Monthly Archives: August 2014

The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge!

?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????It’s been on television and in newspapers across the world, it’s all over social media…and it’s important!

The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge has been doing the rounds to raise awareness of ALS, or Motor Neurone Disease (MND) as it is known in Australia.

I am fully aware that there are many organisations in Australia and overseas who need funds to support their staff and programs and enhance research, I donate to many of them each year.  I am also aware that you don’t need to pour a bucket of iced water over your head in order to make a donation – but we do love a challenge and if it raises awareness for any terminal disease – then I say “why not?”

The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge strikes a chord with me as MND is a cause extremely close to my heart…my Dad was diagnosed with MND in early 1984.

It started with some weakness in his hands as he tinkered away in his workshop, very rapidly we saw a fit and energetic 33 year old deteriorate to having to use a walking cane, a motorised wheelchair (while he could still use the controls) and ultimately saw him confined to a wheelchair and totally reliant on others for his daily care.

Some of my more vivid memories from that time include moving into a house with ramps and wide door ways to accommodate the wheelchair, purchasing a water bed (since it made rolling Dad in the middle of the night a little easier on my Mum and the nursing staff who stayed at our house on many nights), and turning the pages of the newspaper and helping to feed my Dad – since that is pretty much all I could do at ten years of age.

My Dad passed away on 21st November, 1985 just 11 days before my 11th birthday…

For this reason, I am excited that the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge has raised the profile of MND.

Every piece of knowledge I gain, every story I hear, sees the compassion I have for those who are living with, or have died with, MND increase…I can only hope that you too feel this way.

If you would like to support MND in Australia (with or without the ice bucket!), follow this link , you can also read about the Association and their research.

PS In case you are wondering, no, I haven’t poured a bucket of ice water over my head…I prefer my ice in a bucket like the photograph attached to this post…but I have donated some cash, and I encourage you all to do the same if you can!



Get your deductions right!

??????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????I’m sure we all know by now that there are certain expenses that can be claimed as a tax deduction and certain expenses that cannot be claimed as a tax deduction.

But if you happen to be unsure, the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) website has plenty of information available, or of course you can ask your trusty tax agent!

The following is a comprehensive list of particular occupations for which the ATO have released individual Tax Fact Sheets regarding the deductions which may be available:

  • Adult industry workers
  • Airline employees
  • Australian Defence Force members
  • Building and construction employees
  • Business professionals
  • Cleaners
  • Earthmoving plant operators
  • Education professionals
  • Electricians
  • Engineers
  • Factory workers
  • Fitness and sporting industry employees
  • Flight attendants
  • Guards and security employees
  • Hairdressers
  • Hospitality industry employees
  • IT Professionals
  • Journalists
  • Lawyers
  • Mechanical, automotive and electrical tradespersons
  • Mechanics
  • Mining site employees
  • Nurses, midwives and direct carers
  • Performing artists
  • Plumbers
  • Police officers
  • Real estate industry employees
  • Sales and marketing managers
  • Sales representatives
  • Shop assistants
  • Teachers
  • Travel agents
  • Truck drivers

I encourage you to take a look at the fact sheet applicable to your industry if it is listed, it can make tax time so much easier for you!

And if your industry isn’t listed, don’t panic. you can use the principles of general deductions as a guideline, or as I mentioned earlier, contact your tax agent.




???????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve had to say “Pardon?” in my life…take it from me, at times, being hearing impaired sucks!

As a “young” professional businesswoman, one of the things I detest doing is admitting I have a hearing impairment.  Don’t get me wrong, there’s no shame in having a hearing impairment…but for me, it’s almost invisible…so unless I make a point of it, few people around me would even know it exists.

Hearing Awareness Week 2014 has kicked off and runs through until next Saturday 30th August.

According to , hearing loss can be caused by hereditary conditions, infectious diseases, prolonged exposure to excessive noise or the effects of aging…and across the globe, 360 million people are affected. Plus, only 10-20% of those who might benefit from a hearing aid actually wear one!

Take a look at the Hearing Awareness Week website to find out What’s On this week, there’s also some fact sheets and resources your might find interesting.

If you find yourself employing or working with someone who is hearing impaired, Job Access has some great tools for workplace modification, and my key communication tips are:

  • speak clearly and loudly (without shouting)
  • avoid mumbling and covering your mouth when you speak
  • look at the person, and
  • eliminate background noise if possible

I thank you in advance for being considerate and patient




The key to success…

????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????So very sorry if the title of this post is a little misleading…since I hope we all know there is no one key…to success?

In my mind though, one of the keys to success is to continually update your knowledge.

Whether that be professional knowledge or product knowledge…with the fast pace of the world today, it is imperative to stay up to date.

As such, I am spending this weekend at the Hilton Hotel in Sydney to attend the Reckon Annual Conference.

The program on offer is separated into two streams, one for Business Owners and one for Accountants, and with over 30 sessions to choose from, there’s a little something for everyone!

I have a number of “must attend” sessions on my list, in particular:

  • automated anytime access to client data
  • geek speak – tips and traps for Reckon Accounts Hosted and Reckon One
  • build a future proofed accounting firm, and
  • Reckon Elite update

All of the sessions I attend will increase my knowledge and ultimately help me to service my clients better…and that is always my aim!

Of course there’s the added bonus of meeting business owners and accountants from all over the country…and the nearby shopping…did someone say QVB and The Strand Arcade?



Note: this post is not sponsored by The Hilton Sydney or Reckon and is not an endorsement of either organisation, it is simply my opinion.