How’s your corporate karma?

Jaid Hulsbosch

After recently giving up some time to mentor students Jaid Hulsbosch asks why the industry isn’t doing more to help nurture future talent. 

A recent opportunity to reflect didn’t involve a spiritual retreat or a bucket list review or a winter mood rebalance at a luxe resort. It simply provided a time to reassess one of the edicts of good karma and a recommitment to ‘giving back’ to the industry for a purposeful corporate journey.

Such an opportunity occurred earlier this year when I was invited to guest lecture the UTS postgraduate students (advertising and communication). An evening of robust discussion provided a sense of purpose and fulfilment that easily outweighed the investment.

Dr Martin Williams, lecturer, corporate communications and advertising, UTS, commented at the end of the session that, like many institutions, he struggles to get industry professionals to lecture and mentor students at all levels. He continued, that it’s so important for the industry to invest in its future through this channel. It offers an insight to the industry and provides personal perspectives on career and the challenges of the industry to a new generation.

Why are we neglecting our future industry? It can be difficult to commit as we have commitments that fill our days from the politics and pressure of work to family and leisure interests. There is not enough time to accept invitations from educators and be involved particularly for evening formats. After a long day at the office, it’s not a priority to give up an evening during the week and make a contribution.

Sometimes it’s an overwhelming experience best left to others to speak publicly and avoided if at all possible. But it’s our culture of ‘busyness’ that protects us from engaging in projects that offer benefits to our own industry community.

Remember when you were a student and a pivotal moment will more than likely be a contribution from a speaker or presentation that was an impactful moment on your future career. Could you inspire and shape a young person’s future?

September 7 marked 12 months of Australia’s latest Federal government and when elected some critics warned of bad days ahead with a forecast of budget cuts and lack of investment. It could be true as Higher Education embarks on uncharted territory as government policies encourage privatization and reforms for a deregulated education market.

This challenge is replicated at a state level with a loss of courses and of particular interest design teachings. Hornsby (NSW) TAFE Institute and its arts program students reportedly were moved from world-class facilities, and painting and graphic design courses cut.

These decisions inevitably downgrade creative education and its ability to service another generation of innovative communicators.

No matter the course, its location or academic grading; we need to reinvest to educational opportunities that provide real-life understanding for students as they embark on a their career. And further it opens a learning corridor between the student and the seasoned professional that provides a two-way opportunity of education. Who knows who will learn the most?

The corporate karma connection could be your chance to be involved with the lecturing or mentoring of tomorrow’s superstar. But whatever it is, investing in your own professional community is responsible leadership and secures the future for your industry.

Jaid Hulsbosch is director of design agency Hulsbosch.


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