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Wanted Good Asset Managers Who Can Tell a Good Story


If you have ever been required to convince decision makers of the need to invest in asset management, chances are that you have been met with demand for further proof. In many cases, these decision makers have varying professional backgrounds across multiple disciplines while the asset managers, with their engineering/operations roots have traditionally approached the ‘proof’ with technical jargon and complex economic concepts. In other countries, who have long histories in asset management, it is now widely accepted as something that fiscally and socially responsible organizations do. The potential for asset management to improve the investment of public money is enormous, and the key to unlocking these major improvements lies in our communication.
This paper examines the opportunities that would come from maximizing the application of asset management, drawing from experiences in in New Zealand and Australia. The paper reflects on the root causes of the problem of not understanding decision makers and public expectations, which in turn leads to the stumbling blocks of communicating good ‘asset management’. Often, our audience is looking for very basic information that demonstrates accountability – information which, strangely, we do not provide. From experience, we have found that bringing in someone from an outside discipline, such as planning, that can act as a translator from the technical to real world concerns can improve the messaging and subsequent decision making outcome. The paper also draws on successful examples applied in countries that have a long history in asset management and shares concepts that others that have successfully used to communicate complex topics, through use of popular media and simple language. These concepts apply equally well in asset management.

Conference Paper Details

Session title:
Communicating Asset Management – Lost in Translation
Robak, A.
Murphy, R.
Landers, S.
Asset management