(Press Release) Volkswagen and Dyer Island Conservation Trust turn on the lights of Joburg’s first lighthouse

Picture1To create awareness for the conservation efforts of the Dyer Island Conservation Trust, Volkswagen brought the ocean to Joburg and created the Dyer Island Inland Lighthouse – Joburg’s first lighthouse.

Sneak peeks 002 med_previewWhile lighthouses traditionally face out to sea, warning sailors of approaching land, Volkswagen created the Dyer Island Inland Lighthouse facing in the opposite direction to enlighten South Africans of the dangers of plastic waste to our oceans and its creatures.

The symbolic lighthouse is built using recycled plastic bottles, creating a spectacular light installation and goes up in The Zone @Rosebank from 30 November until 3 December 2017. The purpose of the installation is to educate South Africans about the importance of conservation efforts focused on our fragile marine eco-system, just before Joburgers flock to the beaches for the Festive Season. Not only that, the lighthouse also rewards visitors who drop plastic bottles or waste into our recycling bin by shining its lights brightly in gratitude.

The interactive installation also encourages passers by to take a brave stand against plastic waste by taking a picture in the plastic-waste created Jellyfish Insta-booth and sharing these on social media as a commitment to our oceans. For those wanting to dive right in and support the cause – and take home a token – they can donate towards the trust at the craft table. Here local crafters turn trash into treasure by creating the marine icons of Dyer Island, like penguins and sharks, out of the very material putting their futures in danger.

Sneak peeks 046 med_previewTo spark conversation on social media, Volkswagen are also asking SA to share their wishes for the world by using #VWWishForTheWorld. “Volkswagen’s wish for the world is to be at the forefront of creating a more sustainable future and we are humbled to work with passionate partners like the Dyer Island Conservation Trust who help us make this wish come true,” commented Meredith Kelly, Head of Marketing at Volkswagen South Africa, partners and supporters of Dyer Island and the ocean’s future.

Individually we are one drop, together we are an ocean – Ryunosuke Satoro

The Lighthouse will be at The Zone in Rosebank Mall from Thursday 30 November – Sunday 3 December.

 For more information on the Dyer Island Conservation Trust, read here: https://www.dict.org.za


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(Press Release) National #LeadershipStandards Journey to be launched to develop and guide South African Leaders

Screen Shot 2017-09-04 at 5.12.12 PMJohannesburg, 4 September 2017 South Africa is calling for leaders who can share, develop and create the change they want to see, but people seldom know exactly which qualities their leaders should have.

A standard for leadership journey will therefore start in September 2017 to create a framework with a clear standard on what is acceptable and unacceptable leadership behaviour, says Marius Meyer, CEO of the SA Board for People Practices (SABPP).

“Leadership fulfills a pivotal role in the economic future of the country and the right leadership in all spheres of society can create the kind of country we want. If we want to change leadership, we must create dynamic leaders who can unlock and develop South Africa’s talent to improve performance in all economic and social areas,” Meyer says.

The SABPP in partnership with Talent Talks and Wits Enterprise will hold two National Leadership Standard Journey events, with the aim to draft a leadership standard framework that can be used to guide and develop South African leaders.

As part of the journey, stakeholders will debate their role in the leadership landscape, while it will also create a powerful platform to motivate people in business and government to take action. The first event will take place in Johannesburg on 14 September 2017, where participants will discuss the five elements of leadership.

“The standard will create a picture of the key elements of leadership to guide leaders in their thinking and actions as they lead their organisations and people. It will show leaders in simple terms what is expected of them and form the basis of understanding current failures of leadership in many sectors. We want to move away from appointing leaders without leadership skills to encouraging good leadership behaviour and practices,” Meyer explains.

The issues of vision, ethics, governance, responsibility, accountability, purpose, trust, decision-making and influence will be included in the standard. The leadership standard journey will continue until pockets of excellence are replicated to multiply leadership success stories. A leadership network will also be formed to ensure that leaders are supported by their peers and leadership experts.

The standard will be developed in a collaborative manner on 14 September and formally
launched at the 5th Annual HR Standards conference on 26 October.

Further people management standards will be developed in 2018 to support the leadership standard and guide all managers to become better managers of people and unlock the potential of their people and organisations.

  • The first full-day event will be held at the Theatre on the Track, Kyalami, on 14 September 2017 followed by a second on 26 October 2017. The event will feature
    powerful speakers and a special leadership panel representing top professional bodies.
  • For more details and to register for the event visit www.talenttalks.net

Issued on behalf of Leadership Standard Journey
For more information contact:
Lunice Johnston Communication
Lunice Johnston
Mobile : +27 82 824 6384
Email: lunice@lunice.co.za

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Some tips for travelling to Sunny South Africa

Do you know what a Braai is? Find out in this article.

The Lost Executive

Businesses and business people in South Africa have an energy that you will not see anywhere else in the world. Without sounding too political, the business men and women in the country have learned that if they want to get ahead they need to do so inspite of those in charge of running the country. Therefore, they have an approach to business which is refreshing and direct. Here are some tips from an expat Durban Boy about business in SA.

  1. Meeting at a braai is completely allowed especially for big business. People are busy during working hours, especially South Africans who are famous for getting in and working tirelessly. Take the meeting outside. South Africa is blessed with so many natural places of interest and beautiful scenery and a genuine love for outdoor braais (barbecues) and beer that it sets a perfect icebreaking scenario. (also South African’s love an excuse…

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(Press Release) Fresh, friendly, ultra-stylish Italian opens in Sandton

Issued on behalf of:  Martin Louw, Septimo, 083 974 4120
By: Inky Dresner, Colourworks, 083 2977981; inky@soapbox.co.za

On the 7th of the 7th of 2017 – Septimo (meaning ‘seventh’) opened on the Square

Looking for a contemporary, vibey venue that feels approachable and serves great food? You’ll find it on Sandton Square from Friday, July 7, when a very friendly and stylish Italian restaurant opened its magnificent doors.

US-based businessmen Andreas Kaiafas and Paul Lycos teamed up with South African restaurateur, Martin Louw, to bring an international-standard restaurant to Joburg – South Africa’s most cosmopolitan city. Paul literally grew up in his parents’ Italian restaurant in Philadelphia and Martin Louw has spent 20 years working in the top restaurants and hotels internationally and locally. The three restaurateurs make a formidable team.

Well-known architect, David Borchardt, brought their smart, modern vision to life. David used copper and stained concrete to craft an on-trend, industrial-look-and-feel, then ingeniously added layers of sophisticated wood to softened the space, adding elements of friendliness and warmth to the modern atmosphere. The popular brother-and-sister team, Mike and Rita Collaro, from Collaro Design, expertly added the furniture and fixtures. The result is an industrial-yet-soft feast for the eyes that would be at home in the trendiest Milano neighbourhood.

The fresh, seasonal cuisine is prepared by chef Nikita Zoulis, with his outstanding ability to transform ideas into incredible food. They have kept their delicious menu small, concentrating instead on seasonal and sustainable produce. Most of the food can be traced directly back to the source, literally to the farm the meat came from, or the boat the fish was caught on.

Septimo is a multi-purpose space, offering a New York-style Italian deli; a chef’s table – the best place to view the theatre that is the open kitchen; and daily fresh bread to entice the senses. There is also an uber sexy bar with deliciously soft lighting that makes everyone look gorgeous.

Sit on the patio, people-watching over the square, while you enjoy a long, lazy lunch. Or sit inside with friends and family enjoying each other’s company in the great atmosphere. Septimo offers something for everyone. If you only have time for an on-the-go sandwich, they’ll make you one; if you want a quick thin-crust pizza, they’ll give you that too. If you have more time to enjoy the stunning space, sit and be delighted by the fantastic homemade pasta and the most divine ‘sin free’ flourless chocolate torte.




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History is Made: Bitcoin Prices Top $2,000 to Set New All-Time High http://bit.ly/2pWUpjP via @CoinDesk

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Comfort Zones are not comfortable

Screen Shot 2017-04-26 at 11.11.07 AMOur comfort zones are where we deceive ourselves, and in our comfort zones nothing grows. Comfort zones are free of criticism, challenges and anything that will actually stretch us. We can only grow when we are challenged, criticized and experience some pain so that we force ourselves to say … I know there is something better for me.

The comfort zone is often the place people desire to be. However more often than not they use the perceived comfort zone as an excuse. People say “I will focus on that when my current challenge is past”, or if they are not so introspective, they will simply say that the time is not right. So when will the time be right? Well, that would be  when they find themselves in a comfort zone, and then as you may have guessed we are so comfortable in our own self-deception that we will never make a decision to actually focus on something worth focusing on. There is really no need as they have decided to believe their own self-deception.

Comfort zones are not comfortable, yet we would like to believe they are. Self-deception is when we believe the lies we tell ourselves. The only way to grow is to be honest, ask yourself the following critical questions daily:

  1. How did I grow today?
  2. Did I make a difference in someone’s life today?
  3. What did I do today that scared me?
  4. Will something that I did today contribute to my future success?
  5. Was I open and honest with myself today?
  6. Was I open to criticism so that I may grow?
  7. Did I choose to be kind, instead of being right today?

Each day we are faced with a choice, either to stagnate or grow. I do hope that we can all make a decision to grow daily as we will become better partners, parents, friends and colleagues … The choice is yours.

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When is the best time to DISRUPT?

screen-shot-2017-01-25-at-12-01-37-amMany people think of disruption as destruction and it certainly can be. However, the real challenge is to ensure that the disruption we are about to introduce will be effective and achieve the results that you may be looking for: which could be to get the attention of the person or to change the way they observe and think about a situation.

Is there a perfect time or when is the best time to disrupt?

Disruption is effective when we know the audience we are dealing with or a least have some idea of who they are and what they are looking for. Thus we would need to know what they are looking for and firstly attend to their needs. If they have found what they are looking for they are more likely to be open to the idea that your disruption will bring. This need may be as simple as recognition or somewhat complex as a question they may be seeking an answer to. If you disregard the person’s need or the need that a group of people may have, your disruption may be seen as destructive.

Regardless of the situation, leadership is always required and that leadership is serving the needs of people. Yes, the disruption that you intend bringing may ultimately help people as change could be necessary, but if you don’t give them what they are looking for, chances are you may be seen as someone who is selfish and who only wants to manipulate the situation for your own gain.

When we are able to understand people and their needs, we can serve them better and the disruption we bring will be for the good of the person or the group we are engaging with and will seldom be seen as a selfish act.

Photo credit: Nebojsa Mladjenovic via Foter.com / CC BY-NC-ND
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What if?

gratitudeThe title is a question and a seemingly simple question too. What if you … yes, think of a question applicable to you that starts with ‘What if ..’

My thoughts were exactly this and I will share my perspective and findings in this article.

What if my life in 5 years is the same as it is today? Would I be able to say I am happy, would I be content to accept the status quo or would I be sad that I had not done more to change the course of my life?  Perhaps I will ask myself if I have lost my ability to challenge myself or will I have done something that my future self will thank me for?

What if I accomplish my dreams? Will I be happier or will I perhaps be sad, disappointed in myself for allowing myself to stop dreaming and not setting more goals for myself?

What if I am unable to dream anymore? Would I search fervently until I find the ability to dream and rediscover the youthful me? Would I still have a burning desire to travel and discover new places, new people and taste the food of the world? Perhaps I will resign myself to a small group of insignificant and uninspiring people. Would I be able to pick myself up if I was down or would I expect others to do that for me? Could I justify the fact that I would blame them for my lack of fulfilment and happiness in life?

The above are questions that many people ask themselves when they feel life is squeezing them a little harder than they expected. Perhaps it is just life telling you that there is much more than you are experiencing right now, and life is actually asking you to get out of the comfort zone we call ‘normal’.

What if all I need is to be truly grateful, will gratitude be enough? What if we are thankful for what we have, in fact when last did we all just take a moment to say THANK YOU and really mean it? Can we look at our lives and realise just how fortunate and blessed we actually are?

I believe we need to be grateful and express gratitude as often as possible, because I know that …

Gratitude will open doors in our lives that did not exist previously.

Our lives can be so different, we can choose a different path and see the results as we move along the path. Gratitude is not simply saying thank you, it is so much more and it is the very thing that builds belief for ourselves. By expressing our gratefulness, we remind ourselves of the good situation we find ourselves in, (even if at worst we compare our situation to the plight of the less fortunate) and this will enable us to gain the belief to see more good things happen in our lives.

Our gratitude opens doors … What if we just expressed our gratitude daily?

Photo credit: racineur via Foter.com / CC BY-NC-ND
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Introverts are the Disruptors

screen-shot-2017-01-11-at-9-05-36-pmI often try to find the most unlikely of titles for my articles, and this is the title that has truly disrupted my thinking.

How can the Introverts disrupt when they are so quiet you may ask? The answer is actually simple when you think about it, and that is exactly why the introverts hold the greatest disruptive power – they THINK!

To be a disruptor, you need to be able to think about what you think about, when you think – it is this thinking that causes people to ask different questions. The ideas that come from this type of thinking are disruptive, and they will ultimately produce the innovation so many companies are looking for.

However let me warn you, the noisy people in organisations (those without the ideas) will always make enough noise to ensure that the little quiet voices are never heard.

Photo credit: calliope_Muse via Foter.com / CC BY-NC-SA
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Disruptive Leadership

screen-shot-2017-01-10-at-12-05-08-pmPlease read this article carefully, at the very start I am emphasising that I am not talking about ‘DESTRUCTIVE’ but rather Disruptive Leadership.

Yesterday I met with a good friend, and he mentioned he had recently attended a leadership training workshop. During a discussion the facilitator asked for the audience to give the characteristics of good leaders. The normal things were mentioned like accountability, integrity, wisdom and empathy. Then my friend said a leader needs to be ‘Disruptive’ and the audience unanimously disagreed, however the facilitator asked that the audience explore the idea a little more.

Let’s open our minds now and try to unlearn what we think ‘disruption’ is. Why do many seem to think that disruption is destructive? Could it be the same type of thinking that says criticism should only be constructive? Why can’t we simply accept criticism, and are we not intelligent and resilient enough to decide what has value and what can be discarded? Let me state that disruption is productive and destruction is counter productive.

To simplify the process of Disruptive Leadership I have chosen to pose and answer a few questions:

How would you define a Disruptive Leader? I would define a disruptive leader as someone who is an independent thinker, able to think about what they think about and become known for the way they think differently. Leadership after all is about the example (actions) set by a person, that causes other to do things differently.

Why does a Leader need to Disrupt? Firstly they should be able to notice the status quo and challenge it, by asking questions that cause people to think differently. Questions asked differently, and answered with new thinking, are exactly what you want as the outcome of a disruptive process.

What is the most effective way for a Leader to Disrupt? When you are able to notice and understand the way people usually do things, which generally give a predictable outcome, then you are able to ask the questions which will challenge the norm.

Are people scared of the Disruptive process? Yes, people are scared of the disruptive process and usually resist it as they feel they will lose control. With disruption you are unable to predict or control the outcome, and therefore many avoid the creative process of such disruption. Unfortunately, without disruption, things can only stay the same and there will be no leadership.

What does the resistance to Disruption tell you about a Leader? If you resist any sort of disruptive process, you are actually resisting change. Without change, nothing can advance, and an organization cannot grow. To be extremely direct, a leader who dislikes disruption is a leader that is insecure, and who will soon be irrelevant.

Every day we should challenge ourselves by disrupting our own thinking, this is the only way we can ensure that we learn and grow. Leadership is about constant development. As soon as we think we know something, we start to realize just how little we actually do know.

Photo credit: Wesley Fryer via Foter.com / CC BY-SA
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