Key things to help you everyday

Recharge yourself at the VILLAGE SUMMIT with Australia’s top motivational speakers

The best investment you can make in 2020 is to take time out and recharge the motivational batteries at the VILLAGE SUMMIT, the annual meeting of village management professionals.

Join 300 of your colleagues in experiencing Australia’s best motivational speakers.

First up is Matt Church, returning to the VILLAGE SUMMIT by popular demand. Matt is listed in the Top 10 motivational speakers in the world for his ability to simplify the job of leadership and empower you to identify and implement simple changes with big results.

Sonia McDonald explores courageous leadership and how to dare to step into your own power as a leader. You will learn how to build your ‘A Team’, deliver trust and resilience and ultimately satisfied residents and a successful business.

Dr Paulo Maestro is an internationally renowned speaker, author, sports psychologist and neuro-scientist. As a former champion cyclist, he is revered as a legendary mentor in the field of human potential on and off the sporting arena, working with Valentino Rossi, Usain Bolt, US boxing phenomenon Floyd Mayweather, and potentially you too.

Plus, you will learn from 22 leading village sector leaders and CEOs who will share their knowledge and experience.

Book now for the VILLAGE SUMMIT and recharge in Sydney, Thursday 20 and Friday 21 February. Learn more HERE.

What the research tells us

Real people and real community leadership (in villages)

There has been so much discussion around the country about “leadership” through these disasters, from people calling out the Prime Minister, politicians being on holidays when their own portfolios are going up in smoke, and ‘too late’ questions on who is responsible for fires and when to call in the armed services.

The fact is that real people in each community are stepping forward in the vacuum and just ‘leading’ and leading well – because they hear and understand the local issues.

We are seeing hundreds – if not thousands – of ordinary Australians taking the needs of their communities into their own hands – making decisions, people providing meals, creating ‘GoFundMe’ pages, organising donations, volunteering to cook, mending fences, carting fodder, etc.

This level of community engagement is very thought-provoking!

Becky Hirst, The Community Engagement specialist, says: “the silent majority is now in action”.

Are our residents of our retirement villages members the ‘silent majority’? Can we draw a retirement village comparison?

Becky provides an alternative model of decision making “flipping from the government always being the decision maker, even deciding to what level the community will be “allowed” to influence decisions, to a time where the community may become “the decision makers”?

Perhaps an example from the bushfires would be: does the local community know better deciding when to reduce local forest fuel loads compared to committees and bureaucrats in Canberra who fix one rule for the whole state or country?

Can the same be said for retirement villages and decisions being made at head office?

Using Becky’s chart on community leadership, let’s look at the first three points and our role as Village Managers:


We will identify what is important for our community and take action to implement change where necessary.


We will look to work together with Government as providers of advice, support and resources where necessary.


We will work with Government to ensure that its concerns and issues are directly reflected in any alternative solutions developed.

Replacing ‘government’ with operators/head office.

Is this the future or is this today?

We, as strong, flexible, agile “leaders”, will be delivering a model like this to empower our communities to be more engaged with decisions that are likely to impact village communities and residents.

This is leadership from the centre. It is not always easy, and it requires skills. But it generates great results for your village ‘silent majority’, as we have seen with the fires, and great satisfaction for us as a leader.

Love to know your thoughts?

Things to watch

Fires reinforce the need for professionalism and planning

Fires happen. The past four months have been ‘catastrophic’ with drought and tinder dry bush.

But fire happens every year in villages for domestic reasons, as many as you would know. We report in The Weekly SOURCE newsletter an average of four village homes being burnt to the ground every winter because a heater or a stove is left on.

Having plans and policies in place is vital – and now required in NSW with their new Rules of Conduct. And the plans must include the unexpected.

We spoke to Patrick Reid, the CEO of NSW South Coast based IRT who had seven aged care homes and seven villages in the fire zones on New Year’s Eve.

One of the challenges they had to handle was nine residents that required ambulance evacuation from their Dalmeny aged care centre but the local town of Narooma only had two ambulances and multiple calls for them.

Telephone lines also failed as communication towers burnt down; and they had to ensure sites had enough supplies of pureed and texture modified food.

Their pharmacists also stepped up to ensure residents were provided with their medication, with their Malua Bay pharmacist still seeing clients despite losing his home in the fires

We also spoke to Nikki Fisher, COO at Ingenia. They had 10 land lease communities and holiday communities in the fire zone over the Christmas/New Year. At Lake Conjola they lost two homes to fire (while the local community lost 70 homes) and had no power for eight days with 73 residents who had decided to stay despite evacuation advice.

Ingenia worked with Emergency headquarters to have police escorts to bring in generators and satellite phones and sent out over 10,000 emails to families updating on events.

(For more background and lessons from Ingenia see next Tuesday’s the Weekly SOURCE newsletter).

The message is we all must be professional in our preparation for the unexpected. Tools and education are available through membership of our DCM Institute personal development program. You can learn more HERE.

Photographs courtesy of Ingenia.