Page 1

An enterprise of:

Community Directors Intelligence May 2019

Communicate with clout By Matthew Schulz, editor

In this issue

If you want people to know what you’re all about, you’ve got to get the message out.

2 Amp yourself up: Festival news

It sounds easy, but with everyone else trying to do the same thing, it’s easy to get drowned out by all the other noise coming from big news and events, social media, any number of media channels, that deluge of emails and well ... life.

10 Brett de Hoedt: Audience, emails, media – what you need to know

For community directors, this can be a big challenge, given you’ve got to balance more than just getting attention, but ensuring what you’re saying is “on message”, aligned with your strategic interests and going to keep you out of strife. Tricky. This week, as part of the Festival of Community Directors, we’ll be hosting “Communicate with Clout” week, in which we’re bringing you a host of webinars, e-books, videos and articles all aimed at amplifying your ability to communicate and boost your impact. Flick through this bumper edition, and we’re sure you’ll find material to help you wrangle the media, define your brand, measure your is an impact This and get upextract to speed with where not-for-profits stand in an of the May 2019 edition election year.

of Community Directors . To Inside,Intelligence you’ll find info onread all our latest activities and opportunities to this and more from get involved in Festival events, including our June 3 Practical Impact our series, become a resources, and a brief virtual tour Conference, free and low-cost member of the Institute of our new home, theDirectors brand-new third sector headquarters, Our of Community Community Australia House. An enterprise of: keep an eye on Finally, don't forget our social feeds and emails for the latest Festival of Community Directors news and much more.

4 Preview: Practical Impact Conference 6 Lynne Haultain: Community Comms

17 Sector studies: ICDA’s survey winners, why outcomes are trending 19 Manage up: Tackling a CEO review

22 Brand building: Why not-for-profits must get their story straight 26 Cost commentary: Who’s paying for the squeeze on overheads? 28 Travel expenses: Can community directors claim that? 31 $10k bonus: Association snaps up our insurance week lottery 32 HQ opens: Inside the new social sector hub, Our Community House 34 Capacity boost: Come up to the Data and Communications Lab 36 Women leaders: What we’re doing to make gender matter at ICDA 39 In the wars: RSL vs pokies profits

41 Meet the trainer: Natalie’s nous honed in Aussie heartland 44 Vu Le humour: Does this board member ‘spark joy’? 47 More: credits, contacts, back editions

P Packed calendar

Our Community’s Stefanie Ball pulls the $10,000 prize during the Not-for-profit Insurance Week prize draw streamed live on Facebook and witnessed by Aon’s Nathan Richmond

Festival a capacity boost for community directors By Lachlan Pollock, Our Community

The first ever Festival of Community Directors, a yearlong celebration of community governance, has sparked new enthusiasm in the sector.

Among early highlights include:

Three months in, the Institute of Community Directors Australia (ICDA), event continues in its mission to strengthen the sector, Our Community’s group managing director, Denis Moriarty said.

• Week-long celebrations promoting social justice, ethics and culture, human resources, communications and schools

“We’ve already have had high engagement and fantastic feedback, but the festival continues to evolve as those in the sector let us know how we can assist, with training and other resources.”

• A string of free training events

“We’ve been really happy to see those working hard in the community sector enjoying the festival’s offerings.” Community Directors Intelligence May 2019

• One organisation winning a $10,000 prize during Not-for-profit Insurance Week (see page 31) • An International Women’s Day gathering marking one of the first events hosted at the new headquarters for the community sector, Our Community House (page 36)

• Webinars on a multitude of not-for-profit issues being held from Perth to Brisbane • The Practical Impact Conference to be hosted at Our Community House on June 3 (page 4) The packed festival calendar had seen both ICDA and its members focus on boosting expertise and knowledge among community directors, Mr Moriarty said.


Download the program now:

“So far this year we’ve been achieving our goal of providing training and workshops which can be accessed all throughout the country.” “We’ve held webinars which are easily accessible to everyone, no matter their location, and we’ve hosted training events in Perth, Melbourne and Brisbane, and we’ll be in Adelaide later this month for a free training course tailored for those in the disability services sector.” Major sponsor the Commonwealth Bank has boosted support, enabling ICDA to host free training workshops, including the Rethinking Governance for the Disability Sector workshops already held in Perth and Brisbane, with set for Adelaide, Melbourne and Sydney this year. The bank is also sponsoring the Better Governance for Schools half-day workshop in Brisbane, Thursday, May 16.

Community Directors Intelligence May 2019

But with the year just begun, there will be many more affordable, high-value opportunities for community directors across the year with weeks focused on schools, policies, office bearers, performance, strategy, whistleblowing, finance, inductions and fundraising still to come. Resources for all of our past weeks are now available on the festival site too. “We expect one of the year’s highlights will be our Practical Impact Conference, on Monday, June 3, a networking event for forward-thinking not-forprofit leaders wanting to boost their impact,” Mr Moriarty said.

MORE INFORMATION 2019 Festival of Community Directors site:


M Conference preview

Speakers (L-R from top), Robyn Mildon, Andrew Means, Sonja Hood, Nicholas Gruen, Jen Riley and Laura Black

If it’s worth doing, it’s worth evaluating Next month's Practical Impact International speakers to share their wisdom Conference, at Our Community We’ve brought internationally-renowned data House in Melbourne will answer expert Andrew Means from the US to pass on his wisdom on integrating data into your all of your burning questions organisation’s strategy. on program evaluation. Why do it? How do you do it? Are you doing it right? What should you be doing differently? With an election looming, the Australian Labor Party has pledged a new evaluator-general to foster a collaborative relationship between program experts and evaluation experts. This year’s keynote speaker, Nicholas Gruen, is the man who envisioned and proposed the idea, and at the Practical Impact Conference he'll explain how it will affect your organisation.

Community Directors Intelligence May 2019

Laura Black, the director of Methodist Mission Southern in New Zealand, will explain how her organisation overcame its “allergy to data” and is now reaping the benefits. Sonja Hood, the CEO of Community Hubs, passing on her organisation’s lessons from the frontline of the data battlefield. The Centre for Evidence and Implementation's Robyn Mildon, will demystify evaluation, while Jen Riley will facilitate a discussion from a community panel who have made data work for them.


Why it’s called Practical Impact

Don't miss this opportunity

This year’s program is designed to help you understand both the importance of data in evaluating your programs, and the best way to make it work for you. We’re offering you access to the skills and knowledge to improve your program implementation and demonstrate the impact you’re having.

Lock in your spot at this year’s conference, Monday June 3, at Our Community House in North Melbourne.

Community Directors Intelligence May 2019

REGISTER NOW: au/practicalimpact


q Media mastery

How to take charge of your communications Heading a small organisation with “big ambitions”, former ABC broadcaster and accomplished public sector communicator Lynne Haultain knows how to get a message across. Once the voice that hundreds of thousands listened to over their breakfasts on ABC’s Melbourne flagship show for four years, Ms Haultain has parlayed those skills, earlier legal qualifications and recent work across three levels of government into her latest role as executive director of the Victorian Law Foundation. At the foundation, Ms Haultain’s communicationsfocus has seen her continue to push the organisation’s goal of increasing community knowledge of the law, and getting better access to it, through Law Week, the Everyday-Law website and such smaller but important products such as council advice booklets on disputes, pets and parking. And as an accomplished communications strategist, and graduate of Our Community’s Diploma of Business (Governance) she says there are several things not-for-profits can do to boost their profile, increase their impact in the political arena, protect the interests of their clients and members, and to make a difference in their chosen field.

She says those skills have become, appropriately, highly regarded by many organisations. And she says not-for-profits are no exception with their need to build the capacity to “to engage with people, and explain, and give context to sometimes complex issues”. She says not-for-profits “have a desperate need to engage with both the communities they’re trying to support, and to the society that they’re hoping to have support them. “You have to be able to tell a story.”

Yes, but we don’t have the resources of big corporates … That’s no excuse, Ms Haultain, says. And in fact, not-for-profits have strengths that bigger organisations would envy. There’s the potential for many organisations to feel overwhelmed by the size of the national and global media environment, especially when they’re a small not-for-profit on a tight budget. But she points out that there’s no point trying to compare yourself to the big guns, because your goals and methods aren’t the same.

Understand why you’ve got to be able to tell your story Communication is “absolutely critical” for all organisations in what Ms Haultain dubs “the communication century”, which is why not-forprofits can’t afford to fall behind. “If you’re not connecting with people in a way that’s accessible to them, you’re not succeeding on any score. In every sphere whether notfor-profits or every other quarter — whether it’s corporate, medical or legal — the criticality of communication is becoming increasingly evident.”

Community Directors Intelligence May 2019

Media mastery is about knowing your story and good planning says Lynne Haultain.


Not-for-profits need to balance the risks involved in going public to best meet the needs of their members and clients.

“If you were to look at the corporate communications environment, so much of it is down to paid advertising, and I think many of us would be relatively cynical about their success in communicating genuinely to their community.” She says not-for-profits have “an extraordinary advantage in being as closely connected to their communities as they are”. At the same time their scope of communication is often narrower, and social media and other communications methods such as targeted emails have created more chances to connect. “You don’t need to be on national television, you need to talk to the audience that you’re interested in.” In other words, good communication is about matching your intended audience with the mechanism that you use to get to them.

Look locally to boost connections For example, a not-for-profit in suburban Australia may want to just target a local patch. “That’s done through Facebook, it’s done through the local newspaper, it’s done through talking to the school, or the Probus group.” And not-for-profits should “maximise the relationships that they already have either through their own board members, their membership, or the engagement with local communities”. You’d be amazed once you start asking people: “Who can we go and talk to?”, “How can we get in front of groups who might be interested in what we’re doing?”. Community Directors Intelligence May 2019

“You’ve got all sorts of links. You’ve got netball and football clubs, school groups, aged care facilities – you’ve got all sorts of possibilities on your doorstep, it’s just about uncovering them ... and then finding a way that tells a story that relates to that group.” While Ms Haultain admits doing this can be labour intensive, especially when it comes to face-to-face meetings and networking, but it boils down to coming up with your basic story. This she says, can be “a one-pager that explains in clear terms in a way that people will relate to, about what you’re trying to do, and making sure that gets that in the hands of everybody with a newsletter or website.”

Take control of your story But a public profile comes with risks, especially if you leave your communications and media strategy in the hands of third parties (such as media outlets). “The challenge in lots of contexts is being able to is being able to tell those stories in ways that don’t compromise the people involved,” Ms Haultain says. “Not-for-profits have to be really careful about telling stories of clients or people they’re supporting, for fear of crossing a line, whether it’s privacy or their future success.” While a tricky business, full consultation and an understanding of the risks will smooth the way. Her involvement with the Victorian Foundation of the Survivors of Torture over 20 years, and currently as its chair, is a case in point.


“Not-for-profits have to be really careful about telling stories of clients or people they’re supporting, for fear of crossing a line, whether it’s privacy or their future success.” “It’s very difficult for us to talk about clients. And the clients who are of most interest in the news are generally also the most vulnerable.” This includes not just the people in Australia, but how media reports about them could affect their families and connections in places such as Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria. Similar issues can affect organisations working in domestic violence, with wards of the state, in disability care and many other sectors. “That’s why it’s best if groups take control of their own story-telling, rather than inviting big media in. That media will always want to talk faceto-face with an individual. And that’s for good reason. It’s an extremely powerful device, and that’s what media thrives on.” She says it’s fantastic if you’re able to work with the media in mutually beneficial way, but there’s also other options including blurring identities or creating “composite” characters that maintain your not-for-profit’s “fundamental truth”. Such matters require a bit of strategic thinking, as well as creating trust in your team and with your clients, to ensure they don’t suffer as a result of speaking up, Ms Haultain says.

When the story moves fast Flu outbreaks in aged care homes, hoax bomb threats at schools, charges laid over a miscreant worker’s actions; things are often fine until they suddenly aren’t. Ms Haultain says there are “a huge number of issues” that can arise in areas such as aged care, education and early childhood care. “To be honest it’s startling to me that organisations working in that space haven’t worked through the implications of being on the wrong side of a media story.” She gives as an example, the series of bomb threats that swept across Australia schools in January 2016, affecting 600 schools in Victoria, Queensland, New South Wales and the ACT.

Community Directors Intelligence May 2019

“That prompted to many in education to consider ... what happens when it happens to my school? How do we handle communications with students, parents, teachers? And what actions are we going to take?” She says it also illustrated the way that social media meant organisations could easily be outpaced by other channels, with journalists monitoring Twitter and Facebook carefully. “You need to be conscious of what sequence your communications take place: Who you tell first, and how they might find out, and whether it’s critical that they hear it from you, or from a Twitter repost, for instance.”

What to do if you’re ‘under attack’ While things can be “tricky” if your organisation is in crisis, Ms Haultain says taking control is still (usually) your best option. “My preferred model as a lifelong communicator is that it is better to speak than not. If you don’t, somebody else will, and the public will make up their own mind about why you haven’t spoken, and they may imply an awful lot, at odds with the truth.” There are occasions though, if you find yourself under “severe attack” from an aggressive media pursuit, that there’s “nothing to be gained from speaking out”. Knowing which approach to take is a “case by case” scenario, in which you’ve drawn on your networks to consider the implications, if you’re unable to seek professional assistance. Which brings her to one of the most important things …

Develop your media plan Most organisations will want some kind of public profile, and that works better with a plan. Ms Haultain says developing that plan can be as basic as recruiting talent with communications skills.


She says a “massive plan” or formal document might not be necessary. But clear thinking is. This means having a clear understanding of: “This is what we think and believe. This is the story we’re trying to tell. This is the audience we’re trying to get to.” “If stuff hits the fan, then we revert to these core values.” She says a platform of fundamentals — even in crisis — can help your organisation survive. The basic crisis management may include setting up an in-house capacity to know who picks up the phone if the 60 minutes calls. She stresses front-of-house staff are often the ones who need the clearest guidance about what to do about the media camped outside the building. Even a simple plan should cover the basics include “maintaining civil politeness”, creating an “information tree” that spells out a policy of who tell and in what order, how to deal with several calls at once, and to ensure someone is keeping tabs with what’s happening on social media. Organisations will often be aware that a big issue is on the horizon, such as a court case in which preparation is the key. And it is important to consider your partners and how they might respond. For example, one organisation she has worked closely with often deals with “dysfunctional families situations” often with other service providers. “If you’ve set protocols, are your partners on board with that?” In the same vein, you’ll want to know that your “escalations work in the right order”. Community Directors Intelligence May 2019

Why good communications may be your director's duty Not-for-profits often find themselves at the centre of an increasingly politicised and divisive environment on matters from asylum seekers, environmental issues and sexual rights. And given mainstream media’s insatiable appetite for “controversy and disagreement”, Ms Haultain says it’s possible to make “a very quick pole vault into the public consciousness” with controversial comments. Of course, there can be big implications for the organisation and negative consequences for your stakeholders. Ms Haultain says the trick is to be able to “create that nuance” of an appropriate voice amid all the chatter. “If you can put a view that’s not hysterical, that’s well-researched, well-considered, and comes from a source of real and long experience, I think you’ll be taken seriously.” “In many instances NFPs may have a duty to do so, as the people with that wealth of insight. It bothers me sometimes that there’s a lot of complaint about media treatment, but a lack of willingness to actually engage with it.” And now than ever before, not-for-profits have the power to tell their stories. “You don’t need to wait for the tellie or print any more … and that direct communication is having a really profound effect.”

MORE INFORMATION Read Brett de Hoedt’s tips for winning media coverage (page 15) Help sheet: What to do in a media crisis Policy bank: Examine our communications policy templates


Y Good marketing

Do you really know your audience? Learn the power of conversion By Brett de Hoedt, Mayor of Hootville

Sorry to get all Old Testament on you, but here’s the first commandment of marketing: Know thy audience. That’s why I say to the marketers I train, “Tell me about your audience like a marketer talks about their audience.” Too often, the answers are vague and predictable. The marketer has ignored the commandment, condemning them to fiery damnation. But salvation is at hand. I call it my “conversion formula”, and it’s all spelled out in The Conversion Formula Workbook. The conversion formula takes you through the many reasons why someone does or doesn’t engage with you. It gives you insights into your audiences to help you home in on your audience’s hearts, which is where most decisions are made. It may reveal unpalatable truths that rarely get mentioned in surveys or focus groups.

The key to understanding So why bother? The best marketers know their audiences intimately because that understanding enables them to better connect to that audience. Far beyond age, gender and occupation, the best marketers slice and dice their audiences, then come to understand them. They know their audience in terms of the following key things.

Their relationship with you Do they have a longstanding relationship with you? Or are they new, or lapsed? Was/is the relationship strong or just transactional?

Community Directors Intelligence May 2019

WATCH NOW: Brett reveals his audience conversion formula.

Their stage of life and career Recent graduates will have very different priorities from even third-year students. New parents have different needs from parents of teens. Retirees are different again.

What the audience sees as valuable about you Is it your proximity, cost, prestige, expertise, cultural specialisation, longevity, newness? Remember, what you see as valuable may be different from what they see as valuable, and what they see will likely change over time. Be realistic.

Their current reasons for not using, supporting, or referring to you Are you seen as a low-quality provider, unwelcoming, or expensive? Do they underestimate the benefit you can bring to them? Maybe – just maybe – they’ve never heard of you.


What are people saying about you really?

Their business cycle Are they starting, expanding, dying? Have they got a new CEO? Is it the end of the financial year?

What might inspire them to take action now, as opposed to later?

MORE INFORMATION Read about the power of your brand (page 22) DOWNLOAD: The Conversion Formula Workbook: Understand and influence your audience (like never before) (available Friday, May 10).

Move them from consideration to action – something must be holding them back.

Finding the key This is why I invite you to take the time to work through the The Conversion Formula Workbook: Understand and influence your audience like never before with a few smart people. (Okay, it can be just you.) Be honest and thoughtful in your responses but don’t waste a minute on this exercise if you won’t make changes to your marketing as a result. Some changes might be minor: new copy on your website or changing the date of your annual mailout. Other changes might be significant: changes to the way you welcome and bring onboard new supporters or customers, or the way you price your services. Either way you will be in living in accordance with the first commandment of marketing, and your place in Nirvana will be a step closer.

To keep reading, become an ICDA member now.

Community Directors Intelligence May 2019




A practical, inspirational and affordable event for community sector boards, committees and their staff. BOOK NOW!


How to get started with evaluation

Profile for Our Community

Community Directors Intelligence, May 2019  

In the latest magazine for community directors, we delve into what not-for-profits and charities need to do to communicate well.

Community Directors Intelligence, May 2019  

In the latest magazine for community directors, we delve into what not-for-profits and charities need to do to communicate well.