First initiative from innovation program, The Lab -

Southern Cross Austereo (SCA) is doing its bit for fatherhood, creating an innovative new support network for dads working at the media company to discuss every-thing from nappies to nap time.

The Papa Project is the first initiative to launch out of SCA’s new innovation pro-gram, The Lab, encouraging staff to generate creative ideas to enhance their work-place.

The Lab, which launched in April, is focused on nurturing innovative thinking and supporting staff to invent initiatives to implement across the business. Employees have attended brainstorm sessions, and were provided with specific innovation missions and encouraged to think creatively to address them.

SCA CEO, Grant Blackley, said 95 submissions, from regional and metro offices across the country, had already been received.

The Papa Project is the first to be rolled-out initially in the media company’s Sydney office, with plans for a national program.

The Papa Project is the brainchild of “founding fathers” SCA staffers Mitch Byatt and Arthur Georgiou, who wanted to create a safe place for men to come together and share the trials and tribulations of fatherhood.

Mr Blackley said the Papa Project directly aligned with the company’s mission to bring staff together.

“We know that becoming a dad can be the most vulnerable and emotional period in a man’s life, so it’s really important for us to create an environment where men can share their experiences, emotions and concerns about being a dad, and the differ-ent challenges they face as their children grow,” he said.

“SCA is committed to enabling our staff to be innovative in the workplace and to devise creative ideas that enhance our award-winning culture - the Papa Project is a perfect example of that. It’s encouraging to see our Lab initiative already yielding some great results; I look forward to seeing what comes out of our next brainstorm session.”

The Papa Project includes a monthly forum, with guest speakers and support from charities like Beyond Blue, covering off the issues confronting modern-day dads.

SCA and Triple M have invested heavily in understanding modern Australian men, conducting its annual “Man Study” to gauge their mindset.  In addition, Triple M has partnered with Beyond Blue in NO Talk Day, where no radio shows or ads were aired for a day and instead, men were encouraged to talk to their mates