For twenty years I have worked at the intersection of screen production and creative business practice. I believe that healthy workplace cultures are vital to the future of our work and they begin with brave leadership.
In 2020, after many years juggling productions with family life and seeing work colleagues (and myself), struggle with the pressures of the industry, I have been fuelled by a desire to apply my skills in a new direction. I have recently become an accredited Mental Health First Aider, and am partnering with industry to deliver much needed support services which help improve the way we work together.
My deep understanding of what makes a creative team function was gained through working on-set as a script supervisor for ten years and a further eight years in production roles with some of Australia’s premier drama and documentary teams.
My passion for integrating process design with story telling was born whilst working with some of the best minds in the country, as Digital Media Manager for The Creative Industries Innovation Centre (CIIC). This then led to me graduating the Australian Film Television and Radio School with a Master of Arts - Screen Arts and Business in 2013, where I investigated and applied Design Thinking Methodology to the ‘wicked’ problems of the screen industry.
The Australian screen business landscape has changed significantly over the past decade. Producers (Production Houses) now operate with greater awareness about the value of healthy workplace cultures, but also under more intense scrutiny from industry bodies and financing partners.
The pressure to balance mandatory compliance with organisational wellbeing can be overwhelming for the already busy producer /creative business owner.
My experience working in business support services and the Australian screen sector has given me a unique perspective on the daily challenges faced by companies striving to balance good people management, with creative and commercial concerns.
On 26th August I will be co-presenting an online seminar about Creating Healthy Workplaces as part of the AFTRS Short, Sharp and Immediately Useful Seminar, with Cultures of Wellness expert Kyla Tustin.
This seminar will help you address critical elements for implementing the mental health and wellbeing measures required to meet a COVID-Safe workplace. More importantly, you will learn how to go beyond compliance and develop the leadership skills that create a psychologically safe work culture within your production company or production team, no matter how big or small.
In addition to workshops, I am available to consult with businesses and individuals to help assess, design and implement frameworks that will ensure the success of your wellbeing policies. Contact me below or directly to find out more.
I am excited by the opportunity to help creative businesses design healthy workplace cultures that nurture their people, projects and their bottom line.
Margaret is a consummate professional - genuinely dedicated to the film/digital industry, energetic and persistent in reaching a goal. She's one of those rare people who have both the vision and the tenacity to actually make things happen.
Abigail Thomas, General Manager, SBS On Demand
at Special Broadcasting Service (SBS) Australia