This article was first published in Business Insider Australia, October 12 2017.
If Australia wants to compete with global innovators, corporate culture needs to change.
GirledWorld co-founders Madeleine Grummet and Edwina Kolomanski want to equip the next innovation generation of female leaders, founders and STEM experts with the enterprise skills, and access to female business role models they’ll need to excel in the future of work.
Grummet told Business Insider that GirledWorld focuses on embedding purpose across everything they do, and building a startup culture that fosters creativity and human-centred design.
“We’ve worked and studied across the US, Asia and Europe over our career lifetimes, and it’s interesting to compare the cultural dictates of those economies,” Grummet said.
“What is clear is that comparatively, Australia’s corporate culture is inherently conservative and currently bound by legacy processes, hierarchies and systems that actually impede innovation.
“In the context of a data-driven knowledge economy, the advent of exponential technologies, rapid communication and a fragmenting marketplace, it’s clear that corporates will need to embrace change, employ human-centered design to put the customer at the heart of their business model, and embed purpose in their culture if they are going to survive.”
If you compare Australia to the Silicon Valley start-up scene, for example, Grummet said the companies there have an intense focus on being scalable, 'scrappy', agile and adaptable to change – driven either by the consumer, the marketplace or the technology.
“In that environment of rapid value shift, traditional industries and companies simply have to adapt to survive and this is driven by startups,” Grummet said.
“So companies and corporate cultures over there are actively trying to org-hack themselves to stay agile, redefine their purpose and drive intentional innovation.”
Grummet recently returned from a trip to the Valley, where she participated in deep-dives in innovation labs with the likes of Google, Airbnb, Twitter, Tesla, Silicon Valley Robotics and Singularity University.
Unfortunately, changing your culture is not something Australian businesses can just “copy and paste” from Silicon Valley, Grummet explained.
“In order to stay globally competitive and locally relevant, we must create and nurture our own culture within a start-up ecosystem that drives net job creation for Australia’s future economy.”
In the next 12 months, Grummet says girledworld's focus will be on three things: building an entrepreneurially minded team, scaling to reach more girls across Australia with a digital platform and continuing to embed purpose across their business to deliver on their mission.
“Five years from now we would like to have a multi-national team working within an operating culture that is diverse, positive, purpose-fuelled and that lives by its values, providing active mentorship and future career pathways to girls.”
GirledWorld Co-founders Madeleine Grummet and Edwina Kolomanski are members of the NewCo Advisory Council, and will be presenting at the Melbourne NewCo Festival on Thursday November 23 at NAB's The Hall in Melbourne. For tickets book here.
The Panel Event entitled 'Redefine the Workplace Paradigm: How to get women to stay, lead and succeed', will feature guest presentations and girledworld Co-Founders in conversation with Sally Ann Williams, Engineering Community & Outreach Program Manager, Google, Ralph Ashton, Co-Founder, Australian Futures Project and #WTFAustralia, and Nick Crocker, Partner, Blackbird Ventures. Tickets here. (Event details below and full NewCo Melbourne schedule here.)
NewCo Melbourne: Redefine the Workplace Paradigm: How to get women to stay, lead and succeed brought to you by girledworld.
girledworld will explore the third gender revolution as we unpack diversity as an innovation driver, hear from experts about purpose-driven female leadership, and smash up workplace status quo and unconscious biases. Join us to build your toolkit on how to drive cultural transition in a positive, sustainable way, and how to create connection between industry and education to build the female pipeline of future innovators, leaders and founders.
NewCo is a festival of innovation and inspiration where mission-driven companies invite you inside their offices to share stories of positive change.
Business Insider Australia is the proud media partner of NewCo Melbourne, which kicks off on 22 November. Get your tickets and see the full schedule at www.mel.newco.co