A year of transformation, challenge and unity

A year of transformation, challenge and unity

A year of transformation, challenge and unity

November 25, 2020

I think we can all agree that we are ready to put 2020 in the rear-view mirror. With that said, as we reflect on the year that was, the ingenuity, strength and creativity of people have meant there have been some highlights throughout the year.

While a number of the Drinks Association events were cancelled due to COVID-19, the Create Difference workstream hosted a marvellous International Women’s Day event on 8th March which we were incredibly lucky to hold with government restrictions coming into play three days later. With over 400 people in attendance, we were delighted to hear presentations from TV presenter Erin Molan and her father, retired Major General, and now Senator, Jim Molan. Followed by a thought-provoking industry panel, it was an enjoyable day and successful event.

The 4th annual Inclusive Leadership Program launched in May 2020 with 38 participants across 12 organisations. As the program was about to kick off and the country went into lockdown, the Serendis team did a quick pivot to be able to deliver the program virtually, which not only allowed the program to proceed seemlessly, but facilitated greater representation from interstate participants.

Despite the significant turmoil of the year, a real highlight was the engagement of industry participants across the Drinks Association Forums. To support each other through an unknown and unprecedented environment, the HRD Forum met weekly via video conference through the months of March – August, while the Supply Chain Forum communicated monthly and the Credit Managers moved to bimonthly engagement. Through this regular dialogue, members discussed common challenges, shared solutions and ideas and took strength from one another.

The Leverage Difference and See Difference workstreams collaborated to launch the first ever industry Scorecard displaying the current performance to these gender and policy targets, while also developing Level one of the Industry Diversity and Inclusion toolkit. The toolkit will be further developed in 2021, includes four levels to support member companies on their Diversity and Inclusion journeys, as well as significant best practice scenarios for organisations to adopt.

The Drinks Association’s annual celebration of industry excellence, the Australian Drinks Awards, was celebrated virtually for the first time in its eight-year history on July 30, 2020.
The ceremony, hosted by TV personality Shelly Horton, focussed on the Supplier Category with four trophies being awarded: Supplier of the Year, Most Improved Supplier of the Year, Supply Chain Management and the new Category Management Award.

A sincere thank you to our Board, Category One members, Corporate and Commercial Partners and Associate members for their ongoing support of the Drinks Association and contribution to our great industry. 

Our industry is incredibly unique with the Drinks Association operating as an umbrella to facilitate cross industry dialogue and connection. With the support and guidance of our Chair, Ralph Dunning, the Executive Board and the full Board, the Drinks Association continues to successfully provide an environment for our industry, our members and our people to flourish.

The Drinks Association offices will be closed from Wednesday 23rd December 5pm through until Monday 4th January 9am but if you have any urgent enquiries please call our office number 02 9415 1199 and we will respond as soon as possible.

I hope you all have a wonderful and safe festive season and hope that 2021 brings good times.

Georgia Lennon - CEO

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