| "Our Guarantee - If you do not see improved results we will work with you until you do" - Samuel Day, Managing Director Happening People | | "Happening People are highly responsive to the dynamic needs of the Nine Network, delivering cost savings and great people focused results" - Scott Soutar, Station Manager Nine Network Australia | | "We experienced measurable performance change…" - Matt Newcombe, TSA Employment Plus | | "We have grown our business thanks to Happening People" - Mark Flinn, Principal & Wealth Manager, Yellow Brick Road | | "Happening People was able to design solutions which effectively tapped into the idiosyncrasies of our teams" - Elaine Wilson, HR Director, Boehringer Ingelheim |
What's Happening
The newsletter for switched on people
Issue 106 | Autumn 2014

Leadership Profile - Scott Soutar

About Scott
Over the past 6 years Scott has held the esteemed position of Station Manager at Nine Network Australia and Group Executive of Nine Entertainment Co. Scott also manages his own company Soutar P/L. Prior to this Scott worked as the Operations Manager for Seven Network. He is an MBA graduate of Macquarie Universities Graduate School of Management.

What is Leadership to you?
I like strong leaders who back themselves and the decisions they make, firstly they are prepared to make a call and secondly they back it up. That’s why leaders exist – to lead.
You should always know when a leader is the room, because they will hold the room and people will always be interested in what they are saying.

Let’s face it, who hasn’t walked into the bosses office looking for a call on a matter only to have a flip flop session where lots get said, but not action taken. Lots of managers have a view, but leaders have a plan !

Good leaders have the ability to cut through “management claptrap” and get a business moving in the right direction.

Leaders often need to make tough decisions. What tough decision have you had to make in your career?
Without doubt, the single toughest business decisions I have made all relate to restructuring underperforming business units. This always directly affects employees through job loss and forced change.

No matter how many times I am faced with these leadership decisions, they never get easier – these are people’s lives that you are affecting and it’s real.

Call it re-engineering, rightsizing, downsizing or simply consolidation – these are tough, tough decisions to make.

How did you manage your personal stress?
This sounds trite because you hear it all the time, but, I really am an advocate of making sure you find some balance and time for exercise and getting some good sleep. “Switchoff Time” is critical and it means different things to different people.
I alternate between the pool, the stationary bike (I broke my collar bone last time I was on a road bike) and a good hit of tennis – if all else fails, the dog gets a good walk !
Oh, and I switch the phone to silent !

Who is the best leader you have worked with and why?
I wish I could say Richard Branson, but, I have only met him, never worked for him (as yet !)

What do you like and dislike about leading people?
I have no dislikes in leading people, it’s what gets me out of bed….if you can select your team and surround yourself with competent like-minded people, then dare I say, the rest is easIER !

What is the best advice you have received about leading people?
You have to back yourself and be decisive, you can’t lead by consensus…..don’t get me wrong, I am not saying don’t consult, that’s critical……what I am saying is that once you make a decision, back it, resource it
and be prepared to be criticised for it. There will always be opposition, sometimes from the inside and always from the outside.

What is the worst piece of advice you have received?
You know, it’s difficult to quantify, I have never really had bad advice – but I have seen some pretty poor performers in the leadership space, people who didn’t or wouldn’t communicate; others who wouldn’t make a decision and those who were simply had no emotional intelligence and were tough on the wrong issues and bullish on the wrong people.

What advice would you give others in a leadership role?
A lot of organisations promote people to leadership roles based on their technical ability in their chosen field; which is a great basis for advancement, but very few people are really aware of what they are getting themselves into when they accept a tap on the shoulder to step up.

My advice is educate yourself, and then educate yourself some more and when you think you are pretty good – educate yourself some more. I don’t just mean undertake and MBA or tertiary studies….this is key, but also to seek out mentors and people you trust to discuss things and obtain alterative opinions. I think this helps develop a “roundedness” that will help you a lot, not just in business but also throughout your life.

Leadership extends to your personal life too, so, the skills you develop and the experiences you have all add value along the way.

Who in the public eye do you admire for their leadership skills and why?
I was fortunate to have worked in America during the Clinton Presidency (1992 – 2000) and developed a close affinity for what he was able to achieve whilst in the Whitehouse, faced with a hostile house of reps, ongoing investigations into his business affairs whilst Governor of Arkansas amongst other things – he simply punched through it all to deliver results and I believe he remains widely respected for it and this stands out for me.

Question….can leadership be taught or are you just born with it?
I believe managers are taught, leaders are born; they are very different skill sets, management being very structured in its approach, whilst leadership is a far more intuitive activity.

Q & A with Cross Cultural Leadership Specialist- JS Cabway

Your specialty is cross cultural business. How would you describe to corporate Australia what you do?

I truly enjoy helping people and functioning as the critical nexus between East and West with regard to thinking patterns, values, expectations, and modus vivendi. In this connection, I share with audiences my thoughts on cross-cultural leadership, sales, management, negotiations, and strategy. Throughout the years, I’ve been fortunate to be able to share my thoughts with corporate, government, non-profit, and academic audiences.

I’ve been in the global workforce for 30 years now and have literally lived and worked in over 25 countries. I spent 16 years of my life with the U.S. military and United Nations overseas in various roles of business diplomacy, conflict resolution, security analysis, political-risk analysis, and project management. Thus, I’ve received so much diverse training in “getting results” anytime, anywhere, with anyone. In the various settings I was working in worldwide, there was no option for failure. I really had to make something out of nothing. Now, that’s good training.

Peter Drucker, a world-renowned business management professor once said, “Culture eats Strategy.” I generally agree, although as a “business diplomat,” I would prefer to say, “All strategy is founded on culture.”

How do you keep motivated?
When I look back at my life, I recall my global mentors and my family who taught me leadership principles and good values. My thoughts for motivation are founded on saying that goes, “The pools of knowledge we swim are created by the oceans we sail.” Perhaps this goes hand in hand with the idea that cross cultural leadership is the social fabric that holds all of us together. I find that motivating. Another thing that motivates me is all the past difficulties and dangers I’ve experienced, which actually gave me better connectivity with myself and those around me at home and abroad.

What’s a single piece of advice you have been given that you still work with?

My biggest piece of humble advice would be two-fold: First, live and breathe cross cultural and strategic thought as much as possible since global boundaries have now been made obscure by technology and its speed; and Two, be able to accept the fact that “excellent value” is a given in the new millennium, therefore, if you want to stay ahead, you must be able to create “unexpected value,” which is the 21st source for competitive differentiation.

What gives you the biggest thrill?
I do seminars, workshops, and coaching sessions worldwide. I’ve done several here in beautiful Australia. The audiences are extremely smart, demanding, and have a sense of urgency to make a difference. When these sessions are over, I’m so thrilled when people come up to the stage and say, “Hey Joe, what you passed on and what you asked us to think about were so insightful and thought-provoking. I really needed that. Thank you so much.”

What attracted you to [work with] Happening People?
I was attracted by Happening People since it was a small and innovative firm. Being able to be quick, innovative, and open are important traits especially for training and development firms. I also have so many wonderful experiences dealing with the Australian people in its corporate, government, and academic sectors. Furthermore, I had a very comprehensive meetings with Sam Day, who heads Happening People, and we saw eye to eye on a concept that I thought about which I coined: “Gateway to Asia.” The concept is something that we are working on together to build bridges and partnerships in between those down under and East Asia.

What role models do you have?
Wow…there’s so many folks out there who are leading the way every day and most of them will never see the limelight. So to be fair, I would prefer to think of “role concepts.” One concept that I learned a long time ago was this: “A one-handed clap bears only silence.” By this, I learned to appreciate that there is a necessary “interdependency” in all things and by realizing and living by this in a harmonious and truthful way makes one’s role so clear…so meaningful. In short, everyone is my role model since all the world’s a stage. How’s that for “Business Diplomacy”? haha.

What inspires you?

Aside from facilitating, consulting, and coaching, I’m a professor of international business & global affairs at a top-5 university in Korea. I get inspired when I see exchange students and local students engaged academic projects that produce creative synergy. Then they begin to realize all the possibilities in a cross cultural setting. I get inspired by those around me who are much more creative and talented and have made a difference in this world.

If you could invite 3 people to dinner (dead or alive) who would they be?
My wife since it’s her turn to cook dinner. I’d also like to invite UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, who I had the honor to work for directly during my days at the United Nations. He has so much knowledge, wisdom, and commitment to doing great things for our global society. Lastly, I’d like to invite the CEO of Samsung Electronics, so that I can share with him my thoughts on cross cultural leadership, and the challenges of and opportunities for leading a fast moving, global firm such as Samsung Electronics.

When you have spare time what do you like doing?
What spare time? I live and breathe what I do. I love what I do so I’m constantly working but it doesn’t seem like it. I’m fortunate to have that. Now, as for “relaxing” – I like to read various things to keep creative and abreast. I like to watch and learn from passersby. I like to hike in the mountains. I like water sports like para-sailing. I like to do as much as I can, and open-minded to trying new things. Non-lethal things preferably!.

Personally Speaking - 2014

www.HappeningPeople.comDear Happening Person,

2014 has sure kicked into gear!!! We have had new corporate training specialists join helping make Happening People the one stop shop for all your specialist corporate training needs.

“..Whilst I lead this great company I am also very operational because I love it...”

I am personally involved in the recruitment of our specialists and proud to say they come with awesome practical corporate experience so are heavily focused on results.

JS Cabway is highlighted in this newsletter and you will meet others who join our team over the coming months.

After 2 years we said a sad goodbye to Vera Woods who has managed all our social media over the last two years. She has achieved results for us which many companies could only dream. Building up our fans to 50,000 on Facebook setting up our new direct marketing campaigns just to name a couple of awesome results. Vera has left to focus on own new business adventure in Brisbane.

In addition to our corporate training I presented an address to Human Resource Management @ Work group on what it means to be an internal consultant. It was a pleasure presenting to a group of people who are focused on being better at what they do.

I have noticed a big spike in the demand for our Executive Coaching services. It makes me happy when senior people decide to take responsibility to be more effective because they can have such great influence in an organisation.

Again I thank all of our clients for making the decision to engage with us and give a very warm welcome to one of our new clients Peters Meats. I am very proud to say this is a company Alison Goode has purchased. Alison has worked with Happening People on and off over the past 14 years and is my confidant, right hand person and on line manager. I am delighted that she has chosen to stay with us in her new role. I guess what also makes me proud is Alison (who knows this company better than anyone – me too in some cases) made the decision to use us for their change program of 36 retail outlets – she knows how we work and we get results.

Whilst I lead this great company I am also very operational because I love it. So if you like what we do please tell others and not I’m always happy for your feedback.


Meet Some of Our Team

Below are some of our corporate training team who specialise is the areas of Leadership, Management, Sales development and more.
Click on their name to link through to our website and find out more.

C:\Happening People\photos\2012 Sam Day\12_1.jpg Happeing People - Tina Monk http://www.happeningpeople.com/images/Virginia%20Morris_profile_pic_1.JPG

Sam Day
Leadership, Management and Sales Specialist

Tina Monk
Specialising in Executive Coaching

Virginia Morris
Philanthropic Leadership Specialist (HK)

happrning People Morgan Stephens C:\Users\Samuel Day\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\Temporary Internet Files\Content.Outlook\A7V9AXRD\Henry Botha Photo 2011.jpg Happening People Dave Contarini

Layne Beachley
Keynote Leadership Specialist

Henry Botha
Finance for Non Finance Manager Specialist

JS Cabway
Cross Cultural Leadership



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