The New Footloose Movie Trailer

Writer/Director Craig Brewer (Hustle & Flow, Black Snake Moan) will deliver a new take on the much loved 1984 classic film, Footloose.

Ren MacCormack (the role made famous by Kevin Bacon in the 1984 movie) will be played by newcomer Kenny Wormald. The movie also stars Dennis Quaid as Reverend Shaw Moore and Julianne Hough who plays the minister’s troubled daughter, Ariel.

Footloose will be released in Australian cinemas on October 6 2011.


Footloose-Trailer by Paramount_Australia

The Hoopla! Wendy Harmer’s new online forum for Aussie women

The Hoopla (thehoopla.com.au) has officially launched as an intelligent, entertaining online forum and news magazine designed for Australian women.

The brainchild of media and entertainment personality Wendy Harmer, publisher Jane Waterhouse, and respected editor Caroline Roessler, The Hoopla will answer the need for a smart‐but‐fun forum and news source that speaks and listens to the views of Australian women aged over 35.

“Increasingly, mature and thoughtful Aussie women find themselves out of the loop in the current media offerings,” said Harmer. “We are not catered for in commercial talk radio and marginalised online. So, heeding the demand from a legion of women, we have created The Hoopla.”

Harmer and her ABC radio partner Angela Catterns will be offering their new weekly, free podcast “In the Loop” on the site.

Also contributing their views in an exclusive “On the Highwire” segment will be a group of admired Australian women, including: Mary Moody, Natasha Stott‐Despoja, Kerry Chikarovski, Carmen Lawrence, Jane Clifton, Cheryl Kernot, Catharine Lumby, Noeline Brown, Jean Kittson and the esteemed Ethel Chop!

“We wanted to create a forum for news, opinion, advice, stories and create a community that connects these women and shares their passion and interests,” said Hoopla co‐founder Jane Waterhouse.

Harmer, Waterhouse and Roessler have created a unique destination in the online media landscape for Australian women.

“The Hoopla is there for women to connect, have a laugh, discuss the issues that matter (and those that don’t) but, most importantly, share their lives with other women from their generation,” said Harmer.

“It’s all about celebrating our unique voice.”

Visit the website at www.thehoopla.com.au

2011 Used Car Safety Ratings

NRMA Motoring & Services and the NSW Centre for Road Safety have released safety ratings for used cars involved in crashes, and introduced a Safe Pick rating for the very best vehicles in each category.

NRMA vehicle safety expert Jack Haley said the annual Used Car Safety Ratings provided consumers with essential information about the safety performance of vehicles in protecting drivers in a crash.

“The Used Car Safety Ratings are an excellent resource for motorists looking to purchase a safe second-hand vehicle because they measure the safety performance of these cars in real crashes,” Mr Haley said.

“This year we have introduced a Safe Pick rating for the very best vehicles which, as well as protecting their driver in crashes, also minimise injury to other road users,” Mr Haley said.

“A carefully selected group of 20 vehicles scored the Safe Pick rating of which 13 were small, medium or large vehicles. The two large vehicles that scored a Safe Pick rating were Australian-built, being the recent model Ford Falcon and Toyota Camry, which is a credit to those local manufacturers.”

NSW Centre for Road Safety Director Dr Soames Job said that buying a safe used car does not have to be expensive.

“Many of the safest cars in each market group are relatively affordable,” Dr Job said.

Some examples include:

  • Volvo S40 1997-2004 from $4,500
  • Peugeot 307 2001-2009 from $6,000
  • Honda Civic 2006-2009 from $11,000
  • Volkswagen Golf 1999-2009 from $5,000
  • Mazda 6 2002-2007 from $8,000 Toyota Camry 2006-2009 from $11,500
  • Honda CRV 2002-2006 from $9,000

“Used car buyers still need to be very stringent when selecting a vehicle as 38 models rated excellent and 40 rated good. Conversely, 18 models rated in the poor category and 47 very poor,” Dr Job said.

The ratings were calculated by the Monash University Accident Research Centre which analysed injury outcomes to more than 5.6 million people involved in crashes and 1.2 million injured road users between 1982 and 2009.

Dr Job also said that if the community is serious about reducing road trauma, consumers need to consider how any vehicle we purchase protects all road users, not just its own occupants.

“Vehicles identified as a Safe Pick provide best possible injury protection to all road users including their own occupants, occupants of other vehicles, pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists in a crash.”

“We all want to drive a car that keeps us safe in a crash but we also want everyone else to drive a car that keeps us safe if they crash into us. These ratings with the Safe Pick label help motorists to choose vehicles that achieve both these objectives,” Dr Job concluded.

The 2011 Used Car Safety Ratings brochure will shortly be available at NRMA and RTA branches or visit one of these websites: www.mynrma.com.au and www.rta.nsw.gov.au.

Photo credit: steven Husk – Fotolia.com

How To Get a Raise by Increasing Your Office Marketability

Even in uncertain economic times, it makes sense to market your skills and talents and to showcase them to best effect within the office environment. Women can increase their marketability in a number of ways including working toward an advanced degree, networking with others in the field, taking ownership of various aspects of the job and maintaining superior work habits throughout the business day. By incorporating some of these ideas into your daily office routine, you can achieve more and ensure you’re your accomplishments are recognised when evaluation time rolls around.

Further your education
Most professional jobs require a Bachelor’s degree in a relevant field at a minimum. Completing an advanced degree in the field of endeavour can demonstrate commitment to the career path and an interest in bettering yourself on behalf of your company. The Australian Bureau of Statistics indicated that, as of 2009, 27% of all people aged 25 to 64 held higher education qualifications and 63% held either vocational qualifications or higher education qualifications. This figure continues to rise annually, illustrating the competitive nature of the modern workplace and highlighting the necessity to set yourself apart from the crowd in the workplace. Online courses make achieving an advanced degree easier and more convenient than ever before, so completing that Master’s or Doctoral degree need not wait any longer.

Networking
By maintaining close contact with other like-minded individuals within your organization and in your career field, you can take advantage of the power of networking to jump-start your career. Whether you seek a mentoring relationship or simply want to compare notes with other women in the same field of endeavour, you can often obtain valuable advice and feedback that can help you get ahead in your current job.

Own your own job
Taking responsibility for your job duties and pulling your own weight is an important way to market yourself in the workplace. By demonstrating a willingness to accept the blame when things go wrong as well as the praise when things go well, you can establish a solid reputation within the company and ensure that your hard work is noticed. Another element of owning your own work is to maintain records on what you accomplish each week; rather than waiting for your supervisor to evaluate you, evaluate yourself and your performance and look for areas in which you can improve. This can help you develop the skills you need to achieve more and be promotable within the company.

Maintain good work habits
Dressing for the job you want is only part of the equation for success in the workplace. A willingness to work late and put in extra time when job responsibilities require it is one way to demonstrate your commitment to the company and its goals. Practicing professional courtesy and proper business decorum at all times is also an essential element of workplace behaviour and can help you avoid making a bad impression on those you most need to impress.

By showing a willingness to put the needs of the company first, you can often get the raise and the promotion you need to get ahead in the business world. This can help you get the most from your career and achieve the position and recognition you deserve.

Dunya Carter is a marketing specialist from Brisbane, Australia who writes articles for several blogs in her free time.

Effective Preparation for the First Trip with Baby

You probably never thought that you would have to put so much preparation into a simple trip, that is until you had a baby! All the rules are different now and you find yourself staring at a suitcase and all the baby gear that you use on a regular basis. How in the world are you going to bring everything you need and still fit your family in the car?

The notion of baby’s first trip can be filled with great excitement, but it can also be filled with a lot of anxiety as well. If you find yourself with this mix of emotions (and probably a few more), then just know that you are not alone. The preparation for baby’s first trip can be the biggest step in travel, so it helps to break it down and work through the details one at a time.
Make Yourself One Big Master List

No matter how organized of a woman you may be, having a baby can put that to the test. When it comes to travel, the very first thing that you have to do is create a list. This should cover everything that you need or consider a necessity, as well as items that are more luxury based or “nice to have” items. Break it down into neat categories to make the process of packing much easier. List everything out in intricate detail and remember that you can always take things away but it’s a lot harder to pack stuff in after the fact.

Here are some helpful categories:

Feeding Baby: Be sure to include formula, bottles, baby food, spoons, snacks such as Cheerios, cereal bars, puffs, or anything else that you are using to feed baby these days.

Diapering Baby: This sounds easy enough, but you need to remember diapers, wipes, ointment or diaper cream if a rash appears, a changing pad, and cloth diapers.

Changing Baby: Let’s face it, your baby will go through plenty of clothes just like any other day so bring plenty of pajamas, onesies, socks, pants/shorts/skirts, tops, and any special items such as bathing suit or jacket depending on the weather and location.

The All Important Baby Gear: This is where you have to make some decisions depending on your mode of travel but it’s safe to say that you will need a car seat and stroller of some kind. If you are going by car then you may have room to pack a portable swing or pack and play but it all depends on where you are staying. Think through the sleeping arrangements and what you can do to keep baby busy and then use your judgment based on how much room you have. This will make this questionable step that much easier.

Take It One Thing at a Time
I think that most of us moms that have been through it have found that if you compartmentalize it, then the job is so much easier. For example if you pack one small tote bag with all of the food, spoons, bottles, and cups that you will need then it’s all in one spot. This technique works quite well for each and every item that you are going to pack because then you can cross if off the list, everything in that category is all together, and it’s easy to find on the other end. Try this tactic for tackling all of your baby items and you might just find that it helps you to get organized for all of the family packing.

The trick is to group things together based on the need for baby. Don’t go crazy and pack too much but do be sure to remember everything that you need so that you don’t have to worry about it on the other end. If you are going to stay at a relative’s house then it’s easy enough to go pick up a few items that you need. However if you are going to a more remote destination or a resort of some type, you may need to bring everything that you need all in one shot.

Many mums find that rather than lying everything out in one big pile and getting more and more overwhelmed by the minute that it can work better to take it one grouping at a time. This ensures that you cross off everything in that category and that you can ensure that you have missed nothing. The first trip is always the hardest in terms of preparation, and if you follow these tips it will be smooth sailing. From here on out you will be a pro and travelling with your baby will be fun and easy!

Written by Colm Byrne for The Fairview Hotel a great place to stay with your family when in Ireland.

Photo credit: Joanna Zielinska – Fotolia.com

Campaign to get rid of 'part-time work'

Claire Braund, Executive Director of Women on Boards, says the term ‘part-time work’ should be removed from the workforce vocabulary because of the destructive effect it has on people’s careers. Ms Braund is on a campaign to have the term ‘part-time’ replaced by ‘working flexibly at X per cent’.

“This would start to change the perception that part-time workers are somehow less serious about their work and career and just there to do the job and go home,” she said.

“The reality is often very different with many employers knowing that so -called part-time workers are efficient, focused and often doing four days work and being paid for three. Unfortunately women are the most marginalised by this form of employment as they constitute 70.4% of all part-time employees* in the Australian workforce.”

Ms Braund suggests that using the term ‘working flexibly at X per cent’ for everyone – whether they be working at 150, 100 or 50 per cent – would help with the cultural transition to more flexible workplaces that integrated with the lives of their male and female employees.

“Whether we like it or not there are still a whole range of issues in the workplace where there is a gender gap – and this one of them.”

How to get to grips with this gender gap will be the focus of a series of workshops and business lunches being hosted by Women On Boards around Australia in August. The ThinkWomen 2011 business lunch will take a fresh look at building a culture where diverse groups can thrive and contribute to policies, practices and people that make a difference.

Cara Morton, Accenture’s Managing Director of Finance and Performance Management Consulting, will also share her leadership story including being mentored by Catriona Noble, the CEO of McDonalds in Australia on the Business Council of Australia’s ‘C Suite Project’ mentoring scheme.

For more information visit the website at: www.thinkwomen.com.au

* Source: ABS, Cat. 6202.0, Labour Force, Australia, Status by Sex – Trend, Table 1, April 2011′

Photo Credit: olly – Fotolia.com

Victoria's Small Business Festival


This information is brought to you by business.gov.au

Victoria’s Small Business Festival

Wednesday 20 July 2011

To celebrate the role of small business in Victoria, hundreds of small business events will be held throughout August as part of Victoria’s Small Business Festival.

From 1 – 31 August, events will focus on the theme of ‘Add One More Skill’ and provide attendees with inspiration, practical skills and information for starting, running and growing a business. Expert speakers will run many of the events and provide hands on learning and useful advice.

A free iPhone App for the festival is available for download, featuring the entire program of events and a helpful event planner.

Find out more on Victoria’s Small Business Festival, including the schedule of free and ticketed events by visiting the Business Victoria website.

New trade mark check


This information is brought to you by business.gov.au

New trade mark check

Monday 18 July 2011

TM Check is designed for use by business owners to help them more easily identify pending and registered trade marks which may be similar or identical to their proposed business name.

Choosing a business name that has already been trade marked can be a costly exercise – it could mean large legal bills, drawn out disputes and even the closure of your business.

For more information and to access TM check, visit the IP Australia website.

For more information on choosing and registering a business name, see our Register your business name page.

R&D Tax Credit open for consultation


This information is brought to you by business.gov.au

R&D Tax Credit open for consultation

Wednesday 13 July 2011

The R&D Tax Credit is now open for public consultation. If you’re a business owner or have a keen interest in this topic, you’re invited to have your say on how the R&D Tax Credit will be administered.

The R&D Tax Credit will replace the R&D Tax Concession, and will provide eligible companies with a tax offset for expenditure on eligible research and development activities. The R&D Tax Credit will apply to activities and expenditure in income years commencing on or after 1 July 2011. For activities undertaken in the period up to and including 30 June 2011, the R&D Tax Concession still applies.

As part of the consultation process, you can review the exposure draft regulations, the decision making principles and their accompanying explanatory statements. Closing date for submissions is 5 August 2011.

For further information, or to provide your feedback on the proposed R&D Tax Credit, visit our Business Consultation.

New financial year changes for NSW businesses


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New financial year changes for NSW businesses

Tuesday 05 July 2011

From 1 July 2011, changes will apply to payroll tax in NSW. This includes changes to the tax threshold and the introduction of the Jobs Action Plan rebate scheme.

From 1 July 2011 to 30 June 2012 the annual payroll tax threshold is $678 000.

The monthly threshold is:

  • $53 721 for 29 days
  • $55 574 for 30 days
  • $57 426 for 31 days.

The payroll tax rate is 5.45%.

The NSW Government is also introducing the Jobs Action Plan from 1 July as an incentive for businesses to employ more workers. If your business employs staff in positions that are new jobs, you may be eligible to receive a payroll tax rebate.

For more information on the threshold changes and to find out if you’re eligible for the Jobs Action Plan, visit the NSW Office of State Revenue website.