Turning Remote Work into A Long-term Competitive Advantage


Turning Remote Work into A Long-term Competitive Advantage

By , February 22, 2021
luke hurst

CEO of boutique productivity consultancy Building 20, Dr Luke Hurst joins this week’s instalment. Building 20 delivers custom training and culture change services, working with teams to accomplish difficult tasks faster and amplifying their attention. Luke initially got into productivity working on his PhD. He found that by gamifying the process using the Pomodoro Technique, his progress accelerated dramatically. This was the origin for Building 20, with Luke identifying a need for training dedicated to productivity in the workspace, particularly with SMEs.

In May, Building 20 surveyed 423 Australian office workers on how they adjusted to working remotely during the pandemic, as well as how the COVID-19 experience altered preferences and expectations about remote work going forward. Luke advocates that getting the hybrid model right between working at the office and working from home can be a real competitive advantage. This allows businesses to improve employee value proposition, as employees want an environment which is supportive of working not only time wise, but also location wise.

Luke identifies his career path as a random walk. He holds a PhD in Economics, was previously Director at strategy consulting firm Nous Group, and a Research Fellow at both Melbourne University and The Australian National University. He has published widely in leading business and academic publications, including the Australian Financial Review, Nikkei Asian Review and SMH/The Age. Building 20’s study on the effectiveness of working from home is available here.


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Craig West

Craig West

Executive Chairman | Succession Plus

Craig West is a strategic accountant with over 20 years of experience advising business owners. His background as a CPA in public practice has provided invaluable experience in the key issues of concern to business owners.

In March 2014, Craig was appointed Executive Chairman of the SME Association of Australia, Australia’s largest small business organisation representing over 300,000 business owners.

In October 2014, he was awarded the Exit Planner of the Year at the Exit Planning Institute Annual Conference in Texas, USA, due to his innovative development of an exit planning process to help business owners maximise business value and achieve a successful exit.

Craig’s proprietary structure - a Peak Performance Trust - has won the Australia-wide award for the Employee Share Ownership Plan of the year twice in four years.

In November 2018, Craig launched SME Experts in partnership with Mark Bouris’ Mentored on Podcast One and quickly grew the monthly podcast audience to over 26,500 downloads; in October 2019, he released a new podcast focused on medium-sized businesses - Mid-Market Matters.

In July 2021, Craig joined the NSW Committee for STEP (Society of Trust & Estate Practitioners) – focusing on advising families across generations.

Craig has also launched a SaaS platform, Capitaliz (which captures the 21-step process), to assist other advisers internationally deliver advisory services at scale.

In November 2021, Craig was appointed Executive Chairman of NSW Leaders, a business mentoring group for leading NSW businesses.

In July 2022, Craig West received the award of Doctor of Business Administration for his research thesis titled “Examination of the key factors driving business exit options in Australian Small and Medium Enterprises.”

Craig is passionate about encouraging business owners to think strategically, maximise the value of their business and achieve a successful exit.

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