Speakers Arena

Three fantastic Speakers Arenas featuring inspiring stories by six local high profile leaders in TEDx style format. Please select ONE two-speaker Arena to attend on the day. But not to worry you won’t miss out! For this special 10th anniversary convention we will be running 3 Acumen Fringe events (please see Acumen Fringe Page for details).

Optimus Arena

Tom Druitt
The Big Lemon

What is luck and how do we get lucky in business?
Is luck down to chance, or do we make it ourselves? Is it an attitude, a frame of mind, or something more tangible? Are positive people actually luckier or do they just think they are? And how do we make ourselves lucky? Tom believes that we become lucky when four things come together: attitude, intuition, courage and circumstance. In this light-hearted talk, Tom will share how luck has played a major role in his life, and what he has learned about it along the way.

Janet Gordon
Bluestarfish Consulting

How can you stay relevant in the next ten years?
What’s the best way to stay relevant, unique and valuable to your clients or organisation in the next ten years? The answer to this might surprise you. It’s not necessarily AI programming or hard skills. According to the latest LinkedIn data, it’s empathy & emotional intelligence that will be centre stage in the business world. Come and hear Janet Gordon talk about the power of the simple question in building your network, empathy skills and developing your leadership skills for the 21st Century.

Janet started Bluestarfish Consulting in 2005 and works globally with leaders to develop their people skills, gravitas and impact.

Stellar Arena

Anthony Prior

In it for the long game
Anthony has spent the last 20 years treading the fine line between creative freedom, commercial reality and personal endurance for the long game. Through music festivals, competitive retail F&B business & ultra endurance sport Anthony has learnt some perspectives and techniques for survival. Anthony will talk about how work culture he learnt in the creative industries informed the culture he established in Bagelman, how running ultra marathons taught him about the benefits of creating value for all stakeholders and how building your personal values in to your business & products can make selling them a rewarding experience.

Sarah Rudder
Ginger Dog Development

Leaning into the Bends – a journey into mental toughness
Life can be tough. It has ups and downs and some pretty tight bends. Mental toughness enables us to navigate those bends with greater skill and resourcefulness. It’s not about being fearless in the face of challenge and setback but learning to lean in, to overcome the overwhelm, to be daunted but not defeated.

Specialist in mental toughness and Ginger Dog Development founder Sarah Rudder is curious about how we self-sabotage, the stories we tell ourselves and whether it’s true that what doesn’t kill us makes us stronger.

She’ll talk about fear, failure and falling off motorbikes while sharing some techniques for developing your own mental strength.

Zenith Arena

Nigel Lambe
Bold Decisions

Why the best business leaders are the ones who ask for most help?
In 10 years as an Entrepreneur, CEO Mentor and Non-Executive Director Nigel has frequently noticed that business leaders who exude confidence and industry knowledge are frequently very weak at delivering long term sustainable profits – and the less overtly confident leaders who continually seek external guidance deliver better long term results.

Nigel will share thoughts on how and why leaders should always seek external help to reinvent themselves and their business strategy if they want to thrive in an ever changing world.

Neil Laughton
Laughton & Co

Business strategy simplified

After a succession of depressing, distressing & dangerous outcomes following the adoption of long, detailed and complicated strategies.

Neil found the answer to creating successful business strategies whilst climbing Mt Everest! Join him for this session to find out the secret.”

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