‘‘BEAUTIFUL location but, tired and outdated ... this would have been fantastic 30 years ago ... that place has got so much potential ... but.’’
The online reviews of Newcastle hotels and restaurants showed the three women behind new venture Shift Collective that their idea had potential.
Shift Collective is a collaboration between Design Bug directors Kristy and Rebecca Russell and interior designer-come-etiquette coach Helen Brunsdon.
Together they promise to completely make-over their clients’ presentation, from the toilets to the menus to the staff’s manners.
‘‘People forget their staff are part of their brand,’’ says graphic designer Kristy Russell. She and her sister have been creating branding for years but felt frustrated that the new looks they created didn’t always translate to other parts of their clients’ businesses.
‘‘There were always holes, one side of the business looked nice and glossy ... then we may have gone into the office and the uniforms weren’t right, or the staff didn’t greet us in a professional way,’’ Ms Russell says.
It was after the Gunnedah sisters worked on a new look for Jayes Travel while Helen Brunsdon’s Swish Concepts Interior Design was updating the interior, that the idea for Shift Collective was born.
Ms Brunsdon, who is also the director of Swish Etiquette, says it’s important for businesses to get smarter if they are to compete with new ventures in Newcastle.
‘‘The newer, more cosmopolitan Newcastle that we seem to be getting physically sometimes hasn’t related to our casual lifestyle,’’ she says.
As part of this collaboration she will coach staff in basic manners and customer service.
A NEW Lambton home designed by local architect Chris McBriarty, has trumped 18 finalists at the Lower Hunter Urban Design Awards.
According to Kayla Volker from Cessnock City Council, it’s rare for a residential project to take out the top honour.
“The jury were extremely impressed with the creative and clever thinking that went into all parts of the building’s design.’’
IN 2054 the future general manager of Austube Mills, the former Tubemakers, will open a time capsule.
Inside the one-metre long galvanised pipe capsule he, or maybe she, will find a snapshot of the business as it was in 2014, as the company turned 80. General manager Richard Clement says it would have been fantastic if today he had opened a capsule from 40 years ago.
As part of the 80-year celebration for the company that has become Australia’s largest steel pipe manufacturer, acting lord mayor Brad Luke (a former Tubemakers apprentice himself) accepted a piece of the signature DuraGal coated steel for the Newcastle Museum.
NEWCASTLE Christmas puddings were a hit at a recent trade fair in Hong Kong.
Cardiff-based Hunter Heritage Gourmet Foods, manufacturers of Pudding Lady and Simply Stirred products, were part of Australia’s offering at the international food expo.
Hunter Heritage Gourmet Food’s marketing manager Ann Cummings says the event was ‘‘unbelievably busy’’. The company is following up leads from several countries.
THE Commonwealth Bank’s new Marketown branch opened today.
New services available include iPad net-bank kiosks to access internet banking, free Wi-Fi , and coin-counting machines.
FOR Susie Russell, a long struggle recovering from a marriage break-down and a divorce led to the idea for her business in divorce mentoring.
Ms Russell, who has professional qualifications in conflict management and resolution and will launch a self-help book on recovering from divorce this year, says the response to her new venture has been overwhelming.
Tuesday: Demystifying Marketing. A practical approach to marketing for small business – where time and money are often in short supply. The Business Centre, Newcastle, 5.30pm to 8pm. Book at: businesscentre.com.au or call 49257700.
Motor ambassador John Bowe and Solar Online Australia founder Brett Sutherland will speak at the Newcastle Business Club lunch, Harbourview Function Centre, 12.15pm to 2pm.
Business & Professional Women Maitland event with guest speaker Bridie Scott, Blackbird Cafe and Artisan Bakery, Maitland Gaol, 6.30pm. RSVP: Pam Menzies, 0432652836.
Wednesday: NSW Small Business commissioner Robyn Hobbs at South Rugby League Club, 7.15am to 9am, 46 Llewellyn St, Merewether.