Nous comes together to take the next step in our reconciliation journey

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A longstanding tradition at Nous is to come together every six months for to connect, learn, reflect and collectively focus on our strategic priorities for the months ahead. These gatherings, known as Nous Days, have been happening since Nous was established more than 20 years ago.

This year we focused on different priorities in each part of the world, united by a global strategy. In Australia, the Nous Days theme was Reconciliation, as we continue our reconciliation journey through our Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP).

The two-day Nous Days, held in Naarm (Melbourne), began with a Welcome to Country and smoking ceremony by Uncle Perry Wandin. This was followed by a yidaki performance by Ben Moodie.

Facilitators Rodney Williams and Davina McArthur then explored what reconciliation means to them personally and professionally as Nous Principals, Co-Chairs of our RAP Working Group and Co-leads of our First Nations projects. In their discussion, Rodney and Davina considered what reconciliation means for our business, our projects and our clients, and how our people can support it.

Soon Nous will release our first RAP at the Stretch level, which will require us to better incorporate reconciliation into our business as usual.

Nous Chief People Officer Sally Pritchard said: “Nous is a collaborative, purpose-driven, high-performing organisation, so Nousers value the opportunity to connect, explore, challenge and learn. This year our Reconciliation theme enabled Nousers to build cultural awareness, acknowledge and celebrate diversity, and explore positive impact in the context of reconciliation.

“Spending time deeply exploring this important topic highlighted for all Nousers how we live our values and made us proud to work for an organisation that demonstrates curiosity, respect and understanding, while challenging ourselves individually and collectively to do better.”

At Nous Days, Nousers enjoyed a gallery display and short films, which were designed to cultivate understanding of First Nations culture and the stories of our First Nations Nousers and allies.

Tony Briggs, artistic director of the Birrarangga Film Festival, which celebrates Indigenous films, introduced five films and shared his experience of working in the film industry and establishing the festival.

Also on the Nous Days program was a panel discussion featuring Nousers Tim Orton, Taliah King, Monique Jackson, Rodney Williams, Connor Haddad and Carlos Blanco, who shared personal experiences and their aspirations for how we can work towards achieving Nous’ vision for reconciliation.

Panel discussion featuring Nousers Tim Orton, Taliah King, Monique Jackson, Rodney Williams, Connor Haddad and Carlos Blanco
Panellists Davina McArthur, Tim Orton, Taliah King, Monique Jackson, Connor Haddad, Carlos Blanco and Rodney Williams

After the event, Connor said: “To see the Reconciliation theme be celebrated at the largest-ever Nous Days in 2023 was personally rewarding. I have always felt that Nous Days strengthens and extends my connection to my fellow Nousers. But as a proud Anaiwan man and the RAP Program Manager, Nous Days 2023 established a deeper connection between me, Nous and my colleagues – a connection that will stay with me forever.”

Nous Days supported local and First Nations businesses, from providing printing materials to entertainment, in line with our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Procurement Strategy.

After the event, Nous Managing Principal and CEO Tim Orton said he was energised by the engagement of Nousers in reconciliation and their passion to do more.

“For the past 24 years we have been coming together to take stock of our progress and set strategic objectives to guide us in achieving even greater levels of positive influence,” he said. “It is heartening to see the progress we have made in our reconciliation journey. I look forward to the release of our Stretch RAP later this year. It is the next chapter in this important journey.”