Tag Archives: Richard Branson

Harmless fun or something more? Branson picking up women


Branson picking up women

Branson picking up women

Call me a prude, say I have no sense of humor, but isn’t there something wrong with this picture?  See the slide show here.  It seems that Richard Branson picks women up like this on a regular basis as a media exercise, but one wonders where this is coming from.  Sure it looks like fun and the women seem to be OK with it, but is he also picking up older women like this and is he picking up men as well?  And what does it mean to pick up someone like this when chances are you barely know them? I think it means he is attracted to them on some level and thinks that they are not his equal, so compliant.  Can’t see him picking up Hilary Clinton can you?

It says to me that he see’s these women as objects, trophies, prizes and something that he can have and do with as he likes in the name of advertising.  Possibility the most disturbing is the way that he picks up his female staff!  If you or I did that or had it done to us by one of our co workers or managers it would be assault.  I think there is a little sexual thing going on with this picking up stuff as well.  You see men pick up women in movies and take them into the bedroom, men used to pick women up in this way to take them across the threshold when they got married so I think there is some sort of sexual/ownership stuff going on here.

Ok, Ok, so you think I am being over the top?  Let me tell you about the time when I was about 26 and worked for a guy that looked a lot like Tom Selleck.  Big tall good looking guy who could have any women he wanted.  Was good at his job, ex army and an in control type of guy.  Great guy.  Problem was that I had to work with him but didn’t report to him.  Even so, he thought it Ok to tell me to get coffee for him and shout orders at me like I was his slave.  Well I was having no of that and refused, and told him way in no uncertain terms.  One day, he couldn’t get me to do what he wanted me to so he picked me up in the same way as Branson is pictured picking up these women and held me over the stair well to the dock floor – a good 15 feet below.  He was basically (in a good natured way, ha!), trying to get me to do what he wanted.  Basically, he was bullying me to do what he wanted by using his physical strength to try and dis-empower me,and force his will on me.  I told him that he was assaulting me and if didn’t want a court case he had best put me down pronto.

He did, but the other guys in the office who were truck drivers thought the whole thing incredibly funny.  Of course it was not and I made my point known in no uncertain terms.  This was about 1982 and things have changed slightly, but then maybe Branson has some cave man in him still?



Michaela Bolzan – Woman of Change


Michaela Bolzan

Michaela Bolzan


After fifteen years of producing in-flight entertainment for airlines and corporate communications, Creative Director, Michaela Bolzan has recently set up her own company (in 2011) called Creative & Co. The company is a dynamic, collaborative group of artists working together to create theatre, film and festivals. The group aims to produce work that inspires, challenges and entertains their audiences.

Michaela has a history creating theatre and in her words “marching to the beat of her own drum”. After completing her B.A. Honours with a major in Drama at the University of Newcastle, and at only 21 years of age she and a friend set up a theatre company in Sydney writing “issues based plays”. Writing, directing, producing and acting in her plays, now almost twenty years ago, Michaela found plenty to talk about. Current issues of the time were sadly issues that still remain issues today. Youth suicide and underage drinking were just two of the subjects that Michaela wrote plays about. She and her partner toured the plays around schools with great success. She says that these were “the most fulfilling years of my life” and she felt that “my skills were being used for good” by bringing this issues to life through theatre. These early experiences in theatre lead her to roles working with the airlines and corporate communications as a Creative Director. This role took her around the world on a regular basis, visiting her clients and producing world class film and media. The next time you are travelling in-flight on Virgin Australia, for example, you might see some of her work including the multi-awarding winning animated safety video, featuring Richard Branson.


Micheala’s current company, Creative & Co is developing a new play about the life of Sylvia Beach. The play will be set in Paris between World Wars I and II, when the French city was the cultural and literary capital of the Western World. People from around the world were flocking there hoping to participate in the experimental advances of the artistic community. Though it only lasted until the start of World War II, this time saw the beginning of a number of the major European artistic movements including Modernism, Dadaism and Surrealism.

As a young American woman, Sylvia travelled from her hometown of Princeton to Paris where she opened the first English bookshop, called Shakespeare and Company. For twenty years the shop became a literary magnet for artists including James Joyce, Ernest Hemingway, Gertrude Stein and many of the other women who made Paris of the 20s and 30s the hub of artistic pursuits.

FESTIVALS – The inaugural Southern Highlands Writers’ Festival

Micheala and her company, Creative & Co will be launching the inaugural Southern Highland Writers’ Festival in July 2012. This two-day event (21-22 July 2012) will feature talks, panel discussions and reading by some of Australia’s leading writers.

The festival will be held at the stunning Gibraltar Hotel in Bowral. Set on a beautiful 100 acre estate in the picturesque Southern Highlands of NSW (only 90mins from both Sydney and Canberra), the Gibraltar Hotel has a reputation for golfing excellence, fine food and now an innovative writers’ festival.

Check out www.southernhighlandswritersfestival for details.

As a Women of Change, Michaela was a speaker at a recent Women in Leadership forum, where she was quoted as saying that “the world needs sensible women to lead companies and countries” and no doubt more women “marching to the beat of their own drum” like Micheala herself!

CONTACT Michaela

PO Box 14, Double Bay, NSW, 2028 Australia