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

Plenary Conference Day 2

08:30 - 09:00 Morning Coffee and Networking

09:00 - 09:20 My Story: Living through the Hell of Domestic Violence

Rachel Lloyd -   Domestic Violence Survivor
In this session Rachel will share her domestic violence story and experiences with the aim of helping others facing similar situations. She will also discuss her experience with the different support services that she encountered once she made the decision to leave the family home with her young child and her thoughts on how the system can be improved to provide a more integrated response.

Rachel has lived through the hell of domestic abuse. She had the strength to fight it and break free and wants victims of domestic violence to know that there is a light at the end of the tunnel, there is hope and there is freedom.


Rachel Lloyd

Domestic Violence Survivor

09:20 - 10:00 Organising our Australasia Regional Forum: The Most Challenging but Rewarding Part of My Role

Denise Keen - Executive Assistant to CEO/Chair Arup Australasia
Denise joined Arup as EA to the CEO/Chair of the Australasia Region in 2004, and looking for an additional challenge, put her hand up to organise their Australasia Region Forum every two years. The forum brings together 120 of Arups most talented high level leaders to drive the strategic direction of the company, share knowledge, celebrate success and progress, and to network.

  • Where to begin!
  • Forming OUR Team
  • Logistics and Content | both are KEY components for success
  • The Perfect Venue
  • Reaching for Excellence | allowing others to excel
  • Inside the Forum bubble
  • Celebrating
  • Key Learnings


Denise Keen

Executive Assistant to CEO/Chair
Arup Australasia

10:00 - 11:00 Interactive Workshop Session: Speak Up and Influence People

Michelle Bowden - Director Michelle Bowden Enterprises
If you’ve ever thought you’d like to improve the way you communicate with the people around you so your relationships become easier…

  • If you’ve ever thought there must be a way to get people on side so they agree with your ideas or sign-off your proposal…
  • If you’ve ever laid in bed awake at night worrying yourself silly because you just don’t know the best way to say that important thing to your boss, partner, friend or client…
  • If you just want to hear the word “yes” more often in your life, fast track your sales cycle or manage your people more respectfully…you’ll love this session with Michelle Bowden - Austraia's persuasion expert!
  • We persuade and influence people every day of our lives. Sometimes we win. Sometimes we lose. Want to win more?

Speak Up and Influence People is a high energy, research-based, interactive session that shows you how to transform yourself into a more persuasive communicator at work, at home, all the time, no matter the circumstances.

You will laugh, learn and most importantly you will demonstrate an immediate behavioural change.


Michelle Bowden

Michelle Bowden Enterprises

11:00 - 11:30 Morning Coffee and Networking

11:30 - 12:30 Adopt Positive Problem Solving Strategies, Overcome Complicated Issues & Massively Improve your Effectiveness

Jim O'Connor - Director Jim O’Connor Elite Performance
  • Poor problem solving strategies are one of the biggest drags on personal and business performance.
  • In this session you will be introduced to the science, the principles and strategies of positive problem solving.
  • Learn how to become more confident overcoming difficult challenges more easily
  • Build your reputation within your organisation for being a highly effective person by being a superior problem solver
  • Improve your businesses performance & deliver superior results by adopting a positive problem solving framework.


Jim O'Connor

Jim O’Connor Elite Performance

12:30 - 13:30 Emotional Intelligence: Understanding Yourself, Others, and Having Self Awareness is the Key to Building and Maintaining Relationships

Wendy Jocum - Director Wendy Jocum Training and Coaching
The ability to identify emotions in ourselves and others, and to express and manage these emotions appropriately, is essential for interpersonal communication. EI is vital to personal and professional success, enabling us to build effective relationships with our internal and external stakeholders. It is also about understanding the impact of our emotions on our thoughts, decisions and actions.

In this session Wendy will help you develop your awareness and practical strategies for enhancing your people skills, connecting with others, building trust and rapport, while managing yourself, and your relationships with others. You will be given the tools to enhance your ability to recognise and appropriately respond to both yours and others’ emotions

By being emotionally intelligent, you are able to improve your communication, relationships, teamwork, leadership, employee/customer engagement and performance.

  • Understanding emotions and drivers of behaviour
  • Emotional regulation techniques to manage your emotions and respond appropriately
  • Emotional resilience and agility
  • Perceiving emotions accurately in others to build empathy and rapport
  • EI competencies of self-awareness, self-regulation, motivation, empathy and interpersonal skills
  • Links to neuroscience, positive psychology and brain based leadership

Wendy Jocum

Wendy Jocum Training and Coaching

13:30 - 14:30 Lunch and Networking Break

Learn quicker ways to manage your workload through some efficient shortcuts using Microsoft’s most powerful programs - Outlook and OneNote. Mario will take you on a journey of shortcuts that will get you to your destination within seconds and allow you to focus more and improve your productivity. Unlocking the power and efficiency of your technology is only a few clicks away.

  • Find out the benefits of using shortcuts and increase your efficiency
  • Discover the power of Quicksteps to automate processes within Outlook
  • Utilise shortcuts in OneNote link to Outlook
  • Manage Quickparts to quickly insert repetitive information into emails, appointments and tasks
  • Maximise your diary management through shortcuts

Mario Halouvas

National Training & Development Manager
Priority Management

15:30 - 16:10 Digital Disruption and the EA/PA Role in the New Tech Enabled Office of 2020 and Beyond

Mathew Dickerson - Mayor Mayor of Dubbo
The integration of new technologies in the workplace will have an immense effect on the EA/PA role. Innovation will create new and better roles with increased job satisfaction and improved operational efficiency, but how will this impact you and what are the skills you need to acquire in the tech enabled office of 2020 and beyond?

In this session Mathew will explore our work futures, the technologies that will enable increased efficiency and the plans you need to put in place to ensure that you can thrive and survive in the new digital workplace.

Mathew Dickerson

Mayor of Dubbo

16:10 - 16:25 Convenience Break

The High Tea 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 a selection of sweet treats.

Roundtable themes:

Roundtable A: The Working Relationship/Partnership with Your Boss

  • Understanding your style and the style of your CEO | Chair | Board of Directors
  • Fitting your way of working to your Boss and making it work
  • Understanding their needs (it’s not about you)
  • Relationships based on trust (from the Chairman of the Board to the cleaners and security guards)
  • Doing more – picking up tasks and projects and making them your own

Facilitator: Denise Keen, Executive Assistant to the CEO/Chair, Arup Australasia

Roundtable B: Tame your Technology and Switch Off

In our fast paced workplace and reliance on technology, many people find it hard to switch off and allow themselves to recharge. Explore ways of taking control of your technology and working through your technology not because of it. Reduce your stress levels with some handy tips on managing your workplace technology as well as your mobile devices whilst still keeping on top of your workload.

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

Roundtable C: Communication Skills

Explore ways to influence and Communicate with others, even in challenging situations.

Facilitator: Wendy Jocum, Director, Wendy Jocum Training and Coaching

Roundtable D: The Challenges Faced by EAs and PAs in their Constantly Changing Roles.

Facilitator: Tania Rizoski, Personal Assistant, Arup Pty Ltd

Roundtable E: Career Progression and Utilising your Current Skills to Adapt to a New Role

From Virgin Australia Cabin Crew to PA to two GM’s within the corporate office, Nic discusses career change and utilising your skills to adapt to a new role.

Nic Russ, Personal Assistant to GM, Brand & Marketing and GM, Distribution & E-Commerce, Virgin Australia


Mario Halouvas

National Training & Development Manager
Priority Management


Wendy Jocum

Wendy Jocum Training and Coaching


Denise Keen

Executive Assistant to CEO/Chair
Arup Australasia


Tania Rizoski

Executive Assistant to Chief Executive Officer
Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia (ASFA)


Nic Russ

PA to GM Brand and Marketing and Distribution and e-Commerce
Virgin Australia

17:25 - 23:59 Closing Remarks from the Chair