16 - 18 May, 2016 | Shangri La Hotel Sydney,
New South Wales, Australia

Plenary Conference Day 1

08:30 - 09:00 Registration and Morning Coffee


Carol Pedersen

Executive Assistant to Chief Executive Officer
PSMA Australia Limited

09:10 - 09:50 Breaking through in a Boys Own Culture

Suzanne Young - Chief Operating Officer, NRL
Working for the National Rugby League (NRL) is not a job for the faint-hearted. Like a lot of football codes it’s been a boys’ club, at times tarnished by alcohol, sex and drugs scandals that have ruined playing careers and sent sponsors investing their money elsewhere.

Suzanne grew up on a farm, striding the paddocks with her father and grandfather, and her sporting pedigree saw her named Australian Surf Lifesaver of the Year in 1996. The resilience demanded by the rigours of that sport has prepared her for tough board meetings, players behaving badly and the ensuing battles with the media.

In this session Suzanne will explore the leadership skills you need to develop to operate and lead in any organisation to ensure you get the best out of all of the stakeholders you work with.


Suzanne Young

Chief Operating Officer

09:50 - 10:50 I Am Captain of My Ship

Mark Maguire - Director, I am Captain of my Ship
For people interested in self-leadership, desiring to impact the world around them

The strategies behind better observation, balance and direction to begin reclaiming back your ship from the mutinies in your head and the pirates, which cause fear and poor decision-making. This is about self-leadership. This is about finding a way and navigating a better course for you from problem to solution. You will be able to relate this knowledge to any area of your business and personal life.


Mark Maguire

I am Captain of my Ship

10:50 - 11:40 Speed Networking and Morning Coffee

11:40 - 12:20 What makes an Award Winning PA?

Larissa Auditore - Executive Assistant to the CEO, iCare Insurance
Larissa is the winner of the 2014 Executive PA Magazine ‘PA of the Year Award’. She is an accomplished Executive Assistant with 15 years experience in the financial services and legal industries. She believes that Executive Assistants who see their role as a partnership are often in the best position to broaden their skills and grow their career.

  • Having the right attitude and approach
  • Understanding the goals of the business and the ‘big rocks’ of your executive
  • Seeing your role as a partnership
  • Being the best you can be
  • How we can promote our industry and attract talent to it

Larissa Auditore

Executive Assistant to the CEO
iCare Insurance

How resilient we are in the midst of challenges is closely connected to the beliefs we hold, both consciously and unconsciously. Certain beliefs can be enabling and empowering whilst others can be disabling and distressing. This interactive session will include:

  • An exploration some of the beliefs you hold about your role and how they serve or limit you
  • 3 key beliefs that create ease in any context
  • How you can bring your unconscious beliefs to your awareness so that you can change them


Divya Hemnani

Brain Trainer & Founder
Intrinsic Brilliance Institute

13:00 - 14:00 Lunch and Networking Break

14:00 - 15:00 Dealing with Different People: Red, Yellow, Green, Blue

Anthony Bonnici - Director, Move Mountains Pty Ltd
Ever wondered why you get on famously with some people and simply can't stand others?
Does it sometimes feel like others disagree with you just to spite you?
Want to know how to better communicate, influence and get along with people who are just not like you?

Anthony will help you do all of this by focussing on an easy-to-use personality profiling tool that you can implement broadly. It will help you:

  • Communicate more effectively
  • Influence more broadly
  • Reduce conflict and misunderstanding in the workplace (and at home!)


Anthony Bonnici

Move Mountains Pty Ltd

15:00 - 16:00 Presentation Skills: Encouraging Confidence, Courage and Skill

Sarah Meijer - Director, Confident Communicating
As an EA or PA you are required to communicate with colleagues from all levels of your organisation, from the CEO down. The ability to communicate clearly and effectively is an essential skill and can be the difference between success and failure in your role. As a business partner to your boss, you need the ability to engage and build relationships with internal and external stakeholders and be able to present a clear, well-articulated point of view in a convincing manner in a number of scenarios.

In this session Sarah will help you ‘Find Your Voice’ whether that be in the office, during business meetings or presenting in front of a larger audience. The session will cover aspects such as …

  • Presenting Yourself with Confidence
  • Developing impacting vocal skills
  • The importance of non-verbal communication
  • Considering content
  • 360 degree communications
  • Building effective relationships with stakeholders


Sarah Meijer

Confident Communicating

16:00 - 16:30 Afternoon Tea and Networking

The Champagne Roundtables are an opportunity for you to participate in 3 facilitator lead discussions on different topics, exchange your experiences and challenges and develop solutions with your peers over a glass of bubbly. We have some great experts facilitating the roundtables but it’s worth remembering that sometimes the solutions to your work challenges can come from your fellow delegates!

Roundtable themes:

Roundtable A: Is Multi-Tasking a Myth?

Are you really being as effective and efficient as you're capable of? If you describe yourself as a great multi-tasker, it's likely that you aren't... Join Brain Trainer Divya Hemnani as she reveals the neuroscience behind peak performance. In this session you will experience:

  • How your brain is a parallel processor
  • How you can "overwhelm" your system
  • How you can reset your system with simple practices

Facilitator: Divya Hemnani, Brain Trainer & Founder, Intrinsic Brilliance Institute

Roundtable B: Effective Minute Taking in Meetings

Are you new to writing meeting minutes or are interested in some tips to improve your efficiency? Then this roundtable is for you.

  • Pre-planning
  • What should be included?
  • The minutes writing process

Facilitator: Mario Halouvas, National Training and Development Manager, Priority Management

Roundtable C: Disarm the Bomb – Resolving Conflict

Using the analogy of war, we explore how conflict can destroy working relationships, productivity and motivation in the workplace. You will learn how to disengage conflict by starting with the only real thing you truly control — yourselves.

Facilitator: Anthony Bonnici, Director, Move Mountains

Roundtable D: Procrastination: The 5 Habits of Procrastination and How to Control Them

Everybody procrastinates, but the most productive people learn how to control it. In this session you will understand the psychology of procrastination and 5 ways to break the habit.

Facilitator: Faye Hampton, Success Coach

Roundtable E: Stop Being a People Pleaser: Learn to Say ‘No’ More Often

At work it’s easy to say ‘yes’ especially if you are a people pleaser. But how is this affecting your overall productivity if you’re not learning to say ‘no’. If you work for more than one boss or in an office where you are perceived as the go-to person for every minor task then it’s about time you learned to say ‘no’ more often. You’ll be amazed at how much this will improve your productivity.

Facilitator: Larissa Auditore, Executive Assistant to the CEO, iCare Insurance


Anthony Bonnici

Move Mountains Pty Ltd


Mario Halouvas

National Training & Development Manager
Priority Management


Larissa Auditore

Executive Assistant to the CEO
iCare Insurance


Divya Hemnani

Brain Trainer & Founder
Intrinsic Brilliance Institute


Faye Hampton

Success Coach
Live Your Fulfilment

17:30 - 18:30 Improvise, Adapt & Overcome

Paul de Gelder - Navy Diver, Shark Attack Survivor, Author
From rebel and strip club worker to adventurer, soldier, fitness enthusiast, Navy Clearance Diver, author and mentor to schoolkids across Australia, Paul de Gelder is an exceptional young man. Losing two limbs in an attack by a bull shark while on a Navy training mission in Sydney Harbour, Paul speaks of his incredible motivation and fortitude in coming to grips with his new life and how the attack led him on his current life path to motivate and inspire people across the globe.

Paul now dedicates his time to public speaking and charity work and working to save sharks globally as he shares his infectious love for life and inspiring words of wisdom with people of all ages and professions. Speaking in locations as diverse as the United Nations and outback schools, his story is one of a true survivor and an incredible inspiration.


Paul de Gelder

Navy Diver
Shark Attack Survivor, Author

18:30 - 19:30 Close of Day and Networking Drinks Reception