Entries by arthurkirk

You’re so clever!

I was walking along the footpath the other day and over-heard a mother, who was getting her young child out the car, say “you’re so clever” in an animated voice full of wonderment and praise. Well, my heart did a little dance, my mouth smiled and my brain said “wow, what a great thing to say to another human being”. As I continued my walk I questioned myself as to whether I had ever said that to anyone and whether it had been said to me. At times, I have said “that is clever” but not sure about “you’re so clever”, if I have it can’t have been too often! […]

If you spot it, you got it!

The first time I heard this proposition I was doing some “growing up” work with my then mentor. We were discussing the people, places and things that caused me to become frustrated, irritated, critical, angry, resentful. The proposition is that the so-called shortcomings or defects that I observe and over react to are often a reflection of my own attitudes and behaviour, whether currently or at some time in the past. After recovering from the shock and cleaning up the vomit I said to my clever friend “surely a good vent sprinkled with a dash of character assignation is just fine, everybody does it. After all what is wrong with […]

Who Moved My Cheese

If you haven’t read the iconic change classic Who Moved My Cheese? written by Dr Spencer Johnson and first published almost 2 decades ago you should consider adding it to your holiday reading list. The reality is that once the cheese has moved it rarely, if ever, returns as is was. In other words what we consider to be the good old days are just that. Currently there are many around the world promoting the idea that we can go back and all will be well. This a falsehood and it is delusional. Whether we look back 50, 100, 500, 2,000 or 100,000 years, it is blindingly obvious that “things” […]

BIG Data Global POWER

Scientists have recently obtained BIG data using the kirk-electro-magnetic-tron which reveals that the energy levels currently being exhibited by the planets cells and particles are at an all-time high. Whilst the technical explanation of this is beyond me, Dr Horkel Static informs me that this means that the level of “buzziness” is almost off the chart. Apparently, the energy reading produced by human cells was recorded at 9.42 per head of global population. The previous all-time high of 6.85 was recorded in 1793! Dr Static went on to explain that the human cell energy measurement is made up of two components: good stuff energy and not so good stuff energy. […]

Plasticine Strategy

A plasticine strategy requires a culture that is underpinned by strong ethics and high performance. We all know what happens to a house built on weak foundations, it doesn’t stand the test of time and an organisation is no different. Most organisations around the globe whether large, small, public, private, government, not-for-profit, sporting or recreational are faced with the challenge of how to remain relevant in an ever demanding world. Strategies that assume a relatively fixed course over a set period of time fail to recognise that everything is in a state of flux and constant change. This has always been the case and as far as we know will […]

Change is hard

Winston Churchill said “to improve is to change; to be perfect is to change often”. If we are not committed to continually improving ourselves, or if you like developing our characters, how do we expect to make the most of our time on the planet? For the majority change is hard, we are creatures of habit whether those habits are good, bad or indifferent. Typically change will come from three places:   I want to change (internal – desire); I need to change (internal – desperation); or I have to change (external – law, regulation). Change for the sake of change is foolish so it is vital to have a […]

Compliance is dead

Aesop’s fable The Boy Who Cried Wolf reminds me of the “compliance is dead” rhetoric we have been hearing about in the accounting profession for the past two decades. Whilst the point being made is valid the timing of game changing technology has been slower than first predicted. The introduction of GST in 2000 (oh my goodness, 16 years ago!) also provided accountants with another compliance driven growth spurt. I don’t believe compliance is dead nor is it likely to die. What has, and will continue to change is the regulators ability to easily access data and continue to adopt tolerable risk practices which creates the less rather than more […]

Emotional Intelligence

‘It’s just a stage he is going through” advised the well-meaning friend to the parent. I have recently had the good fortune to listen to Greg Hywood, Managing Director & CEO, Fairfax and Carolyn Stenhouse, Managing Director, Stenhouse Consulting talk about leadership. They talked about fear, emotional intelligence and the need to continually develop your character – how outrageous! When you peel back the layers of the chest beating, tantrum throwing, ego driven adult what you find is a big lump of gooey fear. Typically, “fear that I will lose something I have” and “fear that I will fail to get something I want”. Leadership requires a range of attributes […]


A few thoughts on leadership: Above all leadership requires courage, integrity and trust. Leaders have a clear purpose, learn from the past, constructively deal with today, see and plan for the future. Leaders are consistent and persistent, always fair in their dealings of others placing principles before personalities. Leaders review their behaviour, acknowledge and take responsibility for their shortcomings always striving to grow their character. Leaders are focussed on helping others and will confront and solve the needs of their people. Leaders think before they act (every action has a reaction). Leaders understand that everything is connected, consider the big picture avoiding decisions in isolation. Do you have, and are […]

Tick Box Management

Beware tick box management and tick box managers. Acting with your customers best interests in mind, prudently managing your business risks, satisfying compliance requirements and completing the many necessary and recurring tasks associated with running your business are part and parcel of everyday life. However, when activity is primarily driven by the need to complete the “to do” list we are in danger of engaging in a management process that will result in diminishing returns. Just as insidious is having managers, who may look and sounds oh so impressive, but who lack substance, creativity and the ability to lead. Avoid having these people in your business at all costs! Be […]