Coffee shop commerce – Ruth’s Travels

Coffee shop commerce – Ruth’s Travels

With COVID restrictions being lifted in NSW, last week WOB Chair Ruth Medd made the pilgrimage to Cairns and Mission Beach for the first time since December 2019.  "It was very pleasing to see venues complying with COVID safety regimes" she reported.  
Here’s a run-down of her coffee shop meetings and catch ups.

Morning coffee in Cairns  

Coffee on day one was with Danielle from UNHCR (the United Nations’ Refugee Agency), who is currently working off base in Australia from Kabul, Afghanistan. Her UN organisation undertakes exclusive humanitarian work, tasked at feeding 11 million Afghanis.  A fascinating discussion.

UNHCR is a global organisation dedicated to saving lives and protecting the rights of refugees, forcibly displaced communities and stateless people. 

Coffee with Wendy Morris and learning about tourism

Wendy is a business owner from Port Douglas and chair of Tourism Tropical North Queensland (TTNQ).  We had a coffee to talk about boards; she is now a WOB member.  I was interested to hear about TTNQ and the strategic work the board has done under her leadership with their stakeholders, to develop a coherent strategy for FNQ tourism.

Mission Beach

As is often the case, I ran into founding Charley’s Chocolate shareholders Sheila and Norm at Joey’s coffee shop. On this occasion they had an additional companion, Charlotte (Lotty), their 20-month-old Labrador.  Members of the Mission Beach community time-share Lotty for walks.  Great therapy for the time-sharers and another example of supporting community members. 

Risk Register Prize goes to Mission Beach resident Ruth Faulkner

Over a coffee (Shaw and Smith Chardonnay actually) Ruth Faulkner mentioned that Neami,
her mental health board in Melbourne, had included pandemic in its risk register prior to COVID and they had tested it prior to COVID.  The prize of a workshop goes to Ruth.
Neami is a community-based organisation providing services to improve mental health and well-being in local communities. 

Home in Rushcutters Bay - a recruiters perspective on Zoom

Back home at my regular breakfast spot, Uliveto,  I chatted to WOB member Ken Teale, an experienced head hunter, on his views on Zoom meetings:
  • works ok for 3 to 4 attendees;
  • after that it's a monologue as people struggle to get heard. The result is the senior person does a lot of talking;
  • women traditionally suffer in meetings.  Is this being exacerbated with Zoom? 
  • non-verbal signals are important when talking to candidates and assessing them for senior roles and boards.  This is where Zoom (in his view) falls down.
Ken’s new business, Confideo Partners, specialises in executive search (C-suite and board appointments), recruitment (direct reports to C-suite) and HR strategy predominately in technology, FinTech and financial services.

Ken can be contacted at Confideo Partners 0425 256 528 and email 

So concludes Coffee Shop Commerce for  this week.