkett from Griffith's Yunus Centre, outline an overarching view of the ‘impact economy’ - the what, why and how.

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Is it time to declutter your digital closet?

How many social media accounts do you have? How many do you use? Which ones make you happy? And which ones don't? Dr Timo Dietrich and Mr Yannick van Hierden from Social Marketing @ Griffith offer a few simple but effective tips to help you declutter your digital closet.

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Understanding How People Learn in the Workplace

Workplaces are always looking for more efficient ways for workers to be productive. So how do employees continue to learn in a work environment? A/Prof Sarojni Choy discusses the different ways people learn in these settings and the importance for employees to optimise the opportunities for learning to meet the changing nature of work.

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5 tips for Managing your Super

Your superannuation is not something you think about everyday, however your quality of life post-retirement is shaped by the decisions you make today. Dr Tracey West shares her insight and provides strategies to help you maximise the potential of your superannuation.

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Many of us live and work in cities packed with high-rise buildings. We spend more than 90 percent of our lives indoors, largely unaware that the quality of our ‘building façades’ (our building ‘skins’) make an enormous difference to our comfort and safety, and play a big role in determining the environmental impact of our buildings.

Façades protect us from the weather outside and connect with internal structures to keep us safe, high up off the ground. Yet we cannot take them for granted. These learning conversations, presented by the Professional Learning Hub, with A/Prof Cheryl Desha, explore an important feature of our built environment.

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As part of our ever-growing catalogue of bite-sized pieces of professional learning, The Professional Learning Hub is proud to present Positive on Purpose, a podcast series by Dr Mia O'Brien.

It might be a tough call to stay positive at the moment, but did you know that positive psychology is a scientifically researched phenomena? Throughout this series Dr Mia O’Brien provides a timely reminder that positivity is a practical tool for work and life.

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Case studies


How does an organisation redesign itself to meet the challenges of the 21st century? We partnered with UAP, a global organisation, to develop a bespoke professional learning program to become FutureNormal.

Find out more UAP