Jane Martino: Co-Founder of Smiling Mind

Jane Martino is renowned for developing thriving businesses, having founded and one of Australia’s most renowned communications agencies, Undertow Media and was subsequently recognised as a finalist in the Telstra Young Business Women’s awards in 2005.

…even if it is new and people see you as a little mad….it just might be the next BIG thing.”

Based in Melbourne, Victoria, Jane is a published author with 72,000 copies of her ‘Thank You’ books sold nationwide. She has more recently combined her personal love of young people, giving back and meditation to create Smiling Mind, a not for profit, modern approach to meditation for young people.

What are you working on right now?

At the moment I am working on telling as many people and organisations about Smiling Mind (we launched on 2 October 2012 at Fed Square) as I can to ensure we have strong levels of uptake and continue to gain momentum both in terms of schools and groups using the program, fundraising and interest from Government.

How do you make ideas happen?

I create a plan and then keep pushing!

What does your typical day look like?

I usually wake up early (around 5/5.30am) and meditate, then I will plan my day (or week if it is a Monday!), do some work and then meet a friend for a run around our local park….sometimes this is all before the kids even wake up! It is then a few hours of power before my husband or I drop them off at school and kinder. Then it is usually a day full of meetings which at the moment mainly relate to Smiling Mind. If I am not on pick up duty I do try and be home to make sure we all have dinner together and catch up before everyone falls asleep! It’s not a glamorous day but it is a full and joyful one!

What challenges have you faced when starting or growing an idea in Australia?

It might be the thing that somehow changes the world – and if not, it will certainly change you.”

The main challenge I have always found is the difference between people believing in an idea and saying ‘that is fantastic’ and actually committing to being part of it. Inherently, we are all risk averse and it is honestly scary sometimes to support something unknown. My advice would be to do it, even if it is new and people see you as a little mad….it just might be the next BIG thing. It might be the thing that somehow changes the world – and if not, it will certainly change you.

What is one idea you are willing to give away for free?

Gratitude will get you everywhere.

What people/companies do you think are doing really cool stuff in your industry in Australia at the moment? 

What about internationally?

What role do you think businesses/non-profits should play in affecting social change?

…with the way technology drives our choices and behaviour, change can happen and be adopted so much faster.”

As big a role as they can and want to. We all have the power to affect social change, especially with the way technology drives our choices and behaviour, change can happen and be adopted so much faster. We really are lucky that we are living in such an exciting time where one person can make such a huge impact on society and it can spread like wildfire.

Name 3 apps you would recommend to our readers?

Name 3 Australian’s we should follow on Twitter? 

The three people that inspire them the most – without the Tweets taking them away from the present moment!

Are there opportunities for people to get involved with your idea (e.g. are you looking for funding, interns, marketing help)?

Absolutely! All of the above. We would welcome donations, volunteers or even people letting others know about Smiling Mind within their own networks…every little bit counts!

Our readers are smart, creative, talented and good looking. Here’s your chance to ask them anything.

What are the three key ingredients you think constitute a really good idea?

What’s your favourite bar/café/restaurant?

I absolutely love Chin Chin and Mamasita.

We thought it would be cool to crowdsource an annual prize to award to the interviewee’s choice (each person interviewed gets one vote) winner for the year’s best interview. Are you willing to kick in a prize?

Would have loved to but being a not for profit we don’t really have the resources at the moment – but you can download Smiling Mind for free at the App store!

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