Show cover of Thriving in Complexity Podcast

Thriving in Complexity Podcast

Get a peek behind the scenes of complex workplaces and situations as Susanne Le Boutillier interviews leaders and experts who will challenge your thinking, inform, and inspire your leadership of self and others, so you and your team can thrive in complexity and uncertainty.


Episode 23: Strategic Communication in a Complex World with Dr Libby Mitchell
At the core of every successful business lies the importance of good organisational communication. It’s the thread that connects teams, departments, and stakeholders and helps them make sense of their context. However, when communication isn’t clear, people can get messages that cause confusion and distract them from what’s most important. In this episode of Thriving in Complexity, Susanne Le Boutillier talks to Dr Libby Mitchell, a specialist in stakeholder engagement and strategic communication with experience in consulting, working in corporates and academia across the globe and in multiple sectors. Dr Libby shares insights about the impact of effective communication, the pitfalls of storytelling and why using clear, concise, jargon-free communication in complex situations is essential. Don’t miss this episode as Dr. Libby helps us understand the value of strategic communication and how doing it well can help us thrive in complexity.
49:31 8/15/23
Episode 22: Coaching for Relentless Forward Progress and Potential with Liz Mackevicius
Organisations aren’t the only ones who can go from good to great – people can too. Coaching helps empower individuals to tap into their hidden reserves of passion and talent so they can grow. Having the right coach can help individuals become more resilient, adaptable, and capable of dealing with complex situations. In this episode of Thriving in Complexity, Susanne Le Boutillier speaks with Liz Mackevicius, an accredited organisational coach who brings lessons learned from ultra marathon running into her coaching. With nearly two decades of experience in public and private planning, Liz discovered her true passion: empowering individuals to translate aspirations into real breakthroughs by building client confidence, resolve and satisfaction.  In our conversation Liz shares her expertise on facilitating transformative journeys, where she guides clients towards becoming the person they aspire to be. Liz emphasises the significance of relentless forward progress, encouraging individuals to focus on the present and embrace the journey rather than being overwhelmed by long-term goals. Drawing from her experience, Liz unveils the power of shifting perspective and unearthing ingrained stories, beliefs, and assumptions that shape our self-perception. Join us as we delve into Liz’s expertise to facilitate relentless forward progress for making work (and life) fulfilling and rewarding, going from feeling good to great. 
49:36 7/18/23
Episode 21: How One Woman Helped Transform Lives And Challenge Systems Over Twenty Years with Cath Bartolo
Navigating the intricate landscape of non-profit service provision in a world of escalating social complexities necessitates innovation, holistic approaches, and person-centeredness. In this episode of Thriving in Complexity, Susanne Le Boutillier is joined by Cath Bartolo, CEO of YFS, whose pioneering work in Logan and surrounding areas is a testament to these principles. Honoured as a Member of the Order of Australia, Cath brings to the table two decades of experience working tirelessly with vulnerable populations. Throughout the conversation, she underlines the pivotal role of integration and partnership among service providers, communities, and a wide spectrum of stakeholders to achieve positive outcomes for individuals and families facing adversity. During our conversation, Cath talks about YFS’ transformative journey. From her early days to her commitment to rigorous, evidence-based programs and outcome measurement, she underscores the evolution and significance of case managers working with people as navigators or coaches. Cath also highlights the tremendous influence of initiatives like Logan Together, Thriving Families and Substation33 in opening up opportunities to do things differently. Cath brings to light the multifaceted challenges inherent to service provision amidst the increasing social complexities of our times. She emphasises the necessity for flexibility, understanding, and above all, empathy in service providers. Additionally, she explores the profound impact of establishing a bedrock of trust between the community and organisations like YFS in combating systemic harm. Join us as we explore the dynamic landscape of non-profit service provision, the power of a holistic approach, and the significance of innovation, empathy, and collaboration in addressing social complexities and improving lives.
57:34 6/12/23
020: Why Complexity And Procurement Can Go Hand In Hand with Sharon Bailey
Have you ever considered how procurement approaches have evolved to tackle the intricacies of our modern world? It's time to challenge the common assumption that procurement acts as a blocker rather than an enabler. In fact, there's a remarkable alignment between procurement and complexity, where context, active listening, and engagement pave the way for exceptional outcomes. In this episode of Thriving in Complexity, my guest is Sharon Bailey, the Chief Procurement Officer of the Queensland government. Sharon is not your typical head of government procurement and brings a diversity of experience and fresh perspectives to the table. From her early days as a social worker to her current role, Sharon has a deep understanding of how to achieve the best procurement outcomes in complex situations. During our interview, Sharon opens up about typical procurement challenges and how to tackle them. Whether it's commissioning infrastructure projects for the highly anticipated Brisbane 2032 or providing vital services to support individuals experiencing vulnerability, she offers diverse strategies to help you commission what is needed for the context. Join us as we delve deeper into the fascinating world where procurement and complexity intertwine, guided by the expertise of Sharon Bailey. She challenges the misconception that the procurement team is out to stifle your flexibility and adaptability in the face of emerging situations. Get ready to unlock the true potential of procurement in this thought-provoking episode of Thriving in Complexity with Sharon Bailey.
40:07 5/22/23
019: Predictive Analytics and Person-Centred Approaches with Andrea Danes
In this episode of Thriving in Complexity, our guest is Andrea Danes, EY’s Global Human Services Leader, with nearly 30 years of experience in both public and private sectors with program expertise in Medicaid, Child Welfare, and other Human Services programs.
48:04 4/24/23
018: The Power of Activating People in Complex Situations with Max Hardy
In this episode of Thriving in Complexity, Susanne Le Boutillier speaks with one of Australia’s foremost experts in community engagement processes, Max Hardy. Max highlights that starting softly and listening without judgement, rather than going in hard from the start, is key to creating positive outcomes that benefit both the community and the organisation.
55:52 4/10/23
017: How To Build Resilience And Capability with Complexity-Based Tools and Methods with Viv Read
In this episode of Thriving in Complexity, Susanne Le Boutillier talks to Viv Read about the importance of using complexity-based tools and methods in organisations. As the Director of Complexability Pty Ltd, a company that specialises in enabling collaborative projects with other independent consultants working in the field of complexity, Viv shares practical tips on how to effectively manage complex projects informed by her many years of experience in the field.
65:53 3/20/23
016: Advisory Boards: A Valuable Model for Organisations During Times of Complexity with Louise Broekman
In this episode of Thriving in Complexity, host Susanne Le Boutillier talks to Louise Broekman about the value advisory boards can offer when you’re navigating complexity. Regardless of whether your organisation has a governance board, advisory boards help improve problem-solving and ensuring quality thinking for the best decision-making.
53:57 2/27/23
015: Navigating Healthcare Complexity: The Importance of Human-Centered Design with Satyan Chari
When the pandemic struck, it revealed opportunities to innovate and improve healthcare systems in different areas of the world. Healthcare was in the spotlight begging for creative solutions. In this episode of Thriving in Complexity, Susanne chats with Satyan Chari about bridging gaps in healthcare through human-centred design. He is an Occupational Therapist and currently leads the Clinical Excellence Queensland (CEQ) Bridge Labs programs. The program Satyan leads harnesses the benefits of creative design, systems, and human factors science to improve healthcare. It’s clear as day the present healthcare system challenges are very different from the problems of healthcare in the 1980s. System interactions today compel us to create innovative solutions that allow us to look at various healthcare situations through the lens of technical and social complexity. Giving people the freedom to think creatively allows them to utilise resources and create human-centred designs to influence different approaches to healthcare problems. Satyan does not hold back in sharing his expertise in innovating healthcare, he understands the value of human resilience while working in complexity. Change happens when people are willing to do the work and employ sustainable solutions.
57:28 2/20/23
014: Get Rid Of Cookie-Cutter Change and Start Designing Changing Experiences with Faith Timbs
Cookie-cutter approaches to change are often derailed by volatility, uncertainty, ambiguity and complexity. So, why do so many people still cling to them? Is it because we desire certainty, even when we know that’s often not possible? In this episode of Thriving of Complexity, Susanne speaks with Faith Timbs on how to get rid of cookie-cutter change and start designing changing experiences. Faith is the Founder and Managing Director of Timbs and Co: Change Design. Her business helps clients stop managing change and encourages them to take a fresh look at changing. Using cookie-cutter approaches to change can make people feel unproductive and demotivated. When context is used to determine the changing experience in an organisation, it establishes an understanding of what needs to happen, where change leaders should start, and where the organisation is going. If you want people to make sense of and understand how they can be part of the change, tune in as Faith dives deep and shares her knowledge and expertise in creating a good changing experience.
59:29 2/13/23
013: Why Structure Is Powerful When Making Decisions In Complexity with Samantha Rush
We all make decisions but how often do we consciously think about how to make good decisions? Ask a group of people to make a decision together and it either gets more challenging or people look for the quickest means of reaching an agreement. In this episode of Thriving in Complexity, Susanne chats with Samantha Rush about why structure is powerful when making decisions in complexity. Samantha is currently studying for her Ph.D. in decision-making. She knows from her research that using a structured process encourages individual contributions from team members, and helps to surface minority and diverse opinions that might otherwise be missed. Making use of a structured process in decision-making amplifies the quality and the quantity of information available to teams before they make a decision. If this sparks your curiosity and you want to learn how you can utilize a structured process in decision-making, make sure you listen to the episode.
37:43 12/19/22
012: How The Universe Exacted Revenge When I Launched A Podcast
Susanne’s experiences on a recent trip suggest that the universe has a sense of humour when it exacted revenge after she launched the podcast. In this episode of the Thriving in Complexity podcast, Susanne provides a simple definition of complexity and shares a story about how the universe decided to teach her a lesson in complexity. Even if you don’t realise it, complexity is a part of life. It affects how your decisions - from the small to the large - are made. With understanding and practice, you can learn to find your way through complexities and thrive despite them. So what are you waiting for? Join Susanne on this journey of learning about the different ways of managing in the face of complexity. Gain insights and find out how to thrive in a complex world.
12:37 12/12/22
011: Embracing Possibility in Complexity with Helen Palmer
When faced with complexity we tend to try and predict what will happen in the future rather than embrace the possibility adjacent to our current situation. In this episode of the Thriving in Complexity podcast, Susanne speaks with Helen Palmer about holding space so people can be present, embrace our past in ways that serve us into the future, learn from the people around us, let go and allow new possibilities to emerge. Helen believes that people have a lot of potential locked up and unavailable to make a positive impact and she’s motivated to do something about this. Helen helps people learn so something different is possible. She is also the founder of the company Questo and the co-organiser of the premier Cynefin Meetup in Australia. There are certain novel situations that only arise in complexity and when we’re present in the moment, we can be curious about what’s going on in reality. Although we have no control over the future, we can explore how we influence it in the present. However, if we focus too much on a specific goal, or destination, we turn our filters in such a way that will only see certain things, which is the antithesis of curiosity. If you’re curious, have a listen to this episode!
67:16 12/5/22
010: Why Struggle Helps Us Get Stronger with Paul Atherton
Our struggles help us get stronger, whether lifting weights at the gym or finding our way through a big challenge at work. Embracing that struggle as an opportunity to learn helps us develop our anti-fragility. In this episode of the Thriving in Complexity podcast, Susanne talks to Paul Atherton, an ex-Wall Street adviser on a mission to help people win back their financial power. Paul worked for Wall Street for 25 years before deciding to found That Wall Street Guy. Paul shares insights from the complex world of finance that anybody can apply to help them thrive in the complexity of everyday life. So check out this episode if you want to know how to be open to opportunities and respond when they come along.
44:49 11/28/22
009: Why You Can’t Go Wrong Doing Right with Chris Tanti
In this episode of the Thriving in Complexity podcast, Susanne talks to Chris Tanti, an accomplished CEO both in Australia and the United States who has worked across mental health, disability and aged care. Currently, he is the CEO of the Leukemia Foundation. Chris shares his insights on how to thrive in complexity and how we works towards a better vision of the future.. He also talks about how important it is to have a clear purpose in life and shares his own personal story of how he found his purpose. With his extensive experience in the corporate sector, Chris is sure to provide some valuable insights on how to thrive in complexity. Listen to this episode to find out more!
57:31 11/21/22
008: The Way You Race is the Way You Pace as a Leader with Sally Foley-Lewis
In this episode of the Thriving in Complexity podcast, Susanne talks to Sally Foley-Lewis, a global, multi-award-winning speaker, facilitator, author and coach. With her extensive leadership background, Sally has been helping middle managers around the world to lead with impact. Sally shares her insights on how to help middle managers embrace influence over control, avoid delegation traps, ask questions and give their teams the gift of time to think. With her passion for leadership, Sally is someone you don't want to miss. Tune in now to learn why self-leadership matters.
47:55 11/14/22
007: Shifting In The Face of Complexity as a Board Director with Kerryn Newton
In this episode of the Thriving in Complexity podcast, Susanne talks to Kerryn Newton, the CEO of Directors Australia, a board performance specialist firm. Kerryn has over 25 years of experience working in different legal, management and commercial roles in both private and public settings. Kerryn shares her insights on the role of directors, the challenges they face, and how they can create value for their organizations. She also provides advice on how to build an effective board that can thrive in today's complex business environment. Given her line of business, it is only fitting that Kerryn offers some tips on how you can get the most out of your board meetings. Listen to this episode to find out more.
42:08 11/7/22
006: Why, When Things Go Wrong, You Have To Acknowledge And Name It, with Helen Poropat
When things go wrong, you must make space for the voices of the silent because they often have good insights into complex situations. In this episode of the Thriving in Complexity podcast, Susanne talks with Helen Poropat, an experienced mediator with extensive experience in governing non-profit organisations, including Domino’s Give for Good, Relations Australia (Queensland) and the National Education and Employment Foundation. Helen shares her insights about how to help non-profit organisations achieve impact by building strong teams and focusing on the value of voices and relationships. According to her, having people with the right mix of skills and perspectives on board is essential, as they are the ones who will make things happen. So if you’re interested in learning more about what it takes to help a non-profit make a difference, this episode is for you!
45:59 10/31/22
005: How OODA Loops and Sensemaking help you Navigate Complexity with Clifford Morgan
Life is full of uncertainties, complexities, and constant changes. It can be compared to a battlefield where one must be trained and prepared to face whatever happens next. With all the complexities that surround our lives, we can forget there is still value in developing a plan, while we keep looking for available options and ultimately, keeping it simple. In this episode of the Thriving in Complexity podcast, Susanne chats with Clifford Morgan, who is an Organisational Psychologist who also served in the Royal Australian Air Force. His wealth of experience helps clients achieve personal and corporate goals and fulfill the potential of their organisations. Clifford’s expertise is strengthened by his military background and psychology training, and he shares how this knowledge can help people become effective and transformational leaders in a changing environment. He believes that leaders have the capacity to make others a better version of themselves while helping them to navigate complexity. If you want to know more about how you can apply proven military techniques to respond to complexity and become a coaching leader, this episode is for you!
44:52 10/24/22
004: Why Culture in Health Matters With Kathy Campbell
It’s important to establish a learning culture where an organization acknowledges mistakes and a certain level of openness is enforced so processes are improved and mistakes are worked on. We want people who make mistakes to own up and learn before it becomes a bigger issue. However, it does not mean we should not hold people accountable for mistakes when that is warranted. When people, including the media, make a big deal about all the mistakes that have been made, we encourage people to push them under the rug and pretend they did not happen. When that happens, people do not learn and improve. In this episode of the Thriving in Complexity podcast, Susanne speaks with Kathy Campbell, an experienced non-executive director. Kathy is currently a Director on the Board of the Brisbane North Primary Health Network (PHN) and the Wide Bay Hospital and Health Service (HHS). She is also qualified accountant (FCPA and FCA) and a Fellow of the Australasian Institute of Digital Health. Kathy shares her learnings from working across complex health systems. We cover the challenges associated with scaling projects, the benefits of thinking systemically, avoiding blame cultures, and engaging with consumers and other stakeholders. If you’re wanting to get a better understanding of how people governing our health systems think, you should enjoy this episode.
44:31 10/17/22
003: Dealing with Uncertainty and Ambiguity with Kerryn Fewster
In today's world, it's more important than ever to be able to deal with uncertainty and ambiguity. With the pace of change accelerating, and the amount of information we're bombarded with increasing exponentially, it's becoming increasingly difficult to know what's true and what's not. The ability to deal with uncertainty and ambiguity is therefore a critical skill for anyone who wants to stay ahead of the curve. In this episode of the Thriving in Complexity podcast, Susanne talks with Kerryn Fewster, the founder and director of consultancy Change2020. In the past 25 years, Kerryn has dedicated her time working with Australian business leaders to help them manage workplace disruption. Kerryn shares her insights on the importance of embracing uncertainty and ambiguity, and how to develop the skill set to thrive in a complex world. According to her, the key is to have a "growth mindset" and to be comfortable with not knowing the answer. Uncertainty and ambiguity can be difficult to deal with, but remember that they're also a part of life. By staying flexible, present-focused, and accepting of the situation, you can make it through anything that comes your way. So if you're looking for ways to deal with uncertainty and ambiguity in your own life, or want to learn more about how to thrive in a complex world, this episode is for you!
48:11 10/10/22
002: The Power of Aspiring to Fail with Stan Gallo
I'm sure we've all heard the saying, "You have to risk it to get the biscuit." It's a popular quote for a reason—it rings true. To be successful in life, you can't be afraid to take risks. You have to be willing to put yourself out there and aspire to fail. Sounds counterintuitive, right? But it's not. When you're constantly pushing yourself outside of your comfort zone, you're opening yourself up to new opportunities and learning experiences. And that's what leads to success. In this episode of the Thriving in Complexity podcast, Susanne talks with Stan Gallo, who is a partner with the Forensic Services team at BDO in Brisbane and has over 30 years of experience in law enforcement and professional services. Stan shares his insights on the value of taking risks, and how this can lead to individual and organisational success. He also discusses the importance of being open-minded and curious, and how these qualities have helped him in his career.  So if you're looking for some inspiration to take more risks in your life, or you're simply curious about Stan's interesting life, this episode is for you! 
47:57 10/4/22
001: How to Deal with Complex Situations with Graeme Thom
No one said life would be easy, but sometimes it feels like we are faced with insurmountable challenges. How do we deal with complex situations that seem to have no clear solution? Whether it's a tricky work situation, a confusing relationship, or just a tough decision to make, complex scenarios can be overwhelming and frustrating. Besides, when we're feeling stuck, it's hard to see the wood for the trees. In this episode of the Thriving in Complexity podcast, Susanne talks with Graeme Thom, who has served as a fire officer for more than 40 years and has been awarded the highest level of recognition granted to a fire officer and received the Australian Fire Service Medal (AFSM). He is currently the founder and Executive Director of the International Emergency Services Speakers Agency (IESSA). Graeme shares his insights on how to deal with complex challenges, both professionally and personally. According to him, dealing with complex situations starts with understanding that there is no single right or wrong answer, but multiple possible solutions. What's more, it's important to be aware of our own biases and assumptions, as well as the impact of our words and actions on others. So if you're feeling stuck in a challenging situation, this episode is for you.
53:27 10/4/22
000: The Beauty of Things Not Working in Your Favour
We hope that life will take a certain pathway because we assume that is where we’re meant to be. But life gives us unexpected twists and turns that we end up in an unfamiliar journey. But as we go along with the uncertainty, we discover more about ourselves. We unravel our skills and potentials and this helps us decide whether we want to pursue a specific path or not. On the first episode of the Thriving in Complexity podcast, I would like to share a glimpse of who I am and the reason why I started this podcast. I’ve learned early on that life doesn’t always work out according to our expectations; however, there’s still beauty when things don’t go in our favour. I’ll share some of the complexities I’ve experienced in the workplace and how these made me realise what I want and don’t want to do in regard to my career path, so let’s dive in.
12:57 10/4/22