2015 lessons learnt from the RDA team


2015 lessons learnt from the RDA team

As the end of the year approaches the RDA Orana team has considered some of the lessons learnt from 2015. We hope they spark similar light bulb moments for the region’s leaders, businesses and community.

1. “Great works are performed not by strength but by perseverance”

This quote from Samuel Johnson is the more action-orientated sibling of “patience is a virtue’. One of the actions of RDAO in 2015 was announcing a major project in partnership with the Korean government. We are only just now seeing our work come to fruition on this project. But this, of course, doesn't mean we've been sitting around waiting. We've been navigating twists and turns, dedicating energy to overcoming and negotiating roadblocks, learning about the need for cross cultural understanding and learning. We've discovered it’s not about being patient, but how you persevere and act and look at things from different perspectives during challenging periods that determine the outcome.

2. Asia literacy will be one of the biggest business assets in the next 10 years

Our increased exposure to the expanding Asian market this year has demonstrated just how important this is within our own organisation, let alone the greater region. In our own cross-cultural relationship building we have learnt that trust and time are key. International students are being touted as one of our most underused resource as their presence in Australian businesses could work to forge stronger cultural ties and cultural competency in workplaces. With the opportunities presented by the recent Free Trade Agreements in Agribusiness and innovation especially, it will be vital for businesses hoping to work in these markets to have strong cross-cultural understanding and skills.

3. Alliances and “Collaboratition”

Working across different cultures doesn’t just apply to working across national boundaries, but also forging partnerships within our own region. Sometimes this means we must collaborate with our competition, hence the term “collaboratition”. We were glad to see this year more and more councils, who do compete for funding, work together on joint projects and were pleased that both government and private industry agreed on the key issues affecting the region at forums held mid-year. Further, to meet international market opportunity businesses are forging alliances to meet supply. Collaboratition will drive innovation, and innovation will drive growth in the region.

4. Our supply chains are some of our most marketable assets

Recent history has shown/ taught us that our raw product is our most valuable asset – but that is about to change. In reality, the Asian market in particular has shifted to want products ready for consumption at the point of export from Australia. As we work to deliver more niche, value-added products our supply chains and speed to market, particularly in regard to fresh food, will be hugely important. This is why in 2016 RDA Orana will be focused on delivering a study into freight and logistics in the region with a particular emphasis on regional aviation.

5. Our region is one of the best

Ok, so we may have known this already, but with great results in the ERF and NSRF, international attention and strong regional leadership, we are, as always, proud of our people and of our region. We Love the Life We Live and look forward to seeing the exciting developments that occur over 2016 and are confident the New Year will bring multiple new opportunities to the region if we lead by example, persist, think outside the square, work together, learn to understand different perspectives and ways of working, and share.


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