Heather Smith

Ita Buttrose AO OBE, Five Good Friends Ambassador and Heather Smith, supporting our new innovative approach to aged care.

I recently attended the official launch of Five.Good.Friends. On an extraordinarily hot day at the St. Lucia Bowls Club, I had the privilege of experiencing something every writer should probably have on their bucket list. I stood in the crowd under an umbrella sheltering from the heat and listened to Ita Buttrose AO OBE.


Ita Buttrose AO OBE is an Australian journalist, businesswoman, television personality author and there’s even a telemovie created about her life: Paper Giants: The Birth of Cleo.


Her talk was captivating and mesmerising. Every word and phrase was impeccable. She shared with us a story about caring for her father and how she was pleased to be involved in a tech start-up company that focused on helping people stay at home as long as they can.


As a writer of eight business books, I listened to Ms Buttrose and felt a wave of inadequacy come over me. I know I will never be able to deliver words as perfectly as she does or connects with and move an audience the way she did that day. However, I also think she might say my feelings were nonsense and suggest a good dose of hard work and life long learning is the cure…


Maybe it was the heat – but I settled in and let Ms Buttrose words carry me away on the story and the importance of supporting people in the community. They did record the speech on the day, and I’ve tried to find it, to share with you, but I’ve not been successful… So I’m in the audience thinking this is possibly the greatest speech I will ever have the privilege of witnessing in real life, and I am so lucky to be here. Then a wave of nausea overcomes me as I realise my friend Simon Lockyer the co-founder of Five.Good.Friends is talking after her. How can you possibly follow an Australian legend? For a few moments there I was seriously worried – but I needn’t have been. I don’t know how he pulled it off – but he too gave a brilliant speech, I was so proud of him and happy for him (and Ms Buttrose watched him intently and I think she was impressed too).


Let me see if I can explain Five.Good.Friends to you. The concept is about connecting you with people who can provide in-home care for your loved ones. They offer a membership model that utilises technology, people and community to reinvented ‘traditional home care’. Everything is rapidly changing – so why shouldn’t the way we look at age care change too? They offer a transparent and flexible solution so people can age in place engaged with the community, friends and life they love.


Mission: To re-invent in home help and care for individuals as well as the family so that everyone is kept informed, in touch and most importantly in control.


So you join Five Good Friends and connect with someone who could help your parents do their shopping, walk their dog, go to the chemist, or the local bingo hall. The concept seems quite flexible to your needs and the support level you need. For the tech guys reading this model is a marketplace platform for aged care.


I know for myself – having this conversation is difficult – my dear dad refused to ever talk about what his future would hold – and now he is unable to make decisions about his care – though he is always very happy – and has a wonderful team around him.


If this is something you are thinking about call Five Good Friends on 1300 787 581 and maybe they can help your family on this journey.


Social entrepreneurs and school friends, Simon Lockyer and Nathan Betteridge, founded Five.Good.Friends. If you take a moment to watch this video from SkyBusinessNew, you’ll see that they were also involved with founding Youngcare and EveryDayHero – two organisations that have helped an incredible number of people across Australia and beyond.

Technology used in Five Good Friends

I’ve known Simon and Nathan for nearly thirty years, and for the last decade, I’ve worked with them on many, maybe even all ? of their start-up projects. They see a need in the community, conceptualise an innovative way to solve it and push available technology to its limits to develop a business. I love that they are open to grabbing tools and plugging them together to build an integrated cloud business platform that helps them brainstorm, communicate, stay close to their numbers and scale fast!!

Here are the solutions they are currently using at Five Good Friends:

Xero – online accounting solution, brimming with automation and brilliant features. Here’s a quick video on the benefits of Xero.

Receipt Bank – every business should use Receipt Bank! It minimises data entry by extracting details from bills and expenses and pushing it into Xero. Here’s a video on how I run a paperless office using ReceiptBank.

Expensify – for recording and submitting employee expenses.

Ezidebit – for collect membership payments.

Zapier – connecting and automating tasks between solutions. This is one of my favourite tools, a trigger in one solution, causes a ZAP which pushes a task to happen in another solution. Once set-up it just happens – hands-free!

Periscope data –  From SQL queries to analysis.

Data dog – Datadog is a monitoring service for cloud-scale applications, bringing together data from servers, databases, tools, and services to present a unified view of an entire stack. These capabilities are provided on a SaaS-based data analytics platform.

Slack – internal communication tool.

Dropbox – Dropbox is a file hosting service that offers cloud storage, file synchronisation, personal cloud, and client software. This is another solution many businesses could benefit from using!

DropboxPaper – for collaboration – a flexible workplace that brings people and idea together

Basecamp – project management and task allocation

 Portrait photo of Heather Smith.

Why did I write this?

(1) Ita Buttrose is amazeballs and I need people to know this!

(2) Discussions around aged care can be difficult and stressful. If Five Good Friends can help your family I want you to at least know about this option.

(3) I believe in what Simon and Nathan and the team at Five Good Friends are doing – beyond a quick share on FaceBook. I want you to understand there is a smart socially conscious team behind Five Good Friends.


My name is Heather Smith: Tell me what you do & I’ll tell you how to automate it. YouTuber, Podcaster, Writer, Accountant. ABCRadio Brisbane Online Community Correspondent.


Original source: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/innovation-integration-ita-buttrose-ao-obe-heather-smith

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