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1st - 5th, February 2021
Melbourne, AU

Command & control your leadership campaign


- Balance compassion and authority in your leadership style
- Lead your team in emergency scenarios and high-stress environments
- Build confidence and courage to secure your command
- Manage and overcome ego clashes and credibility bias


Critical thinking & efficient communication field guide
Courage in action - Build & lead a courageous team
Sword of Orion - Valour & Tenacity in the 1998 Sydney to Hobart Tragedy
Unconscious bias - The hidden figure in diversity
Civilian leader - Operating as an un-uniformed leader in a uniformed environment
Re-balancing work & life - Leading the model
Confident leadership - Commanding presence, boldness & passion
Compassionate leadership - Leading with a difference
Leadership Effectiveness - Leading in stressful environments
Team effectiveness & team learning in command-and-control scenarios
Lead for inclusion & innovation
Combat the credibility prejudice & build your alliance
Defining the role of leadership in emergency and disaster response
Managing ego clashes - A survival guide
Courage & Compassion - Reflecting on journeys taken
Workshop Day One
Workshop Day Two
Pre Summit Workshop

01 Feb


Critical thinking is the art of analysing, processing and understanding information. Critical thinkers can draw reasonable conclusions from a set of information to distinguish useful and useless details for decision-making. But let's not forget the value of communication. Industry leaders must know how to entwine critical thinking and communication skills. This workshop will provide you with a broader understanding of critical thinking concepts and communication techniques to support you on your career ascent. 

The disposition towards critical thinking

- Stimulate inquisitiveness in your thought processing

- The laws of induction and deduction in processing information

- Practice self-efficacy and self-trust 

Foundations to developing your strategic foresight 

- Scenario development and analysis 

- Classify repetition and patterns 

- Assess the implications of present actions and decisions

Marriage between objective analysis and effective communication

- Distinguish between active listening and reflective listening 

- Develop your cognitive agendum before communicating

- Efficient communication in complex scenarios

Inductive and deductive communication

- Identify whether you’re an inductive and deductive communicator

- Diversity in various communication techniques

- The power of inductive and deductive communication in variform conditions

  • Jo Wise Director & Founder Jo Wise Leadership

Summit Day One

02 Feb

Case Study

Leaders must summon their will to deal with a range of complex and unknown situations, creating workplaces that are motivating and safe for others. Leadership requires courage in action. Without courage, your ability to lead effective teams can be discredited and derailed.

Air Commodore Courtney will discuss how demonstrating courage at work will inspire courage within your teams.

- Encourage to build courage

- Become a better leader using empathy and kindness

- Don't hinder failure, embrace it!

Case Study

Late afternoon of December 27, 1998. Captain Marc Pavillard was at home with friends and family when he got a phone call from his Flight Commander – a call that would change everything. Join Marc as he reflects upon the incredible 1998 Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race rescue mission, where tenacity and valour were hallmarks of the sailors caught in the storm. Risk management, teamwork, and innovation allowed the helicopter crew to rescue sailors from the sinking Sword of Orion yacht. Some 21 years on and elements of this rescue remain raw and emotional. Marc will recount the challenging circumstances and decision-making under pressure, and how he realised that the lessons learned during this rescue have more currency than ever – in emergencies, but also many other areas of life.

- Learn how to manage risks and make sound decisions under pressure

- How trust in your people creates a team that can achieve anything

- Hear how strong foundations through training and experience give your teams capacity to deal with the extraordinary


Defence, enforcement and emergency services strive to increase diversity in its ranks, particularly since the advent of the All-Volunteer Force. It has made significant progress, but changes appear to be sluggish. One of the reasons is how latent biases, especially concerning gender and race, inhibit the achievement of diversity goals. Join our lineup of panellists as they detail their journey and provide guidance on how you can break cross-cultural barriers. They'll outline how biases could affect personal advancements in the workplace, and what can be done to reduce biases to diversify senior leadership.

- Break cross-cultural barriers

- Identify how biases could affect your personnel advancements

- Your role in reducing biases to diversify senior leadership

  • LCDR Prudence Hawkins-Griffiths Executive Officer, Officer Training College, Australian Defence Force Academy Royal Australian Navy

  • Fyowna Norton A/Director, Community Crime Prevention Emergency Management Victoria

Case Study

Many of the emergency services, enforcement and defence industries consist of active-duty, reserve military, federal civilian employees, and private contractors. Hierarchical relationships are inherent in armed forces, police, intelligence agencies, military, enforcement, and emergency service lines. Working as a civilian in these environments can be particularly challenging as nonuniform or civilian leaders face rejection or be ignored when leading ranked teams. Danni will explain how you can lead a team of ranking members as a civilian leader. 

- Inspire belief and support for your cause 

- Your knowledge and work is your rank and uniform  

- Be a team player - understand the culture to gain trust 

  • Danni Maynard Deputy Director Aviation Safety Promotion & Engagement Defence Aviation Safety Authority


The challenge of combining work and family is not unique to the military environment. However, this juggle is a particular hurdle for members of the ADF who work in posting cycles, have operational commitments, and who undergo deployments. For women especially, the need to combine work with family disproportionately impacts career progress and hinders leadership opportunities. Join us for a conversation with Major Lyndsay Freeman as she discusses how she balances military duties, a family, and an academic scholarship. She'll review the tricks and tips to help you find your work-life balance. 

- Understand the benefits of prioritising your time

- Make your workplace work for you

- Learn to identify your peaks and troughs 

Expert Commentary

Leaders need to command presence and embody boldness, though women face unique challenges when it comes to establishing a presence. A key component to these challenges is buying into impostor syndrome or using body language that appears submissive, waiting for others to recognise and reward their achievements. Control the kind of impression you make and take command. Join Gina as she discusses how you can control how people perceive you through exploring strategies that will support your leadership journey.

- Be confident and make a positive first impression

- Project authority and power

- Be a serious contender and aspire for senior positions

  • Catherine Bell Director Bell Training Group

Case Study

Most leaders guide with their heads, forgetting a critical component of leadership - their hearts. They’re conditioned to put business before benevolence, which is profitable in certain scenarios, though unsustainable in the new generation of leadership. Compassionate leaders use their social attributes to understand each team member as a significant individual. Michelle will explore how you can be a powerful and compassionate leader, using her journey as a summary of the essential skills you need to thrive.

- Compassionate and mindful communication

- Exemplify unselfishness to lead, rather than follow 

- Nurture innovation through compassion  

  • Michelle Murphy A/Operations Manager, Adult Retrieval Ambulance Victoria

Summit Day Two

03 Feb

Case Study

Leaders who excel under pressure don’t panic. They have control and can provide a calming effect on others. Competent leaders demonstrate and radiate confidence - especially under pressure. But what skills are necessary to work towards being this type of leader? Join Deputy Commissioner Worboys as he discusses his leadership journey, the practical skills required to be an effective leader for your organisation, and guides you on the path to leadership.

- Actions plan to combat stress - resilience 

- Train the brain to deal with the chaos

- Model and encourage wellbeing practices

  • Gary Worboys Deputy Commissioner, Regional Field Operations NSW Police Force

Case Study

Due to their crucial and highly consequential tasks, it is extremely important that we understand the levers that lead to effectiveness of multidisciplinary emergency management command-and-control teams. Leaders need to initiate structure in the team. Situations can require immediate and decisive action. Those responsible for command and control must be prepared, trained and practised in the necessary skills that allow them to lead and guide their teams in C&C scenarios. Join Senior Sergeant Cavell as she discusses the key skills required to effectively guide and support your team as well as how you can be an effective leader through maintaining a strong command presence. 

- Monitoring your teams effectiveness 

- Issuing clear orders and commands 

- Maintaining a strong command presence.

Case Study

It has been widely accepted that increasing diversity in organisations results in greater innovation as well as diversity of thought. Quantitative data supports this proposition through case studies, correlations between increasing female board membership and better financial returns and statistical computer modelling of comparisons between diverse and homogeneous teams. As leaders, how can we ensure the success of our organisations through inclusion promoting innovation? Lieutenant Colonel Kidson will provide a clear rationale on how you can build an active strategy to broaden the spectrum of diverse thinking at management levels.

- Increase diversity through strong management support 

- Encourage cognitive diversity and openness 

- Facilitate dialogue between people of different gender and backgrounds

  • LTCOL Renee Kidson Group Leader, Force Design Defence Science & Technology Group

Case Study

Credibility is hard to earn and easy to lose. People can judge you not just on your job performance, but on other things that can feel harder to control, like how you are perceived and how you communicate with others in your organisation. There are those moments in your career when you feel that someone may be undermining your credibility - but how do you stop the saboteurs? Bianca will discuss how you can manoeuvre and persevere through these moments by strengthening alliances in your business to support you and your career prospects. 

- The foundation of your credibility is knowledge 

- Identify and establish a support network 

- Take away their power through addressing the matter openly 


When it comes to emergency and disaster management, leadership can make the difference between success and catastrophe. Depending on their abilities, a leader can minimise the damage caused by situation, or exacerbate the impact. Our panel of industry leaders will discuss the key skills and qualities that leaders should possess to understand the environmental factors, assess the scope of a disaster, and successfully support their teams through times of emergency and adversity.

- Effective strategic planning and organising personnel 

- Operate with a clear vision and organisation values

- Make decisions based on situational analysis, knowledge and experience 

  • LTCOL Renee Kidson Group Leader, Force Design Defence Science & Technology Group

  • Michael Stephenson Executive Director Emergency Operations Ambulance Victoria

Case Study

There is a fine line between self-respect and ego. Quite often, problems arise because most individuals cannot differentiate between the two. As a result, ego clashes can occur causing rivalry and tension in a team environment, which is detrimental to the organisation, employee morale and group dynamics. When egos come to head at the workplace, it is your duty as a leader to control the situation from escalating, whether it be two individuals from your team or whether the egoism is directed towards you. So how does one avoid and manage this ego clash? Commander Justine Gough will discuss how you can manoeuvre around the clash of egos with practical tips like trying to identify the root of the problem, encouraging and supporting those around you who feel ignored. 

- Identify the root of the problem behind the ego

- Support your team and those who feel ignored

- Do not ignore the issue!


Clare will bring together the themes and ideas explored over the conference. Through engaging discussion, Clare will summarise the takeaways from the event and offer ideas for taking the next step in your career.

- Create your plan of action

- Summarise takeaways

- Forge your transition into the confident you

  • Clare Desira Founder & Director Top Five Movement

Post Summit Workshop

04 Feb - 05 Feb


Cultivate resilience for leadership success

- Develop your leadership style

- Develop confidence to lead authentically

- Resilience as a leadership approach

- Focus on strengths

Foster a constructive mindset

- Build a positive mindset for leadership

- Turn weaknesses into growth opportunities

- How to stay calm under pressure

Manage and limit the effects of stress

- Identify your stress triggers

- Recognise your leadership strengths, weaknesses and triggers

- Find ways to cope with and avoid stress

- Recover from setbacks and adversity

Internalise your leadership identity

- Self-empowerment to underpin career progression and risk-taking

- Develop authentic leadership voice

- Connect leadership and wellbeing

  • Michelle Dunscombe Community Development Consultant & Community Emergency Plan Facilitator Jeder Institute


Working in male-dominated professional fields

- Behavioural norms within these organisations

- Unconscious bias - How this affects decision making

- Recognise your own biases at play

High-level communication skills for career advancement

- Leverage your communication style

- Develop and communicate confidence, poise and assertiveness

- Influence with integrity

- Manage conflict and execute difficult conversations with confidence

Foster high performance in teams

- Diversity of thought and creating inclusive work environments

- A coaching approach

- Assertive vs aggressive leadership approaches

Strategic career progression

- Skills for self-promotion and accelerated career progression

- Transition strategies

- Recognise when conversations turn crucial

- Achieving improved leadership performance - your action plan

  • Nikki Roche Director BlueZenith Leadership and Coaching Solutions


  • LCDR Prudence Hawkins-Griffiths

    Executive Officer, Officer Training College, Australian Defence Force Academy

    Royal Australian Navy
  • Gary Worboys

    Deputy Commissioner, Regional Field Operations

    NSW Police Force
  • LTCOL Renee Kidson

    Group Leader, Force Design

    Defence Science & Technology Group
  • Michelle Murphy

    A/Operations Manager, Adult Retrieval

    Ambulance Victoria
  • Danni Maynard

    Deputy Director Aviation Safety Promotion & Engagement

    Defence Aviation Safety Authority
  • Michelle Dunscombe

    Community Development Consultant & Community Emergency Plan Facilitator

    Jeder Institute
  • Fyowna Norton

    A/Director, Community Crime Prevention

    Emergency Management Victoria
  • Michael Stephenson

    Executive Director Emergency Operations

    Ambulance Victoria
  • Nikki Roche


    BlueZenith Leadership and Coaching Solutions
  • Catherine Bell


    Bell Training Group
  • Clare Desira

    Founder & Director

    Top Five Movement
  • Jo Wise

    Director & Founder

    Jo Wise Leadership


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328 Flinders Street, Melbourne, VIC, 3000, Australia

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