Cringing over cliches

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

The word is out: Australians are so over clichés. There’s no question that we love to hate them. Yet having said that, we use them in droves, big time.

General Clichés 

You’ve heard them all before... perhaps you’ve even used them yourself? Either way, Australia has spoken and these are the clichés we love to hate.

1. At the end of the day  

2. Let’s do lunch 

3. It’s not rocket science 

4. 24/7 

5. Calling to touch base 

6. Bring it on  

7. Don’t get me started  

8. As you do 

9. Tell me about it  

10. Your call may be recorded for training purposes

Political Clichés

Politicians are rarely short of something to say, possibly because they are the 2nd biggest offender in terms of using annoying clichés. Here’s a page or two out of their lexicon: 

1. Working families  

2. Not ruling anything in or out 

3. No magic bullet 

4. Can I just say 

5. The jury is still out on that one 

6. Going forward  

7. No brainer  

8. Having said that 

9. Ballpark figure  

10. At this point in time

For more Top 10 workplace, youth and social cliches, check out the whitepaper on our resources page.

The National Barometer 2012: How we're travelling

Monday, April 16, 2012

Australia in 2012 is experiencing significant population shifts and social trends. So amidst the change, it is encouraging to see that the national barometer shows Australia is travelling pretty well.

Within a few months, Australia’s population will exceed 23 million. In fact, Australia’s population has doubled since 1966 (11.5 million) which is the same period of time that the total world population has doubled (from 3.5 billion in 1966 to 7 billion today). When asked about this population growth, more than half of Australians (52%) said that they were concerned about Australia’s rapid rate of population growth. Only a third (36%) felt that we were growing at the right rate.

The ratio of retirees to workers will double over the next four decades

Australia is ageing rapidly as a nation! By 2050, older people (aged 65-84) are expected to more than double and those aged over 85 will more than quadruple. In today’s workforce, there is a ratio of 5 workers per retiree!  By 2050, this will have halved to just 2.5 workers per retiree. We are moving into a prolonged period where there will be fewer people working relative to the total population, to support through taxation, the increasing aged-care and health costs of an older population.

Growing cultural diversity, growing acceptance of it

Of the 1 in 5 (20%) of Australians born in non-English speaking countries, 83% feel they speak English well or very well. Of all Australians, Tasmanians are the most likely to have been born in Australia (87%) and 86% reported that all or most of their friends were from the same ethnic background as they were themselves. NT (67%) and Victoria (69%) had the lowest percentage of people reporting that all or most of their friends were from the same ethnic background that they were.

 Australians have embraced cultural diversity, 4 in 5 (80%) stating that it is a good thing for a society to be made up of people from different cultures. Those in the ACT were found to be the most accepting of cultural diversity, with 87% feeling this. Tasmanians and Queenslanders were the least likely to feel positive about cultural diversity, but even so, less than 1 in 10 Tasmanians (9%) and Queenslanders (8%) strongly disagree with the idea that cultural diversity is a good thing.

Community involvement and volunteering

As Australians, it’s not uncommon to volunteer in the community, with 6.14 million adults (38%) undertaking some form of voluntary work annually. Interestingly, Australians in major cities (34%) were less likely to participate in voluntary or community activities, when compared to Australians living in regional areas (42%).

Different generations also volunteered for different activities. Younger generations were more likely to be involved in sports and recreation, older Gen Y and Gen Xers were most commonly volunteering in parenting groups. Welfare and community type activities were most common in the Boomers and Builders.

Wealth of the top 20% of Australian households is 70x more than that of the lowest 20%

In Australia, the national average disposable income is $44,096. The disposable household income of the lowest 20% of Australian households comprises just 7% of the total Australian household income ($16,328). The average disposable household income of the top 20% of households is $88,608, which comprises 40% of all household income! Even after tax strategies to balance Australian earning, this is five times the average earnings of the bottom 20%.

 Currently, the average Australian household net worth is $719,561. The lowest 20% of Australian households own just 1% of Australia’s private wealth (with an average net worth of $31,829), whilst the highest 20% own 62%, with an average net worth of $2.22 million. The wealth of the average household in the top 20% is seventy times more than the average of those in the bottom 20%.

Mobiles overtake fixed lines as preferred form of communication

As Australians, we not only value our relationships, but we strive to ensure that we’re well-connected. On a day-to-day basis, 1 in 5 Australians (20%) have face-to-face contact with family and friends outside of their household, and 4 in 5 (79%) have contact weekly. In terms of non-physical forms of communication, mobile phone and SMS-style communication (84%) were the most common methods of keeping in touch with family and friends, just overtaking fixed phone (83%). There are currently more than 6.2 million Australian households connected with broadband internet which equals 7 in 10 (73%) of all households.

We’re optimistic about our health

Most Australian adults rate their health as good, very good or excellent (83%), and when thinking about overall life satisfaction, 2 in 5 (43%) of us are pleased or delighted with our lives, and a further 34% are mostly satisfied. That means that 3 in 4 (77%) Australians are quite satisfied with their lives overall. However, the less contact an adult had with family and friends living outside their household, the less satisfied they were with their lives. Similarly, divorcees and separated adults were also least likely to be feeling satisfied.

Crime and safety

As Australians, we feel safe in our homes, with 85% stating that we felt safe or very safe at home alone after dark. Interestingly, only half of Australians (48%) feel safe if they were to walk in their neighbourhood at night time. There was a large difference between males and females, with men feeling much safer than women whether in or out of their home. 2 in 3 (68%) men feel safe walking in their neighbourhood at night, compared with only 29% of women.

 “The Australian Barometer 2012 reads very well. We are connecting positively culturally, socially and technologically. Our communities are culturally diverse and most Australians agree that this enriches our society. Most Australians connect socially with friends and family other than their household each week, and continuing our early adoption of technology, most Australian households are broadband connected, and more use is made of mobile phones than landlines. We are happy with our health with 83% of Australians rating their health as above average (which says more for our positive frame of mind than our statistical abilities!) and we record a high level of feel safe at home and in our communities,” said Mark McCrindle, director of McCrindle Research. “Overall, the population growth and ageing, the skewed wealth distribution and safety in our neighbourhoods are the areas of concern.”

Sources: The Australian Bureau of Statistics,
The Australian Government Intergenerational Report (2010),
McCrindle Research findings (2012).

Bridging the Gap: Employers

Thursday, April 12, 2012

An employer's guide to managing and retaining to new generation of employees. Gen Y workers have markedly different attitudes, perspectives, values and communication styles when compared to the generations above them, typically their employers.

For Gen Y, their job matters - but it is not their life. In a world where they feel work-life balance is pivotal, if there is a clash, life wins! The social connections they have at work are also key to their retention. Gen Y want a community over a workplace; friends, not just colleagues.

Word Up: A Youth Lexicon

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

To find out the meanings of these words, check out our Youth lexicon!

Word Up: Influences on 21st Century Language

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Once upon a time, the only way people communicated was through face-to-face contact and the written word. These days, for 97% of Australian youth, text messaging is the top mobile phone function used. 

No longer do Australian students communicate in the classroom by note. They send text messages. Instead of walking over to a work mate or even an older co-worker in the office to pass something on, Gen Y workers send emails. Young people do not write long letters to stay in touch with faraway friends and family. They do not even have to wait until they get home to make a phone call (in fact, many young adults do not even have a landline connection)!

Mark McCrindle's book Word Up is a lexicon of 21st century youth slang, an overview of the factors shaping language, literacy, manners, and social interactions, and a guide to bridging communication gaps. For educators, employers, leaders and parents who rely on technology and spoken and written communications to influence and engage across the generations, Word up is an invaluable guide.  

For more, check out Influences on 21st Century language: McCrindle Research

Spirituality and Christianity in Australia today

Thursday, April 05, 2012

The world hit a new benchmark of 7 billion people just recently, and Australia is predicted to reach 23 million in the middle of the year. Our population has actually doubled since 1966 (11.5 million), and at that time 1 in 4 Aussies attended church (2.6 million). These days, with double the population, our church attendance has actually dwindled to less than 1 in 14 (1.6 million).

Looking at the ABS religious statistics might give some false positives for Christian leaders, showing that just under 64% of Australians check the Christianity box. However, we certainly don't seem to be seeing those numbers at church. In our research, we gave Australians the option to select both spirituality and religion. The findings showed that Australians identifying with the Christian faith dropped from 6 in 10, to 4 in 10. Overall, only 9% were actively practising and regularly attending at a place of worship.

These findings were all part of a joint-research venture with Olive Tree Media. For more details of the research findings, see here.

Alternatively, please click here for a free A5 summary of the research findings.

Weddings and Marriages Infographic

Wednesday, April 04, 2012
Do you believe that...

  • 7 in 10 marriages are conducted by a civil celebrant?
  • 1 in 5 will marry more than once in their lifetime?
  • 4 in 5 couples live together before tying the knot?
  • 1 in 3 marriages end in divorce?

For more of these stats, check out our latest infographic about Australian trends in weddings and marriages!

For a more detailed summary, here's our earlier blog post, Going to the chapel: Weddings in Australia.

Weddings and Marriages Infographic McCrindle Research 2012

Leading and Managing: What's the difference?

Monday, April 02, 2012

With changing generations comes changing attitudes, relations and styles of communication. In Mark McCrindle's book The ABC of XYZ , the chapter Leading and Managing explores this further.

  1. If an employee is summoned to the employer’s room, he must remain standing until his chief indicates a seat. At the conclusion of the interview he must leave as quietly as possible, closing the door gently after him. 
  2. If a junior meets his employer in the lift or in the street he should bow, but must not enter into conversation unless first addressed. 
  3. If an employee has a need to send a letter to his chief he should commence it with the words ‘Dear sir’ and conclude with the words ‘Yours obediently’.

- Australian Etiquette, 1959

Mark McCrindle's book The ABC of XYZ gives insights and practical strategies to help parents, teachers and managers bridge the gaps and engage with each generation. However, this book is more than a research-based reference work or valuable 'how to' guide - it is also a very interesting read with facts and lists to which members of each generation will reminisce.  

Leading and Managing: McCrindle Research

Going to the chapel: Weddings in Australia

Friday, March 30, 2012

In 4 of 5 (79%) marriages, couples lived together before tying the knot. Interestingly, couples who did live together before getting married tended to be slightly older than those who had not lived together.

Australia sees an average of 332 weddings per day, with this figure rising to an average of 577 in October, the busiest month of the year, and down to 190 in June, the quietest month of the year!

For more wedding stats, check out Weddings and Marriage in Australia 2012

Word Up: 21st Century Manners

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Social rules and manners have been constantly changing and shaped, relative to the times and context. What is considered socially acceptable behaviour is highly malleable.

Looking at how social rules are taught by parents to their children, current times have seen an emphasis placed on 'stranger danger', being weary of adults that the child does not know. What is scary is that, children these days are also taught to be cautious of adults they do already know ('danger from within').

We teach children to be assertive rather than obedient

In our survey on manners, we found that nearly half of Aussie parents teach their kids only to listen to and obey adults whom they know.

Mark McCrindle's book Word Up is a lexicon of 21st century youth slang, an overview of the factors shaping language, literacy, manners, and social interactions, and a guide to bridging communication gaps. For educators, employers, leaders and parents who rely on technology and spoken and written communications to influence and engage across the generations, Word up is an invaluable guide. 

For more, check out 21st Century Manners:

Welcome to our blog...

We have a passion for research that tells a story, that can be presented visually, that brings about change and improves organisations. And we hope these resources help you know the times.

Our Social Media Sites

Facebook | McCrindle Research Social Media YouTube | McCrindle Research Social Media Twitter | McCrindle Research Social Media Flickr | McCrindle Research Social Media Pinterest | McCrindle Research Social Media Google Plus | McCrindle Research Social Media LinkedIn | McCrindle Research Social Media Mark McCrindle Slideshare

Last 150 Articles


media release mover and shaker transport budget events socialites Australian Families millenials data survey design shbc men Australian Census state teaching Australian schools Northern Territory Assistant Store Manager identity anzac Channel 7 Australian communities tableau know the times 10 years recap cost Queensland insights townhouses national wealth financial fears leadership christmas overcast royal baby 2017 investment social analysis google for education healthy future sun analysis DIY cancelling event village cooking land of the middle class conference speaker optimistic award winner personalities hobart culturally diverse The Daily Edition travel product contiki Tasmania pharmacies 2013 real Tuesday Trends Kiwi keynote group internet education future norwest friendship Northern beaches Event trends Generation Y communication increasing densification Queensland: QLD cartodb learning styles household eliane census results optus my business awards faux-cilise communities ethnography educhat presentation hopes online shopping organisational culture year 7 World Water Day states unemployment event social life futurist cost of living learn year 12 Res Vis census ACF 2016 rent Valentine’s Day learning Engineering Manager professional development communications sentiments thought leadership christianity princess charlotte wages Sydney keynote speaker faux-ciliser post rationalism CBD Western Australia global financial crisis domestic data analyst South Australia Wellington Social Trend gen z commuters easy rider define Australian Bureau of Statistics tips australian communities forum participants middle class office space stay home water wealth australia religion workforce aged care research visualisation students public speaking sector wide Financial Planning Week winter ease of travel Netflix graphs cloudy days newspaper entertainment food social commentary relevant census fail 2016 census results retirement collaborative click population property market 2016 census entrepreneur slideshare panel Hornsby Shire Council summer stats woolworths brand capital cities Australian demographics baby name crows nest study rise of local population milestone The ABC of XYZ New South Wales average aussie new york times global mateship home owner gold coast emerging technologies house price rise conference presentation apartment optus life Wodonga program high density training TDE wolloomooloo aussie culture Bathburst royal visual trend mccrindle research high density living IT Specialists Melbourne REIV National Conference entrepreneurial responsive megatrends February 16 mythbusting conference cash change environment NEETs education research australian communities trends report celebration urban living Sydney Financial Planning Association of Australia professional speaker local communities Australian Dream salary ashley mckenzie huffington post market research young people shopping waverton rising house prices daily commute urban living index New Zeland language neutral bay list dessert generation proactive Canberra travelling PSI Gen X pharmacy growing population the changing face of sydney speaker baby energy moderators guide financial greatness typical australian parents wealth and income living perth workplace career easter motivate youth unemployment darwin speakers Caregiver 23 million work national crime rates cars resource employment report paying to work happiness cancel plans shopper's pick social issues mccrindle holidays daily telegraph gen alpha urban taskforce infographic wall mining boom Australia Day google Geoff Brailey community engagement Love jobs marketing growth 1980 shifts brands presentations father's day tuesday deloitte generations parenting australian social research gender social media fears 1968 Gen Y 24,000,000 careers australians staying home more cold society dreaming etiquette safe medicine mentor ageing WA focus group SMSF Territory world youth day internship Christmas lunch in depth interviews mobile eliane miles digital case study McCrindle Speakers rule keeper weather investing prince george infographic long weekend workshop wealth distribution government the average aussie video trends analyst child care small business spend student social researchers community school students property narcissism youth demographic trends baby names earning urban renter of the future litter royal influence professional services consumer environmental scanning the hills shire area keynote speaker equip story Adelaide demographer ageing population Aussie housing growth sector wide study alpha results mythbusters holiday family NSW schools lifestyle Christmas presents organisations thrive workplace culture Financial Planning Association goals housing market suburbs professional meetings city selfie NT poor Northern Beaches media commentary storytelling bus Myth research services women debate innovative residents forecast affordability priorities home ownership clothing bureau education future report financial dreams DESTEL customer politics toys moreton bay System's Architect trend tuesday award business index non profit changing face of sydney research data sustainable builders group session sydney hills suburban living financial future 40 million public holiday baby name predictions employers victoria blaxland REIV Conference Crime Rates children omnibus housing affordability cultural diversity skills criminal educated resilience not for profit investor finance emerging generations sydneycity crime Research Executive business university degree winter blues consumerism sunburnt country social change house prices charity ACF supply and demand GPO English vegetarian social impact Charlotte Deaths sunny days couple baby boom high density apartments dream media buildings publication technology media activity sydneysiders demographic transformations teacher housing trends generation alpha poker master school satisfaction acf15 income social lives engagement 2012 focus groups seasons geomapping January 26th tv forecasting communicate vegemite marriage local commute Education Future Forum quote high school 2015 Kirsten Brewer sydney event royal family potts point not-for-profit Northern Beaches Christian School the australian dream faux-cilising trends of 2016 repayments christian volunteers JOMO social enquiry affordable twentyseventeen public speaker nfp bondi Tuesday Trend news baby boomers innovation hills shire forum global generations offenders 24 million internships Merry Christmas households hornsby national private wealth marrickville millionth New Zealand teachers insight owning a home socialising Generation X staying in menai dare to dream entrepreneurs of today logan VIC 2014 pyrmont fresh interactive wellbeing monarchy lalor park Births SA teleworking balance church research unaffordable society trends ipswich car trends of 2017 renting Christchurch sector HSC kate middleton jobs of the future experience community event capital city 2016 home social university ultimo Duchess of Cambridge going out rain researcher ashley fell future of work ABS teach culture mother's day sports economy "know the times" online intern visualisation 1975 rental stress demographics 1994 Christmas season Channel Seven mccrindle in the media social commentator generational trends the hills tea brisbane manly house price follow future proof train social shifts tertiary education young australians suburb qualitative research Scouts office opening future of education challenge divorce earnings sydney metro coffee mortgage hello fresh data visualisation social researcher curiosity Australian Communities Trends mccrindle tea Royals baby name trends future-proof future proofing low density divorce rate Mark McCrindle Wagga Wagga wage Real Estate Do It Yourself cancelling plans population growth population map FOMO work-life leadership workshop ACT learner EFF aged care puzzle economic ideas collaboration millennials school research pack marriages families weekly earnings ferry housing in the media networking grandparents relational social trends property price world annual income financial independence personal growth #censusfail statistics Word Up TAS tattoos friends wealth and income distribution authenticity demographic new office house education sector census 2016 Population Clock brand experience outsourcing office conferences Real Estate Institute of Victoria earn leader Australians engage 2020 Australian Trends Australia Day 2017 meals Australian Home rich schools students FPA facts snapshot emerging trends goal survey Aussies future names staff debt social research education plans wedding work mates generation Z