Written by Kate Billing, Founder & Creative Director, Blacksmith

A 2 minute read & 1 hour watch

Welcome to The Real Room!

The Real Room is a space I’ve created for conversations about the tricky business of putting being fully human at the centre of how we live, lead and work.

I’ll be having Real Room conversations with fabulous humans from all over New Zealand and the world. Expect conversations with a diverse group of people about all things human-related. My guests will range from people leaders to thought leaders, researchers to practitioners, corporate legends to creative entrepreneurs, artists to sports professionals, and more. If they’re all about taking a more human-centred approach, I’ll be talking with them!

Conversation #2 with Lisa O’Neill

As a follow up to my first conversation with Lisa, we’re making it a regular thing to have a ‘stream of consciousness’ style conversation about the ‘real world’ we’re experiencing in a particular moment in time based on THREE prompts:

  1. I’ve noticed…
  2. I wonder…
  3. I think…

In this free-range, one-hour Real Room conversation, Lisa and I talk about:

  • #blacklivesmatter and how as the people we are at this time, in this country, it’s our responsibility to educate ourselves, to ask more questions and to seek to understand so that we can offer support and take informed action (check out the LinkedIn post I share that’s chock full of resources, so you can join us in doing just that)
  • ‘Sunderland Til I Die’: relatedness and loyalty
  • moving from a control-based reality to one led by commitment (see the model and supporting LinkedIn post HERE)
  • knowing your flow about where, when and how you work best
  • engineering business around ‘life by design’ and the delicious tension that creates about how to make more impact in fewer hours
  • how your results are evidence of your current commitments, like it or not; and
  • why on-line connection is better for some people than the real world equivalent, starting with safety, comfort and autonomy.

A shameless plug: The conversation starts with me mitigating the potential distraction about what’s written on my hoodie. If you’d like to find out more about that design and other hope-and inspiration-filled clothing and jewellery CHECK OUT my sister’s page @mandybeetees on Instagram.


Next up on The Real Room I chat with fellow passionate developer of humans, Mark Le Busque. Watch out for it in the next edition of Fully Human.


P.S: If you haven’t already, sign up to join our growing Fully Human Tribe HERE or at the bottom of this page and we’ll keep you posted with upcoming events, new thinking and development opportunities!

Kate B and Lisa O

Kate Billing:

Kate is the Founder & Creative Director of Blacksmith www.blacksmith.co.nz, a specialist leadership development practice focused on the development of human-centred leaders and fully human organisations.

For nearly 25 years Kate has worked in the people, culture and leadership space, building a reputation for sharp insights, compassionate challenge, warmth, and energy. Over that time she has worked within a range of industries and organisations, with leaders from the boardroom to the front line, all of whom have demonstrated their capacity for personal and collective evolution.

She believes it’s time for a new kind of leader: human-centred leaders who together will create the world we need for our shared future. Leaders who are examples of what’s possible when we commit to the highest levels of humanity and responsibility in the ways that we live, lead and do business.

Lisa O’Neill:

Feisty, funny and fabulous, Lisa has the rare ability to deliver powerful messages through side-splitting humour. She is a highly sought-after keynote speaker and MC across Australia and New Zealand, along with  being appointed recently to the position of CEO of Thought Leader Business School.

After more than a decade on stage, Lisa is consistently top-rated by corporate and conference audiences alike. Participants love her straight-talking, refreshing wisdom and infectious laughter. They respond to her call to live big lives and to become the best version of themselves.

Lisa is also the author of several books including ‘Juggling in High Heels – How to Organise Chaos’, ‘The Lickable Third’ and her latest book, ‘Everything You Want’.