Vision, strategy, communication, persistence and …
Having owned my own businesses, taught university students, held public office and led positive change for communities, I have appreciated and learnt from each experience. However, it was those years as an entrepreneur and business owner leading a large team of employees that reinforced in me the importance of vision, strategy, communication and persistence.
… an unwavering focus on the customer!
No matter what your industry or sector, customer centricity is vitally important. Customers are the very reason why we do what we do but nowhere are the lessons sharper or more immediately felt than the retail sector. It should therefore come as no surprise that I have taken a relentless, customer driven approach to everything I have done.
Change is the only constant
Technology is transforming the way that we work, communicate, live and recreate. Automation will even inevitably transform the way that we travel.
As Lord Mayor of Adelaide from 2014 - 2018, I delivered Ten Gigabit Adelaide; an ultra-fast fibre optic data network as a partnership between the City of Adelaide and TPG Telecom. I believe that digital infrastructure in a CBD environment has a transformative impact on underwriting the competitiveness of the city and the business community within it.
While disruption is frequently associated with new and innovative technology, this only tells part of the story. Technology is simply the enabler of new ideas and new ways of doing things, especially in business.
With change as the only constant and the pace of disruption accelerating as technology makes new things possible, many business leaders have identified the need to re-invent both themselves and their businesses. Most understand that if they don’t show leadership and disrupt their own business or industry, someone else will.
Embracing disruption is the only option for building sustainable enterprises (both financially and environmentally) and far too many businesses owners have already learned, at great cost, that standing still and trying to deny and defy change is no longer an effective strategy.
Having built multiple businesses, I know what it means to take a financial risk and I have great empathy, insight and support for those that do the same. The relationship between risk and reward strikes to the very core of being a business owner.
My future blog posts will focus on the three important themes of leadership, reinvention and sustainability.
I recently joined Business SA as CEO.
Business SA is the peak body for employers and business owners and supports all industry sectors with a diverse offer of training solutions, mentoring, networking, export services, sponsorship opportunities and public and political advocacy. Business SA assists employers on a daily basis with navigating the complexities of employing staff and complying with their obligations.
As a former business owner, it was more often the things that I didn’t know that kept me up at night and as business becomes increasingly complex, it is Business SA’s core function to assist employers in growing their business and watching their back.
As the first Chamber of Commerce established in Australia, Business SA has an influential history, but it also has an exciting future with a leadership role to play for all South Australians because when businesses grow, there is more opportunity for everyone.
Premier’s Climate Change Council
Often, the reality of climate change is seen as an unsurmountable challenge or impost to be endured, however, this type of thinking ignores the opportunities and denies the potential of emerging industries. As Chair of the Premier’s Climate Change Council in South Australia, I will be looking at sustainable development from both an environmental and economic perspective.
South Australia is well placed to lead the world in providing solutions to address climate change and other sustainability related technologies. It is my personal challenge to identify and champion the innovative solutions created by South Australian entrepreneurs so that they can provide them locally, nationally and globally.
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Thank you for subscribing to my blog and stay tuned for my next post where I will be sharing with you some thoughts about the nature of entrepreneurs and whether being an entrepreneur is something innate or is a skill that can be learned.
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Martin Haese MBA