Work Ready Workshop

‘Half the job is doing the job, and the other half is finding ways to get along with people and tuning yourself into the delicacy of the situation’

Entry to the creative industries is difficult. People starting out find themselves in a very competitive space where it is hard to stand out and hard-earned qualifications may not count for much. Employers for their part have difficulty finding employees who understand the demands of the workplace and can quickly begin to contribute.

To understand the problems, we surveyed major employers in the screen sector. What we found was a knowledge gap:

‘Most people are bright enough.
What’s needed is to give them more knowledge so they can be catapulted to the next level’

People didn’t understand enough about the workplace they were entering:

‘The world fundamentally doesn’t work the way it’s taught at university’

There were specific skills they needed to learn:

‘It’s important to understand the hierarchy, which is not always apparent’
‘Contracting is very important, how to look for key terms, what to be aware of when you are reviewing contracts’
‘Pitching – standing up for your own ideas and presenting them well’

There was demand too for more general capabilities:

‘We look for people who can work well in teams, people who can commit to and achieve deadlines, people who display good communication skills’
‘Learning how to take feedback with humility is really critical.
And how to give feedback constructively’

And people needed to learn the larger dynamics of the industry:

‘We need to teach people to embrace flexibility and the flux of the industry’
‘People need to understand ‘the adventure of the deal’ and how it changes every time’
‘Sustainability should be the focus for every undertaking’

WORK READY has been designed to address these needs.

Participants will learn their away around a production office, gain key domain knowledge in areas such as finance and contracting, practice core skills of collaboration and negotiation, and develop personal skills in areas like time management and presentation.


WORK READY Curriculum

  1. Self-management

    This topic is about learning how to be your best – how to manage your time, deal with stress, be resilient in face of setbacks and maintain a positive outlook.

  2. Bringing people together

    How do you bring people together in an enterprise? In this topic we review the business structures commonly used in creative industries. We also practice teamwork and collaboration – core skills in creative work.

  3. Creating value

    Where and how is value created? We explore the value chain and the revenue ‘waterfall’ in creative businesses. We also explore how digital technologies are reshaping creative work – and redistributing the rewards.

  4. Keeping score

    What’s a balance sheet and what can a P&L tell you about a business? We introduce you to basic accounting concepts and how companies measure and report their performance.

  5. Understanding investors

    Not all investors are alike. Most are risk averse but some are not. They may offer debt or equity, and their money can be ‘hard’ or ‘soft’. We explain the differences and what they mean when you’re trying to finance a project.

  6. Reaching audiences

    Digital platforms are bringing audiences closer, enabling engagement and feedback. In this topic we explore how audiences can help drive development and build value in creative businesses.

  7. Elements of the pitch

    Pitching is a core skill in creative industries. In this topic you will practice the elements of successful pitching – narrative, clarity, confidence, and engagement.

  8. Legal instruments

    We unpick the key legal instruments governing creative businesses – the PIA, distribution and licence agreements – showing which clauses matter, what you can negotiate, and what you can’t.



  • WORK READY will be delivered over four two-day workshops, running over a Friday and Saturday from 9am to 5pm each day.
  • The workshops will combine lectures and group exercises, supported by readings.
  • Participants will work in groups on a project that draws on elements of their own business. The project will be the ‘stalking horse’ for the course. Groups will be expected to work on their projects between workshops.
  • There will be a maximum of 16 participants in the course.


Course leader

Abigail Tabone


Dr David Court
Ian Murray
Dr Chris Stevens

What you will take away:

  • An understanding of how people work together in creative businesses
  • An appreciation of basic accounting and legal concepts
  • Skills in teamwork and collaboration
  • Readiness to fit in and be productive from day one



  • $2950 inc GST
  • REBATE: Compton School is beta-testing its curriculum and seeking feedback.
    If you would like to join a focus group discussion at completion of the course, we will pay you a rebate of $300.
  • SCHOLARSHIPS: Participants may apply for a Compton Director’s Award of $500.



  • To be advised


Register your interest