News & Commentary Straight from Think HQ

News June 05, 2018

Meet Jane

Jane is a recent recruit to the senior leadership team of both Think HQ and Lumin. Jane has worked across corporate, advertising and not for profit. In her most recent position she oversaw the rebranding for The Tipping Foundation prior to the merger with House with No Steps, establishing the largest disability provider in Australia.

Jane has stepped into the role of Business Development Manager at Think HQ’s sister organisation Lumin. Jane is instrumental part of the team at Lumin - bringing communications capacity building to a growing number of organisations in the social change and NFP sector.

We sat with Jane to learn more about her extensive career.

Working at Grey Worldwide for 15 years and moving on to not for profit The Tipping Foundation, what drives you professionally and what do you attribute your success to?

I was at Grey Worldwide and worked through the ranks prior to being appointed Managing Director. I was MD of Grey Melbourne and Canberra for around 5 years of that time. What drives me professionally? I genuinely enjoy the work I've been involved in. It's spanned advertising, marketing, new business and research, all areas I'm very passionate about. I've been incredibly lucky as well. I have a very supportive family and have worked with some exceptional people throughout my career.

Why did you cross over to the not for profit sector? Does your move to Lumin align with that decision?

I'd had a number of opportunities at Grey to experience not for profit, both working with them in the agency and then in board positions. Whilst I was at Grey we did a lot of work in the behavioural change area and attracted a large number of not for profits seeking creative assistance. I clearly remember working with a client to raise awareness for Motor Neurone Disease (MND). It was a very real and personal experience as the client was experiencing advanced stages of MND. We also worked with the Summer Foundation. Working with founder Di Winkler led to my moving to a board position on Summer for a number of years.

So, when I left Grey there was a real opportunity to take my corporate experience and apply it to not for profit. With the introduction of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) in 2013, I was in the right place at the right time to take on the role of General Manager of Marketing at The Tipping Foundation.

Prior to commencing at The Tipping Foundation the majority of funding came from the government. The introduction of NDIS tipped everything on its head, turning the disability services sector from business-to-government to business-to-consumer. In that respect, the alignment with Lumin and Think HQ is fabulous.

What do you enjoy about your role at Lumin?

Jen, Lumin’s Founder, and Director Jesse are inspirational. I love the idea that you can discuss opportunities and then just go ahead and pursue them. It's a fabulous young team that are full of energy and can do attitude with incredible smarts.

What kind of value do you place on data and evidence in strategy and what advantages can organisations hope to gain by framing their communication strategies around research?

I'm really passionate about research. I have worked in the research space with almost every role I've had, including a five-year stint at a research organisation when my son was a small tacker.

The advantage of research is the consumer insights you uncover. Those insights are invaluable in terms of how you develop your communications strategy. The more informed you are, the more value you get from your strategy.

From a communications perspective, what do you think are the challenges faced by not for profits and how can they arm themselves against those challenges?

Major challenges appear to be delivering outstanding work on a skinny budget. Often in not for profits there is so much coming at you that it becomes difficult to prioritise and you skate along the surface.

The key to overcoming that is having the ability to focus on what is critical, work collaboratively throughout the organisation, and ensure that your key communications message is consistent across every touch point. Also, I can’t stress enough the importance of being engaged with internal and external stakeholders and maintaining a committed, proactive and passionate approach to your work.