Work Life By Design Podcast
Work Life by Design will inspire you with stories of transformation, explore everything from organisational psychology to brand and identify opportunities that exist in your workplace environment to inspire human potential.
As a passionate entrepreneur with a desire to create places where both people and business thrive my desire is to inspire you to find your place at work and in life.
Whether you are an entrepreneur, an executive leader or passionate about people and their experience of work, this podcast will give you a dose of inspiration on how you can shake up your 9 to 5.
Designing a Work Life you Love!
Welcome to Season 3!
This season I want to dive deep into what this podcast says on the tin; designing a work life that you truly LOVE.
Today, I’m going to tell you a bit about my story; how I ended up here, including the parts where I blew up my life on purpose and how I searched high and low for my true purpose and the meaning of a life truly authentic to me. I’m talking self-help books, philosophical paradigms, conferences and retreats, life coaches; you name it, I did it.
This journey over the past 10 years has led me to explore various tools, frameworks and ideologies around people, culture, leadership and business, that have supported me to design this work life that I love and this is what I’ll be sharing with you with the help of some incredible guests!
Season 2 Wrap Up
Is the office dead? Does productivity come at the expense of wellbeing? How do you manage Zoom fatigue? How do you maintain connection in a remote workplace?!
It’s been a huge season of Work Life By Design as we’ve explored all the big questions around what the future of work looks like after the impact of COVID.
We’ve had some incredible guests from a wide range of backgrounds and industries all with different ideas on how to navigate the future of work and manage the expectations of their people with the bottom line of the business.
Why Your Workplace Doesn’t Work!
It may be beautiful but it just doesn't work....
There many reasons why your workplace doesn't work; layout, lack of understanding, doing what you’ve always done. Often clients underestimate the impact of interrogating their brief. It’s common for them to approach a designer or a builder with a wish list, layout and design in mind and the builder complies.
But there is so much more to it.
This week I discuss:
- Why offices just don’t work, even if they look amazing
- The essential things you need to consider when designing a workplace
- The foundations of a workplace strategy
- Why that workplace strategy is crucial to commercial success
Technology: Enhancing our Experience of Work
Take a moment and think back to the beginning of 2020. How has your interaction and use of technology changed?
I would hazard a guess that at the start of 2020, you rarely worked from home, you may have done the occasional Zoom call [if you even knew what zoom was] and there was no way you would have entertained presenting to a client on it. All your team meetings were done in person.
Life looks pretty different right now.
Today’s guest is Cameron Douglas, the newly appointed CEO of Videopro. Cameron has been a long standing employee of Videopro who has worked his way to the top and is now proudly leading the organisation into an exciting new technology enabled world.
Are We Just Creating Digital Silos?
Communication with our immediate teams has increased with the move to remote working styles, however interactions outside our team or with distant networks has significantly diminished.
We’ve been able to increase our productivity, but our hybrid communication structures, water cooler conversations, impromptu brainstorming sessions and incidental interactions have been lost. So, have we created digital silos, or as I call it, the cubicle of 2021?
In today’s episode, I look at how the rise of digital communication has impacted us and how to tackle the delicate balance between digital overload and digital silos.
Managing Cognitive Overload with The Third Space with Dr Adam Fraser
The ability to transition from one event to another has a significant impact on how we show up in those spaces. The mindset and mental state that we approach each task, activity, conversation or moment with ultimately defines how that situation turns out.
As more of us are continuing to work from home or engage in a hybrid work style, the conscious awareness that we know need to bring to these moments has become increasingly important.
So, who better to chat to about the impact of these moments than Dr Adam Fraser; researcher, speaker and the author of “The Third Space” just one of his four best selling books.
Feeling Overwhelmed and Exhausted? You’re Not Alone...
Feeling overwhelmed and exhausted. It’s the big conversation at the moment. I’m seeing it in the people I’m coaching, the people I’m connecting with and I’m hearing it from colleagues in the industry.
It seems that many of us that are feeling this way - and turns out there is a LOT of data that explains why.
Research shows we’ve been working longer hours during COVID, but to me, this doesn’t seem like anything new because certain industries and professions have always carried these expectations.
Can we design work 'Choose Your Own Adventure' style? with Dr Meg Hooper
Today I’m joined by Dr Meg Hooper, Organisational Psychologist and change specialist. Meg is a registered psychologist with a PhD in organisational psychology and she brings an academic thought process to a very similar world that I tend to work in.
So the context of what we discussed today is around what can be described as ‘Choose Your Own Adventure’; how can we enable, support and empower our people to determine how and where they work and within the predefined parameters of the organisational culture and policies?
We also discuss:
- What is organisational psychology?
- Individual resilience vs team resilience
- The importance of boundaries in the workplace
- Understanding practical elements of cross-functional collaboration
It's all about the Chemistry
In today’s episode, I delve into the relationship between clients and designers and why a fundamental connection is essential for success.
This is a topic I’m incredibly passionate about and one of our core values at COMUNiTI is "it's all about the Chemistry". Essentially, that means we seek to work with people we gel with; people who get us, what we do and how we do it. We've been tested on these a few times and we've had to make some tough calls, but I’ve learned that trying to make chemistry work on a job is far harder.
I’ll touch on:
- Why chemistry is crucial
- The difference between negative and positive conflict
- Communication breakdowns
- Outcomes and relationships
- What you as a client should look for when selecting a team to work with
- Communicating your unique chemistry - the experience of doing business with you.
Shaping Work Lives with Kursty Groves
As Australians we have been relatively insulated from the impact of COVID unlike the rest of the world, so as part of this season and understand the future of work, I was keen to understand what “work life” looks like on the other side of the globe.
In today’s episode I chat with Kursty Groves a workplace strategist and innovation consultant based in the UK. Kursty helps workplace leaders reinvent the future of work and spaces that support connected cultures. With a background in innovation consulting, capability development and design, Kursty’s approach to workplace is grounded in coaching and co-creation, putting people at the heart.
I feel very privileged to have been able to have this conversation with Kursty, to understand her perspective as a fellow workplace strategist and advisor to some of the worlds largest brands.
How Persona Profiling Shapes your Workplace
When we talk about persona profiling, we usually think of psychometric testing and other sorts of personality profiling tests. In the workplace, we generally use these in the context of recruitment and understanding a candidate’s personality before we hire them to understand if they are a cultural fit for our organisation.
What you may not have thought of is personality profiling is incredibly useful from a workplace design perspective. Understanding personal preferences of teams, and individuals within those teams allows us to design a workplace that aligns with different ways of working.
Join me as a break down how we can use persona profiling to make workplace design intelligent.
Making Work Absolutely Human with Rhonda Brighton-Hall
Work is an incredibly important aspect to the lives of many of us and finding a workplace that enables us to thrive and to contribute forms a large part of our personal feeling of purpose and of belonging.
Rhonda Brighton- Hall is CEO of mwah. Making Work Absolutely Human, Chair of the AHRI Institute, National D&I Advisory Panel, a Patron for ASPECT (Autism Australia) and recognised as a game changer in the future design of organisations, HR, leadership, diversity and inclusion and work.
The Real Cost of a Fitted Out Workplace
Taking over the lease on a fitted-out workplace to support your organisational growth can make sense on paper however, I often see the intangible costs of this decision realised down the line.
In this episode I’ll share with you how these intangible costs show up and the impact on the performance of your business and how you can begin to build the capability internally to transform your business.
Decoding Tomorrow: A futurist perspective
Today’s guest is Futurist and Founder of the think tank and trend analysis firm, Thinque, Anders Sorman-Nilsson. Working with clients such as Microsoft, Apple, Facebook and McKinsey to name a few, Anders is an awarded keynote speaker, author and the host of the 2nd Renaissance Podcast.
Through our conversation today we explore the role of the futurist in supporting organisations to navigate the future, the blend of the physical and virtual work environment and more.
5 Levels of Workplace Autonomy: Reimagining Remote Work
There has been much discussion about what the future of work will look like and the decisions that some organisations have already taken, and some at the extremes; to remain working remotely for good or mandated returns to the office.
In this episode I’m taking you through Matt Mullenweg’s, 5 Levels of Autonomy. As the Founder of Automattic, the creators of Wordpress and a fully distributed workforce of over 1200 people in 57 countries, he has a clear view of these 5 levels that organisations can move through to achieve what he describes as Nirvana.
The Impact of Wellbeing on Business Performance with Dr Adrian Medhurst
The global pandemic has had a significant impact on the way we all work and live, and this impact has had a flow on effect to our wellbeing; physically, mentally and emotionally.
As you’ll hear in this conversation, its not only our work and life that we need to be considering its also our wellbeing and performance.
Today’s guest is Dr Adrian Medhurst, the co-founder of Benny Button a work-life wellbeing and performance business. Adrian explains the inherent link between our wellbeing and our performance and how this impacts our ability to perform at work.
Workplace Equality #choosetochallenge
We have recently celebrated International Women's Day with the theme #choosetochallenge and I had the pleasure of sitting on the panel at Orange Digitals recent event, alongside Nicolette Baker and Brooke Jamieson moderated by Liz Ballantyne.
This is a collection of my takeaways and thoughts from the event of where we could continue to choose to challenge and what this looks as both men and women in our organisations
Returning to the Workplace: Optimising Space for People with Claudette Leeming
Claudette is the Head of Property Strategy & Performance at Australia Post where she is responsible for managing their corporate property portfolio.
In today’s chat, Claudette and I discuss:
- What Australia Post’s property portfolio looks like,
- How COVID has impacted the workplace operations differently in each of the states with the varying extents of time out of the office,
- How they have managed the organisational needs to date
- As people, our ability to adapt and our resourcefulness to change when we need to; and
- Her perspective on the death of “hotdesking”.
The Future of Work: The Impact of COVID
The pandemic has changed the way we work forever.
In Season 2 of Work Life by Design, we will be exploring what the future of work looks like and impact that COVID has had on how, where and why we work.
I’ll be bringing you guests from a wide range of expertise surrounding our world of work, including one of Australia’s largest employers, wellbeing and performance experts, futurists and workplace strategists from the other side of the globe.
How Long Does It Take To Design and Build A New Workplace
A question I am asked A. LOT! But I can also tell you that many companies don’t allow enough time!
The answer is not that straight forward.... it depends.
Today I talk you through the variables that impact how long it takes to design and build the workplace of your dreams! So you can make sure you don’t leave your run too late and need to compromise on one of your largest business investments.
Your Wellbeing Strategy, More than just a Fruit Box
While many organisations have the best of intentions in supporting their employee’s wellbeing, we need to be looking beyond offering a fruit box or introducing a step challenge.
The health and wellbeing of our employees is an employers responsibility, as Gallup say;
“People with thriving wellbeing simply do better in life. And companies with thriving employees do better business.”
We need to be looking at the three elements of wellbeing and how our workplace environments are supporting them.
Why Flow, Routines & Rituals Are Important In Workplace Design
It wasn't until we all packed up and went home during our first lockdown at the end of March 2020, that we realised the impact that having a daily routine and rituals had on structuring our day. The act of getting up, getting dressed and "going" to work, all work together to shift us mentally and physically into "work" mode.
The ability to consciously shape that energy shift and guide people through the routines and rituals that are important in your workplace, is an opportunity many organisations don't know they have.
Translating Your Purpose into Culture
Purpose is the reason an organisation exists beyond making money.
Finding our purpose as an organisation can be a difficult path to navigate. Not because we don't have one, but because as an organisation we may find it difficult to articulate or communicate in a way that engages our employees.
However, when we know our purpose, we can begin to enable a clear line of sight for our people on what it means for us to be living our purpose as an organisation.
Reimagine Your Future Of Work?
To celebrate the launch of the Your Workplace Future Ready program, I’ll be going LIVE daily discussing all things work! If you’d like to join and have a question you can find me on Instagram, Facebook & Linkedin – see the links below.
To kick it off today I’m talking about reimagining our future of work. What we need to be observing in our organisations, the data we need to be collecting and the trends and opportunities that we can be looking to, in order to imagine what our future of work looks like.
Is Your Workplace Future Ready?
Doors open to Your Workplace Future Ready next week!!! Tuesday 23rd February.
This is my signature 7 week online program where I guide you through the 5 pillars that underpin the workplace dynamics in every organisation.
There is an art and a science to creating high performing workplace that people actually love and want to be in everyday and over the last 20years I have been developing the tools and methods that I share through this program.
Drink Anyone? The sh*tstorm that was 2020
This episode was a challenging one to record, because honestly it has been an incredibly difficult year, but none the less, here we are.
2020 has been the year that saw us switch to working from home overnight, achieving something that years of change programs have struggled to do! It saw us embrace “top dressing” and introduced us to a raft of new skills that we didn’t know we needed or possessed.
In this episode I’ve taken a look back over the year that was and recapped on the lessons and learnings that we’ve all had to learn as well as how this year has shown up for me personally and all that I set out to achieve.
Business Innovation, Enabling Work that Matters with Fiona Triaca
Fiona is the Founder and CEO of Naked Ambition, a design-led innovation company. She is also the host of Naked Ambition the Podcast where she interviews the people who are making an impact in leadership, Innovation and design, across the world.
This episode unpacks what innovation is within our organisations and Fiona explains the three horizons that organisations can consider in creating and leading more innovative companies, the outcomes that can be achieved and how enabling these skills internally can sustain greater long term innovation within in the organisation long after the consulting team have left the building.
Setting Your North Star
Gaining clarity on our own sense of purpose and the values that we wish to live by form the foundation from which we can then live out a life of alignment. When we are unclear on these aspects of our life, we can get off course, make decisions that don’t feel right and enable others to make decisions for us, as we have no real clarity on where we are heading, our North Star.
This episode will take you on journey to prompt contemplation of what your north star looks like and the actions you can take to re-orientate yourself in its direction.
Self Fidelity, How to Thrive at Work with Cassandra Goodman
Cassandra Goodman is a coach, facilitator and the author of the newly realised book Self-Fidelity. With over three decades of business experience across multiple industries she has held many different senior leadership roles, including Global Director of Employee Experience at a healthcare company where she activated the organisation’s purpose ‘Longer, Healthier, Happier Lives’ for their 86,000 employees across the world.
The Link Between Values and Behaviours
Have you ever considered the link between the values and the expected behaviours in your organisation? When we set the values of our organisation, we need to go deeper in order to clearly communicate the expectations of our culture. In going to that next level we are looking at the behaviours that we expect to see when we are living in alignment with the values of our organisation. When we have clarity of the behaviours, we can then begin to use our environment to encourage people to do more of the things that align with the expected values of the business.
The Business of Design
In today's episode, the tables are turned and I'm being interviewed by Amanda Bulow from the Awesome Women Podcast. We discussed;
- all things workplace design,
- how our workplaces have evolved,
- the different types of typologies and space settings that we have in our workplace environments,
- we debate whether or not the open plan office is dead,
- what we might be expecting to see in our workplaces in a post COVID World; and
- how the workplace will need to consider the next generation.
Who to Hire & When
Creating a new workplace environment can be a really exciting, but also a pretty daunting time. So it’s important to get the right people on your team to guide you.
This episode gives you a shopping list of the external advisors that you might want to have on your side and engaging with across your journey. Designing and building your new workplace doesn’t happen all that often and you want all the help you can get to make this as enjoyable and as fun as possible, while making sure that you're getting the right advice.
We cover everything from leasing through to building your new dream workplace and who you’ll need at each step of the way.
Workplace Technology, It's More Human Than We Think with Tom Price & Simon Backhouse from Aston Consulting
Tom Price is the Founding Director of Aston Qld and Simon Backhouse is the company's Associate Director of Workplace Technology. Aston are specialist building services engineers and technology consultants operating solely in the commercial workplace sector. They are dedicated to delivering advice, design and technical support in the areas of engineering and workplace technology.
We cover everything from our desire for intuitive technology to the impact that working from home has created on the technological infrastructure of our organisations.
Designing Your Future Workplace | Who Needs to be Involved
Achieving optimal results from your next workplace requires input from a variety of stakeholders. It requires a diverse range of opinions and view points to ensure that you have looked at the possibilities from the view point of each of the users, and you might even be a little surprised by what you learn about your organisation.
Digital Wellbeing and the Impact on Productivity
Dr Kristy Goodwin is a speaker, author, researcher and media commentator exploring the impacts that our digitalised lives have on our physical health, mental wellbeing and productivity. She works with organisations, both big and small, to optimise employees’ digital wellbeing and productivity as they navigate remote working arrangements.
In this episode we discuss the impact that our technology is having on our physical health and particularly our eyes, the side effects of being tethered to technology and how we need to balance our “screentime with greentime”. We also get a bit nerdy discussing neuroscience and the chronotypes that guide us in finding our most productive work time.
Creating the rules of belonging with Fiona Robertson
As humans we are hardwired for social connection in order to survive, a deep need to feel like we belong. My guest in this episode helps us to understand the connection between organisational culture and the rules of belonging.
Fiona Robertson is a culture and leadership expert, she is also the author of Rules of Belonging - change your organisational culture, delight your people and turbo-charge your results.
The Importance of Brand in Workplace Design
An organisations brand is far more than a logo, website or a suite of colours. It is the representation of the organisations purpose, why they exist, where they came from and where they are going. It is their story and personality. Your brand is much more than a logo and a suite of colours.
Your brand is a representation of who you are, what you stand for and how you want people to experience you.
How Much Space Do You Need?
How do you know what size tenancy is going to be right for you? Current space +10%? Industry average?
In this episode we’ll be exploring some of the common mistakes that are made in determining how much space you need. I’ll then share with you three steps that you can take to analyse how your organisation is using your workplace in order to put some data and science behind determining the floor area that your business will need.
The Business of Brand in the New Era with Sarah Skeats
Sarah explains how when we connect into purpose, understanding our brand and our community, we can then create a space that articulates their brand and bring it to life in a physical space. She also shares with us the true impact that a well-executed brand can have on your business, and how investing in your people enables you to live up to your brand promise, along with the role that purpose plays in business.
How much does a new office cost?
In this episode we discuss all the factors that influence the cost of your workplace from floor area and workplace style through to how your brand influences the level of finish that you desire. We’ll also be looking at how time impacts on costs and how with the right lease deal, you can actually build a new workplace for FREE.
A Pragmatic Approach to the Tough Stuff with Ali Hill
In this episode Ali talks us through the opportunity we each have in our organisations to create high performing teams, how we can embrace the ability to support our remote and distributed teams, her shift in thinking around the link between culture and performance and shares how the team at Pragmatic Thinking have implemented three key structures into their day to help them focus their motivation and productivity.
Workplace Styles | What are the options?
Workplace styles - What are our options? What are the various types of environments that exist for us to consider when moving into our new workplace? Now is a really exciting time for us to reimagine our workplace in the future. We've been presented with so many possibilities that lie before us. We're going to be looking at everything from the traditional right through to running a remote workforce, and what makes up each style and how different types of industries have typically aligned with each style. We look at how technology is enabling us to work differently and what that means from a workplace environment perspective.
Coworking: Designing Space for People with Jonathan O'Byrne
In this episode we discus everything from what coworking is and is not, how the traditional model of the serviced office has evolved and how technology can be sophisticated enough to service even the highest of security requirements.
We also explore the importance of design iteration; the ability to observe and reinvent spaces to accommodate the changing needs of the people who use the space. Jonathon went so far as to create 9 persona’s for his clients in order to support their varied needs, and space for both the extrovert and the introvert.
Workplace Trends Beyond 2020
In this episode we explore what some of the technology’s that our buildings may look to incorporate into the future and how workplace management technology will enable us to monitor, manage and coordinate our workplaces. We’ll discuss the role of wellbeing and how our buildings will look to become “healthier” into the future and how that can then translate into the physical design to enable employee wellbeing.
Why you need a Wellness Strategy with Katrina Walton
Katrina Walton is the founder and director of Wellness Designs, a boutique workplace wellness business supporting Australasian organisations to create healthy, safe, engaged and high performing workplaces.
Katrina believes that healthy employees equal healthy organisations which equals a healthy economy, a win win scenario. In this episode, we look at what a wellness strategy is, why your business needs one, and how you can ensure that your wellness strategy is delivering value to your business and isn't just another strategy that gets filed in the drawer.
The True Purpose of Workplace
What is the True Purpose of our Workplace? This episode explores why we go to work, how we came to be at this place we call work and how our workplaces fill a social need and connection in each of us. We also look at how our workplaces connect our personal purpose to that of the organisation and how we can achieve significant productivity and performance gains when we socialise at work.
Babies at Work, It can Work! With Nadia Taylor
As an Executive Director at Mapien, Workplace Strategists, Nadia shares with us her career journey of growing from a graduate to building a million dollar practice and how deciding to have a child was decision she had put off. We discuss the impact that a lack of role models can have on your perception of what is acceptable, the fear that stops us from asking for opportunities at work, along with the cultural shift that comes from having a baby in the office.
Transforming Leadership with a Calm Mind with Amber Hawken & Brett Robinson
In this episode our conversation delves into the impact our physical, mental & emotional capacity can have on enabling us to live optimally, the transformational effect of leading with a calm mind on our business’s and the impact of dissolving the separation that can exist so we can bring our whole self to work.
The Brand Story Founded on Country Values with Dugald Warby
Your brand is so much more than a logo. It’s your story, what you stand for and how you want to be seen. In this episode I’m pleased to be introducing you to Dugald Warby. Duge is one of the partners at Hall Chadwick Qld, a firm that was founded 40 years ago with deep roots back to Western Queensland.
The Scientific Impact of Workplace Design with Dr Libby Sander
Designing a workplace that yields results is in fact a science. Dr Libby Sander is Assistant Professor of Organisational Behaviour at Bond University, where she researches the impact that our workplaces have on our lives across, neuroscience, architecture, psychology, entrepreneurship and urban design.
Welcome to Work Life by Design, the Podcast
Hello, I'm Mel Marsden and welcome to Work Life by Design. In a time when we can work from anywhere, why is it that we actually need to "go" to "work" to "work"? You're about to hear how organisations have optimised their business by shifting employee and business mindsets from slow, stagnant operations, to agile and flexible environments, established premium levels of employee experience and realised substantial profits.
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