Arinex is celebrating the positive impact from its staff of varied heritage.
It comes as Arinex finishes the International Metropolis Conference 2018, which brought together world leaders and experts to discuss the benefits of migration, diversity and integration, at ICC Sydney from 29 October to 2 November 2018.
Conference Co-Chair Dr Bulent (Hass) Dellal AO said: “We are a multicultural Conference with lots of international people attending, therefore it was important we had a team that understands diversity and obviously Arinex does. It also has the experience in running many international conferences so the staff are confronted and deal with diversity all the time.”
Arinex employs 85 staff from a range of cultures and demographics, speaking a collective 23 languages and with 40 per cent born overseas.
From its humble beginnings in multi-lingual tour guiding, then simultaneous interpreting and translation, Arinex is well-attuned to cultural differences and sensitivities – something that has proved crucial in building and strengthening relationships over the years. It has also been a hallmark of the company’s onsite delivery, ensuring international delegates can always find a friendly face and someone they can communicate with in their own language.
In the spirit of celebrating diversity Arinex is sharing the stories of three of its staff members.
Intern Miriam Boehm has been with Arinex this year on a secondment from Germany.
“As soon as I meet another German on site you can see them immediately relax when they realise I’m German too,” she said. “It’s a nice commonality and helps establish a sense of familiarity straight away. For overseas promotions, my familiarisation with the German work ethic helped us better coordinate with local suppliers and made the process a lot smoother.”
Developing close connections to a Chinese family growing up, Market Development Manager Drew Whait said this early cultural influence had helped with developing business opportunities overseas.
“An understanding and appreciation of Chinese culture has allowed me to develop and strengthen ties with several Chinese companies, resulting in new sponsorship arrangements for client events,” he said. “Simple, but important signs of respect and understanding are often all it takes. Without knowing what they are, you can be damaging a relationship before you even start.”
Igor Kasalovic brought his family to Australia in 1998 to seek refuge from the former war-torn Yugoslavia. He joined Arinex 17 years ago as Senior Digital Designer.
“Over the years Serbian or Croatian delegates have been excited to speak with another countryman and to revert to their first language,” he said.
“A particularly exciting experience was when I acted as an interpreter during the 18th International Conference & Exhibition on Liquefied Natural Gas in Perth.”
Arinex CEO Tamara Kavalec said “Arinex had always given great weight to staff diversity in its 45-year history. It enriches our workplace, our understanding of the world around us and our approach to business. I am in no doubt we are the successful company we are today, able to deliver better experiences for our clients and their delegates, because of our marvellously eclectic team.”
Metropolis 2018 welcomed more than 800 staff from 38 different countries, for five days of conference and social programs. It heard from more than 200 speakers, including New South Wales Premier Gladys Berejiklian and other government ministers, as well as journalists such as Emma Alberici.
SBS also streamed hours of content in more than 20 languages from a temporary on-site pod.