Sir Tipene O’Regan Front Foot Leadership In this issue
• Where are the Wise? P2 • So What is Leadership? P16 • My Chosen Land P20
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Acknowledgements We thank the following people for their generous support of Leadership New Zealand. Leadership New Zealand Trustees • Jo Brosnahan, Consultant, Chairman of Leadership New Zealand • Tony Nowell, Deputy Chairman of Leadership New Zealand, Managing Director Griffins Foods Limited • David McGregor, Partner, Bell Gully • Reg Birchfield, Publisher, Profile Publishing • Pauline Kingi, Regional Director, Te Puni Kokiri • Michael Barnett, Chief Executive, Auckland Regional Chamber of Commerce • Lindsay Corban, Managing Director, Lindsay Corban and Associates Limited • Louise Marra, Director Auckland, Ministry of Economic Development • Jaine Lovell-Gadd, Property Manager, Auckland City Council • Peter Kerridge, Kerridge & Partners • Kate Cantwell, Alumni, Leadership Victoria • Mark Otten, CFO, The Warehouse
Leadership New Zealand Advisory Trustees • Sir Paul Reeves, Chancellor, AUT • Tim Miles, Chief Executive, Vodafone Limited • Russell Stanners, Managing Director, Vodafone New Zealand Limited • Morgan Williams, Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment • John Hinchcliff, Auckland City Councillor • Garry Wilson, Director • Jenni Raynish, Managing Director, Raynish and Partners • Rob Fenwick, Managing Director, Living Earth • Bob Harvey, Mayor, Waitakere City • Fran O’Sullivan, Journalist • Jenny Gill, Chief Executive, ASB Trust • Rosemary Howard, Managing Director, Telstra Corporation Leadership New Zealand Key Partners • Vodafone New Zealand • Accident Compensation Corporation • Raynish and Partners • The ASB Trusts • BellGully Leadership New Zealand Supporting Partners • TelstraClear • JR McKenzie Trust • Kerridge & Partners • Profile Publishing Limited All Leadership New Zealand contributors Invited contributors and people who gave their time to be interviewed for the magazine.
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Other people who have supported The Leadership New Zealand Trust include • The 2006 Programme Selection Panel: Jo Brosnahan, Lindsay Corban, John Hinchcliff, Carrie Hobson, Peter Kerridge, Elaine McCaw, David McGregor, Tony Nowell, Jim White, Morgan Williams. • Alumni member, Nick Hadley who has designed and maintained our on-line participant forum. • Brian Roche, David Dorrington, Anna Daley and Craig Wallace at PricewaterhouseCoopers, who have provided us with accounting and financial assistance. • The team at Profile Publishing: Publisher: Reg Birchfield; Production Manager: Fran Marshall; Designers: Jan-Michael David and Jenny Askew; Copy-Editor: Gill Prentice. • Clare Turner and her team at Red Consulting. • Katherine Turner for her financial management advice and coaching. The Programme Speakers Opening Retreat Frances Tweedy, Pat Snedden, Bob Harvey, Tony Nowell, Jenny Gill Session Two Simativa Perese, Manying Ip, Joris de Bres, Diana Crossan, Judy McGregor, Jo Brosnahan, Murray Campbell Session Three Ross Wilson, John Hinchcliff, Diane Robertson, Campbell Roberts, Rod Oram Session Four Brian Easton, Debbie Chin, Margaret Wilson, Maarten Wevers, Mark Prebble, Mai Chen Session Five Morgan Williams, Tom Mandeno, Larry Fergusson, Warren Moran, John Buck, Philip Gregan, Jim van der Poel
issue 2 WINTER 2006
Join the conversation We are delighted to bring to you another impressive range of diverse and insightful opinions and experiences of individuals who have agreed to talk about the many facets of leadership in this second issue of Leaders magazine. The leaders who have contributed their reflections, observations and stories to our pages, are actively engaged in increasing the value of their contribution to the economic, social and environmental success of New Zealand. “Leadership must be continually on top of where the community wants to go,” Sir Tipene O’Regan told our 2005 graduate, Chris Fogarty, when he talked to him about the leadership challenges involved in securing the Ngai Tahu Treaty Settlement and the ongoing challenges facing a new generation of tribal leaders. The ever inspirational Sir Paul Reeves, a former New Zealand Governor General, excited the audience with his speech to the 2005 Leadership New Zealand graduates and we have printed his speech in full, so that all our readers and supporters may have the opportunity to reflect on his challenge to ‘enlarge our debates’. He recounts a conversation with a group of 150 Asians, during which they told Sir Paul: “what we need is an expanded space to explore the great issues that face us”. Leaders’ pages is one of those spaces, and we look forward to continuing these and other discussions with you. This issue also introduces the 2006 Leadership New Zealand programme participants. We already appreciate the many and varied skills, areas of expertise and the passion they bring to a year of learning. And we also catch up with the Class of 2005 to answer the question: where are they now? We hope you will enjoy reading this issue of Leaders and be stimulated by the contributions from leaders like Associate Professor Manying Ip, Leadership New Zealand Advisory Trustees Jenny Gill and Morgan Williams, Chief Executives John Allen, Andrew Stone and Allan Freeth, Trustees Peter Kerridge and Reg Birchfield, and Leadership New Zealand Chairman Jo Brosnahan, all of whom bring a wealth and depth of
Contents Where are the Wise? Jo Brosnahan
Leadership and Philanthropy Jenny Gill
Leadership and the Ultimate Storm Morgan Williams
Sir Tipene O’Regan: Front Foot Leadership 5 Having Their Say: Thoughts From the Class of 2006 8 So What is Leadership? Sir Paul Reeves Graduation Night 2005
Alumni – Reflections from ’05
Manying Ip – My Chosen Land
Leadership – A Tango of Emotions 24 Allan Freeth A Big Bold Vision Peter Kerridge Keeping a Leader’s Profile Reg Birchfield
Friends of Leadership New Zealand John Allen, Andrew Stone
Leadership Scholarship Programme
Programme of Activities 2006
Make More Partners Lesley Slade
integrity and intellect to the conversation around leadership. We invite you to become part of the conversation on these and other leadership issues. Write to us with your responses and thoughts and we’ll publish as many of them as as we can in our September issue.
A Life In Leadership: Where Are The Wise?
few weeks ago, Mick Jagger came to town with his everlasting Rolling Stones. While some of the team looked a little worn after more than four decades of sex, drugs and rock and roll, Mick sang and moved like a 20 year old. He was a sharp reminder that age does not mean the end of active life. In fact, with age comes wisdom, that canny ability to sum up the situation and provide insight. So where are our active and wise older citizens? Do we make a special place for them in the community? Or are they largely ignored as irrelevant to the productive sectors of New Zealand society? There are a few still playing important leadership roles in the community – but they tend to be the minority. And we unfortunately have an ageist society. A former very able CEO in his late 60s commented to me the other day that he feels invisible; he goes into shops and even the retail assistants ignore him. Of course this will vary from culture to culture: the Maori community has a special place for their kuia and kaumatua, as do the Pacific people. But unfortunately, this is not the case for the majority of the New Zealand community. When I reflect upon those who have influenced me on my leadership journey, I note that we are missing something – where are the thinkers? For those who have most influenced my philosophies of leadership are three old men: whose significant writings were done in their 60s, 70s and 80s. At the age of 60, following a career in AT&T, Robert Greenleaf began a new career. Based upon his thinking following his reading of Herman Hesse’s short novel, Journey to the East, Robert set up the Centre for Applied Ethics, later to become the Greenleaf Institute for Servant Leadership. At the age of 66, he wrote his famous essay – “The Servant as a Leader”. Other essays and books followed, all with the basic premise that leaders must balance the concept of leading and serving within their lives. Peter Drucker died recently at the age of 95. He was still holding seminars in California and still writing and reflecting. No manager or leader could not have been influenced by Drucker. And then there is my favourite writer on community leadership. John Gardner died a few years ago aged 90. In his late 70s, he wrote one of the best books I have read on leadership, entitled exactly that: On Leadership and in his 80s, he became a professor at Stamford after a long and illustrious career. He talked in that book about the importance of community leadership to the USA; leadership dispersed through all segments of society. The next America will be forged “out there” in America’s communities. As the Boomer generation comes through, there will be 2
more and more older citizens. And the cruel reality is that if they are not gainfully occupied in the New Zealand economy, less and less of you are going to support more and more of us. In these days of underemployment, can we afford to lose the skills and the wisdom of those years of experience? And what are the opportunities being lost in the voluntary sector? A retired very successful business man commented the other day that he had offered to assist a couple of community organisations, but they offered him a bucket to stand on a street corner. What a waste! As a recent EEO Trust survey showed, this is the group most prejudiced against in the workplace – 78% of human resources consultants and recruitment consultants believed that older workers face discrimination when looking for work, well above any other category of discrimination. Are the Boomers going to allow themselves to be treated in this way? For after all, we Boomers were the revolutionaries. Where do you think that free love, drugs and rock and roll came from? And flower prints and hippy dresses. And women’s liberation and rock festivals and VW beetles. We shocked our parents and have the capacity to shock our children. We are living longer and we are healthier. We have money and education. And we also have viagra, botox, hip and heart valve replacements. We do not have to leave a fortune to our kids – they are working their own 70 hours a week. We want to ride the Silk Road on a Harley and backpack in South America. Sixty is the new 50. We want to enjoy our music on our iPods and chat to our kids from far away places on Skype. But most of all, we do not want to stop: we want to contribute. And we do not like the R word. So how do we stop the wastage of our older and wiser citizens? How do we ensure that we Boomers are encouraged to contribute and not be part of the brain drain offshore, to join their children? And how do we enable leadership at every age throughout our communities? Charles Handy talks about the future of work in his book The Elephant and the Flea, and in The Empty Raincoat. Flexible work practices, not for profit opportunities and a break down in the prejudices against age are needed to entice this older age group to stay in the workforce. The concept of portfolio careers needs to be developed further. So what does this mean for all of us? We all need to think about what a good life looks like for each of us in that ‘third age’, and we need to be preparing for it now. We also need to be preparing for leadership roles in the community, as part of our life in leadership. Jo Brosnahan, Chairman, Leadership New Zealand.
ADVISORY TRUSTEE’s MESSAGE
Leadership and philanthropy “Effective leaders on the global stage will be those who have the stamina, patience, perseverance, drive, people skills and ‘comfortableness’ with cross-cultural attributes which will enable persuasive communication to achieve results across foreign settings simultaneously. Similar attributes will be required for leaders in local or regional organisations...” Richard Bluck, Executive Director, Leadership Victoria.
eadership Victoria was established in 1990, an initiative of an enlightened Australian philanthropic trust, the Hugh Williamson Foundation. In the 16 years since its inception 476 people have graduated from the Victorian programme and it has provided the model for the development of Leadership New Zealand. The impact of Leadership Victoria can be seen across the state and the country. In its widest definition philanthropy can be defined as the “love of mankind”. Conventionally however, we think only of the sharing of wealth. The great New Zealand philanthropists, from Apihai Te Kawau in 1840 to John Robert McKenzie in 1940, have first and foremost been leaders in their community and have demonstrated not only a material generosity but a generosity of spirit which is, I believe, one of the defining characteristics of a true leader. New Zealand has a strong philanthropic tradition, starting with the gift by Ngati Whatua paramount chief Apihai Te Kawau of 12,000 acres of land in Tamaki Makaurau to Governor Hobson, followed by Sir John Logan Campbell whose bequest in 1901 gifted Cornwall Park to the people of New Zealand and established a grant-making trust that still continues today. In 1940 Sir John McKenzie, New Zealand’s pre-eminent retailer, established the J R McKenzie Trust with an initial capital base of £300,000, later expanding it to £1 million, making it the largest trust in Australasia at that time. Sixty-six years later the J R McKenzie Trust continues to be a major force in the development of the community sector in New Zealand. Sir Roy McKenzie, the son of the founder, has been a leader in the development of many social ventures in New Zealand and he will be remembered as much for his leadership, his innovative thinking and his championing of the underprivileged as he will be for his personal philanthropy. More recently in 1995 the Tindall family, founders of the highly successful The Warehouse chain, established The Tindall Foundation, driven by a desire to support initiatives in New Zealand which assist communities to help themselves and to heal problems rather than manage them. The Tindall Foundation is currently the largest independent private foundation in Australasia and Stephen Tindall a successful business leader in his own right, who is now applying not only his assets but his vision and leadership capacity to addressing some WINTER 2006
of the underlying social problems facing contemporary New Zealand. Arguably his leadership and his vision are at least as important as the grants made by his foundation. Thanks to some visionary leadership in the late 1980s in the government of the day and in the trustee savings bank movement, New Zealand now has a unique set of philanthropic grant-making trusts: the 12 community trusts that were established as a result of the sale of the Trustee Savings Banks. The combined assets of these community assets are now just under $2.5 billion with $90 million per year paid out in grants and donations. Two of these trusts, the ASB Community Trust and the Community Trust of Southland, are supporters of Leadership New Zealand because we can see the importance to the community sector of having both bold and visionary leaders in the sector, but also of having leaders in the both the public and private sectors who understand the communities that they live in and the communities that they serve. Grants from trusts and foundations can be seen as a source of the venture capital for social change and innovation in society. We are familiar with the concept of venture capital for innovative business development, but perhaps less familiar with the idea of the venture capital for social change. Many of the major innovations in New Zealand society, institutions such as the hospice movement, the women’s refuge movement and the development of Kohanga Reo were given their early funds by New Zealand philanthropists who having been successful in business turned their attention and skills to acting as venture capital investors in the community sector. A healthy society requires not only the ‘venture capital’ that a grant from a trust or foundation or a wealthy individual can provide, but also the vision for a better society that a leader provides. This adds up to what Harvard academic Robert Putnam called “social capital”, in his book entitled Bowling Alone. Putnam posited that the strength of any society lies in the connections between individuals that form a dense network of social relations that in turn strengthen society. He has observed and documented a breakdown in social capital in contemporary American society. One of the challenges currently facing New Zealand society is to build social capital. Developing leaders is part of this challenge. The New Zealand trusts and foundations that have supported Leadership New Zealand have recognised the importance of developing leadership, as a part of developing social capital and social cohesion in our communities. Leadership New Zealand is playing a key role in the development of social capital in New Zealand. Jenny Gill is Chief Executive, ASB Trust, and a Leadership New Zealand Advisory Trustee. Jenny spoke at the opening retreat of the 2006 Programme.
ADVISORY TRUSTEE’s MESSAGE
Leadership and the ultimate storm
he greatest calls for leadership we have ever known will emerge over the next few decades as we face the challenge of global climate change. Our current preoccupation with terrorism will soon seem a costly distraction. As Tim Flannery, author of the excellent book, The Weather Makers, has said: “If humans pursue a business-as-usual course for the first half of this century, I believe the collapse of civilisation due to climate change becomes inevitable.” Changes in virtually all spheres of human existence are needed. John Elkington, founder of SustainAbility, Britain’s oldest sustainability consultancy, believes that climate change is more about economics than environment. And to effect change will require “a fundamental restructuring of the global economy”, according to Elkington. The 21st century will be essentially different from the last, he says, a message that politicians and corporate leaders generally have not grasped. I believe sustainability leadership should focus on three areas: what we need to know, what we need to understand and measure, and what we can do to lead. Most New Zealanders live in towns removed from the biotic world that sustains us. Supermarkets and cars are great insulators from the ecological systems we are part of. To respond to climate change, for example, we should know the greenhouse gas component of everything we do and buy. But that does not appear on our product labels, electricity bills, or even our cars. We need big changes in education for sustainability too. The Hamilton City Council has developed a very innovative EnviroSchools programme now operating in over 300 primary schools nationwide. It’s a great example of local government leadership but unfortunately it has received little central government support. At the tertiary level, the 2002 Tertiary Education Strategy begins with a strong focus on sustainability but then fades. The 35 ‘objectives for action’ fail to refer to it – an extraordinary omission, given tertiary graduates are future decision-makers, but indicative of the transformational leadership needed. To keep track of our own health we monitor our weight and our diet, and get periodic medical checks for eyesight, hearing, and heart functions. We should adopt the same approach to measure trends in the health of our natural capital – our water, soils, biodiversity, air and seas – and the impact of our demands. What are the effects of driving more kilometres each year and importing more cars? How are they related to where we work and live? Our regional councils do a good job of providing information on things such as water quality at popular beaches, rivers and lakes. Similarly, the Department of Conservation and others do an excellent job tracking the numbers of icon species such as the kiwi and the kakapo. However, unlike many other countries, New Zealand has not developed a simple set of sustainability or 4
environmental indicators. Britain has 15 ‘headline’ sustainability indicators including employment, greenhouse gas emissions, air quality, health, education, investment, road traffic, wildlife, land use and waste. They are widely publicised and provide a much more valuable picture of a nation’s wellbeing than gross domestic product (GDP). Eight New Zealand cities have jointly developed a set of indicators and some councils are now producing state-of-theenvironment reports. Statistics New Zealand recently pulled together more national environmental data. But without a set of national indicators it is very hard to build consensus. Vitriolic debates take place on the basis of poor information. My sense is that communities and local government must give central government the courage to develop the indicators we need to navigate our future. We must constantly question the impact of everything we do, buy, and dispose of. When you buy cheap carrots, remember the grower is the steward of a complex living ecosystem called soil. It must be maintained year after year from the returns on the
Personal leadership is important, but support and team thinking are the ultimate determinants of success. carrots. Yet the market model, which competes for your dollar on price, regularly pays growers less than the ecological cost of production. Your cheap carrots include an environmental subsidy. When we consume these ‘below cost’ carrots we are, in reality, eating a little of our finite planet. Similarly, cheap electric heaters are very inefficient at converting electricity into warmth. Over its life, a cheap heater will use more electricity to provide warmth than a more efficient heating system or a better-insulated house. Again, a cheap purchase masks a high cost in natural capital terms. Being a sustainability leader is too often considered anti-business or anti-progress. But to focus on our quality of life in a world racing towards many limits is truly to lead. Sustainability leadership must come from government in new partnerships with society. Policy and fiscal frameworks to allocate critical resources must be led nationally, particularly in a small country of four million, and we must support those political representatives who take bold steps on the tough sustainability issues. Supporting others is a fundamental leadership skill. Personal leadership is important, but support and team thinking are the ultimate determinants of success. On sustainability, team play is essential. Dr Morgan Williams is the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment and a Leadership New Zealand Advisory Trustee. He spoke to the Leadership New Zealand Programme in June.
Sir Tipene O’Regan: Front Foot Leadership By Chris Fogarty Is there a different perspective and different leadership styles within the Pakeha and the Maori worlds? I think there are various generic elements in all leadership. They are to do with the ability to transmit a dream, a vision or a view of a horizon. And then one of the first things that leadership involves is having a clear group of people to lead. Then if one is going to secure their mandate to represent their views, or represent a position on their behalf, one’s got to be able to develop a view of the horizon, of what might be possible. Then be able to articulate that in a way which allows people to engage in it. To do that you’ve got to develop some measure of belief that you have the capacity to get to a particular horizon.
Sir Tipene and Lady Sandra O’Regan.
n 1998 Ngai Tahu and the Crown concluded a landmark Treaty settlement that effectively covered the South Island. The $170 million agreement included a raft of provisions that secured many of Ngai Tahu’s traditional assets along with an apology from the Crown. Settlement came almost 150 years after Ngai Tahu first highlighted their case. Sir Tipene O’Regan chaired the Ngai Tahu negotiating team and became the public face of one of the largest and most successful claims under the Treaty of Waitangi. Eight years on from the final settlement Sir Tipene reflected on the leadership challenges in securing that outcome and outlined the problems a new generation of tribal leaders face to ensure it’s not squandered. Throughout the interview Sir Tipene, who now holds a range of senior positions across business and government, gave glimpses of the traits that no doubt helped achieve the settlement outcome. He has a way with words, an uncompromising approach, (although one that is not overtly aggressive), and he was prepared to give the critics as good as they gave. While some interviewees duck and weave questions uncomfortably, Sir Tipene seemed to relish getting on the front foot. What follows is an edited version of a wide ranging discussion where the interviewer got most questions smacked squarely back over his head. WINTER 2006
You are effectively saying that you have to have the self-confidence and belief in yourself before you can engage anyone else to follow? If that belief does not exist in there somewhere, then you are defrauding them and yourself to some extent in that you are engendering hopes that can’t be achieved. So you have to have some belief that they can happen. In some cases, there are issues that, in the course of a particular leadership journey, will unfold and in those cases, you have to seize the moment and make judgement calls. You can only do that if you have a belief that significant majorities that fall within your constituency will accept the outcome. You have got to have a pretty frank idea of what you can commit those you are representing to and what you can’t. There was always pressure during the Ngai Tahu negotiations. We were frequently pressured by the Crown to speak for a block of Ngai Tahu interests that we didn’t have a mandate on. I have always taken some pride in the fact that even my worst detractors, and there was more than one, were never able to successfully accuse me of not having a mandate. I put a lot of work into that because I believe it to be important. Often in relation to leadership on Maori issues there is the accusation that there is just too much talk and not enough action. Well that may be the case but if I compare that with the processes that they place under the Resource Management Act in consultation, the cost of that and the amount of nonsense that is articulated in that, my view is that Maori hold up quite well – by comparison. But over time, you develop some un5
derstanding of what you need to consult on and what you don’t and that is a part of constant communication. I think the most draining part of the long-drawn Ngai Tahu settlement pro-cesses was the constant travel up and down the islands, speaking to small groups of people at key points and taking them through the options in front of you and what you think might be able to be achieved. I found that if they are actively communicated with, the rank and file of the Maori community will be very staunch and supportive of the leadership. There is always the fact, though, that a person, or a few individuals, who are actually members of your tribal group by kinship but who are not engaged or not involved can object or lead protests, and they get a huge amount of attention from the media. So why did Ngai Tahu succeed with the first major Treaty settlement? Especially as you’ve said you had a lot of groups to bring together over a wide geographical area. People tend to forget that the Ngai Tahu case was first filed and first advanced in 1849, that it had been running for a very long time and had a long political history. We weren’t going to go for a settlement at any cost. At the end of the day, the registered members of the tribe, the adult members that were on the role, had to make a call that they were in favour of or opposed to the package. And the package had a measure of complexity to it. It needed to be articulated and understood. Some of the potential of that has not been realised by my successors but that happens in the ordinary world. But the leadership must continually be on top of where the community being led wants to go and reasonably sensitive to the shifting moves that take place over time. A lot of leaders have talked about how their greatest learning has been from their mistakes. For you going through the settlement process – what was your biggest mistake and how did you learn from that? My biggest mistake was in the fishery settlement. In that I trusted the philosophical integrity in terms of the Treaty and Treaty principles of my northern associates and their legal advisors. They were more than happy to sell out the Treaty for a Pakeha equity thesis. That was a bitter mistake and Ngai Tahu has been the worse for it, but with a reasonable commercial management Ngai Tahu had the capacity and still has the capacity with good political leadership and good commercial management to overcome the relative disadvantage. Through the course of leading an issue over a long period, you also learn quite a lot. Indeed, if you are not constantly assessing and reassessing and learning and able to come back and say, ‘well we got that bit wrong, we need to change the model in some respects’, then I think you fail in your duty as a leader. Are people forgiving of mistakes? They can be if you are honest enough about it. And from time to time, you do need to point out that your batting average has been such that you will be bowled out. The important thing is that on your batting average you keep ahead. Traditionally Pakeha society has seen Maoridom and their leadership structures as a united entity. It has always been more convenient to see Maori relation6
ships in terms of race rather than rights. And when you do that, you desperately want to homogenise everyone and everything. When I was fronting Ngai Tahu, I was regularly challenged by both friend and foe as to why I wasn’t doing something about the gang issues in Auckland or poverty in Hawkes Bay, and whilst I may have had some sympathy and ability to personally identify with the people who were struggling with those questions, they weren’t my responsibility and they weren’t the responsibility necessarily of my people. But the wider society would call that tribal chauvinism. Yet I have never seen people in Invercargill getting passionately anxious about traffic congestion in Auckland. For some reason, if you can block people into a race group, you tend to assign various areas of social dysfunction on a race basis and it is very convenient. It is a slip shod way of thinking but it arises essentially from the colonial practice or preference for trying to convert every rights issue into a race issue as a way of avoiding the rights issue. But isn’t tribalism almost as inherently dangerous as colonialism? Isn’t there a danger for Maori leadership that wider common goals will be undercut by constant tribal disputes? Chauvinism is always a problem whether it be national chauvinism, provincial chauvinism or tribal chauvinism, but the tribe itself is the body or the group that holds the rights secured and guaranteed by the Treaty of Waitangi. If the Treaty of Waitangi means anything, it means it is a series of guarantees. And those rights pertain to tribes. The iwi or hapu that have those rights, there are elements also within iwi, within tribes in which you accord rights. Just because I am of Ngai Tahu descent doesn’t automatically mean that I have rights to the muttonbirds on the iwi islands. They belong to a particular group within Ngai Tahu. Just because I am of Ngai Tahu descent doesn’t automatically mean that I have particular rights in various resources to do with pounamu or greenstone. The tribe as a whole, has to recognise those regional interests in its dealings. Is there anyone then that you see in the Maori leadership structure in New Zealand who you feel can stand up and talk on behalf of Maoridom generally? No. I don’t see anyone similarly in the Pakeha world who can just stand up and speak on behalf of New Zealanders generally except in the most vague and broad terms. But are there, say for example, iconic people such as Sir Edmund Hillary who can stand up? But he doesn’t speak for Pakeha; he speaks for people who like mountains and people who like a certain range of activities. And he wouldn’t presume to speak for the world generally. So can a specific Maori political party represent the views of all Maori? The challenge for the Maori party is the measure to which it can represent adequately, the interests of iwi and Treaty principles and the particular interests of Maori individuals in those respects in which they differ from those of the general population. But I’m not hostile at all to the evolution of a Maori party or any particular party that is part of the model that has evolved in New Zealand. Now I might not be hugely www.leadershipnz.co.nz
enthusiastic about separate Maori political representation, but like all political representation, it is transitional. One of the things that the corporate entity of Ngai Tahu is well known for is putting the best person forward for the job be they Maori or Pakeha. I’ve argued for that model and I’ve got no objection to having non-Ngai Tahu people working for us. The critical issue however, is that should not be used as a device for excluding Ngai Tahu from participation in its structures or involvement or employment of its structures. So could a non-Ngai Tahu employee assume a senior governance role? No, governance belongs to the owners. You couldn’t see a non-Ngai Tahu CEO? That would be like having a non-New Zealand citizen in the New Zealand Parliament. How does that, to perhaps the eyes of many New Zealanders, differ from the colonial approach of, “we can’t see a Maori actually sitting within this organisation”? Because you’re thinking Maori, which is a western Pakeha concept. I don’t think Maori when I’m dealing in the Maori world I think of Ngai Tahu, I think of Ngapu, I think of Ngati Tuwharetoa. When you want to apply an ethnic collective label you use Maori, now that’s convenient in the same way as it is convenient for Maori to talk of Pakeha. But generally in the use of Pakeha we are not including people of the Chinese community or the Islamic community, or the Italian community. There are obviously areas of overlap. Just as there are areas of overlap between Maori citizens and non-Maori citizens. A lot of Maori in their late 20s or 30s have dismissively described some of the leadership of your generation as a “potato leadership” – brown on the outside, white on the inside. I know. That’s alright. That’s the sort of stuff you get from people who generally do not have to wrestle with the kinds of issues or the kind of focus which my generation have had. I have a profound love of the English language and a profound love of the real Maori, I’m far better in the former than the latter. I rejoice in the fact that I have a child who is an outstanding exponent of kura and I rejoice in the fact that I have fluently bilingual grandchildren and that’s more than enough glory for me than to worry about clever comments about potato leadership. Do you find it offensive? When I hear people making those sort of comments, I say, ‘who do you represent, what are your competencies and have your people asked you to do something’? I have great pleasure in the fact that the generation coming behind me are, as a result of some of the changes that my generation was able to implement, more culturally competent in some respects and better educated. Do you have confidence in the leadership coming through? I’m reasonably confident that it will emerge. But do you have confidence in their ability? Well they will have a greater range of skills than we had. But WINTER 2006
we now are dealing in managing iwi assets and iwi affairs – issues that we didn’t have to deal with previously. We were always beneficiaries in the sense that we were inherently dependent on various arms of the state every time we wanted to get something done with our marae or fix a marae roof or build some toilets, get some new mattresses or indeed run some scholarship programme. Today we have an asset base which we did not have before and whilst that doesn’t solve everything – there is a considerable challenge in developing an institutional capacity for managing that asset base and securing it on a generational basis. The wider society doesn’t secure assets on an intergeneration basis except occasionally infrastructural stuff that is too big to take away, like roads and dams and bridges. Yet we are expected and required to hold an iwi’s assets intergenerationally. To protect them and to grow them. And we are also expected to do something with them. And we don’t have institutional structures. We never had to do it before and the larger society offers no models. We don’t have comparative models in the western world. We are trying to do something and invent something within Maori that the wider society has proven itself spectacularly incompetent at. Look at the number of major companies that have disappeared from our screens in the past few years – the capital is still there but it is now in different hands. So the key challenge for a new generation of Maori leaders is to institute a very different business model? The requirements on the new Maori leadership are very different from the requirements that were placed on my generation. We had to drive businesses, make investments and do a whole range of things at the same time as we were prospering the growth of marae, prospering the arts and skills, driving the rejuvenating of Te Reo Maori. Now we have a more complex long-term issue which requires a much more skilled and informed and better-educated leadership. But skill is only one thing. There has to be both philosophy and political purpose and some kind of commitment to the notion that your particular tribal community should actually have a future. The first great question is where that group must want to be in 30 to 50 years’ time. There has to be some forward view that the people are saying we want to be a people, a tribal nation at some future point. And if you want to get there, then you have got to do various things to achieve that. The first point has to be that general collective will. One of the things that a lot of the people have talked about at Leadership New Zealand sessions is the support of their spouse and the impact their leadership positions have had on their personal lives. If I had been worried about work/life balance I wouldn’t have done what I was doing or have done. I am now trying to achieve something and finding it difficult but in the years that I have left I want to have a greater level of balance. Doug Kidd, who was the Minister of the Crown, once said to me in relation to Parliament that, “the only way you win around here is by never going to sleep”. At some phases of pushing and driving these issues through, the only solution is to keep working when everyone else has to rest. I think I have had no balance in that sense of my life and I’m keen to see some. 7
Having Their Say Thoughts from the class of 2006 Jane Aickin I am proud to work for Te Rauhitanga Taiao, the Auckland Regional Council. My role is about helping Aucklanders escape, discover their sense of place and celebrate the delights of living in Tamaki Makaurau. I am the Group Manager of Visitor Services and Assets in the Parks Directorate of ARC. My day involves working with a fabulous team of talented people who do everything from farming business management, regional park acquisition, education and interpretation, asset management, recreation and open space policy and planning and recreation activity management.
I am hoping to gain, via my participation in the Leadership New Zealand programme of 2006, a broader understanding of the fabric of New Zealand society. I would like to grasp some of the opportunities we all have of leading New Zealand into the future in a sustainable way that brings hope and opportunity to future generations. In particular I am looking forward to networking with a broad range of leaders from throughout New Zealand and working with a group of talented people to broaden my horizons and challenge my paradigms. Having now embarked on the year I am particularly encouraged by the richness and talent of people within the programme. I also love the readings and am challenging myself to study New Zealand’s history and te reo Maori (the latter will have to wait until sometime in the near future!).
Dean Astill My background has been production horticulture within the fruit industry which has included apples, stone fruit and kiwifruit. I entered the industry at the age of 17 after leaving school as a horticultural apprentice and completed a national certificate in horticulture. I progressed rapidly and found myself managing a very large pip fruit operation in Hawke’s Bay, which I did for four years. More recently I have been working in the field service/logistics part of the company and am now focusing on sales and marketing of produce, but mainly fruit. The company I work for is Fresh NZ, based in
Hawke’s Bay, and I have worked for Fresh NZ for 11 years (starting back as an apprentice). My sales role now includes many international markets as well as being involved in the New Zealand domestic market and process crops for Heinz Wattie’s. In November 2005, I won the “Young Horticulturalist of the Year” award, which was a huge highlight in my professional career. My key learning goals for the year are to explore and develop leadership skills, to learn more about myself, meet, network and interact with other like-minded people and to increase self-confidence levels. I really am looking forward to all aspects of the Leadership New Zealand programme.
Ian Balme I am a Waikato farmer with a background in forestry and business, and a councillor for Environment Waikato. In this role I have a responsibility to ensure the council has a clear focus on what results it needs to achieve for the environment and the community, and to work with my fellow councillors to create the organisational leadership to make that happen. I find the many strands of leadership fascinating. This programme is providing me with learning in two areas: practi-
cal insights into leadership from excellent leaders; and the opportunity to get to know and learn from people in a diverse range of public and private sector organisations. By the end of the programme I’m confident I will have more understanding of my own leadership style and be better equipped to build consensus within the council and community. This is building on my business experience in which achieving specific results is critical, so I believe my community leadership offers the potential for building stronger consensus around measurable results. Environment Waikato has a lot of very talented, motivated, and committed people and I want to contribute to the organisation’s leadership as part of an equally outstanding council.
meGAN BARCLAY I manage the Customer Experience and Customer Care teams for Vodafone New Zealand and I drive the implementation of an end-toend Vodafone Branded Customer Experience (VBCE) across all customer segments and service touchpoints. I do this by engaging with the business and all service channel teams to influence and deliver the definition, requirements and measures across people capability, process and technology platforms that deliver an endto-end customer experience. I act as a key guardian of the customer experience through the wider business by influencing product, process, policy and
communication activities that have an impact on customers. I have three teams who report to me: Passionate People – recruitment specialists and learning and development leaders and trainers; Quality Champions – a team who provide a quality review process across all aspects of our customer service experience; and Customer Delight – who develop plans to implement improvement to processes and procedures relating to customer experience. My learning goals are to expand my perspective on all aspects of life in New Zealand, to enable me to become a more effective leader, decision-maker and an influential driver of change. I am also seeking to gain greater awareness of different areas of New Zealand life to assess how I can contribute and truly make a difference to the direction of this nation and the lot of our people.
Tom Bennett I am a Partner with the law firm Bell Gully and have practised law for a little over 14 years. I have been with Bell Gully since 1998 and over that time I have advised a range of private and public sector organisations on a variety of corporate and commercial law matters. In recent years, local government has comprised a significant portion of my work. I’m also a
member of the New Zealand China Trade Association and the New Zealand Council for Infrastructure Development. The Leadership New Zealand programme offers an opportunity to be exposed to a broad range of views, not just from speakers but also participants. The quality of the speakers is remarkable. Already, listening to them has been a thoughtprovoking and humbling experience. The course also offers an opportunity for reflection – something not easily done in this busy world – particularly on our values and aspirations as New Zealanders.
Rachel Brown I am the Chief Executive Officer of the Sustainable Business Network (SBN), a not-for-profit incorporated society with a national office and five regional offices in Tauranga, Wellington, Auckland, Christchurch and Hamilton. We are a membership organisation whose purpose is to inspire sustainable action through awareness-raising activities, behavioural change programmes and celebration events. SBN staff work proactively with our members to assist them to implement sustainability activities from transport initiatives to community involvement programmes. The SBN is also an organisation of influence with a manifesto aimed at
accelerating sustainability in business to meet our challenge to make New Zealand the model sustainable nation for the world. In my role I support our governance boards and national strategies; manage the SBN national and regional staff, work plans & systems; develop stakeholder relationships; develop resources for business and deliver our corporate partnership programmes. This year my learning goals are to get better and deeper understandings of the key social, cultural, environmental and economic issues facing New Zealand; to learn from the impressive range of existing and emerging leaders; and to strengthen my own style and approach around leadership. My aim is to enhance the effectiveness of my role in sustainable development activism.
Rouruina Brown I work for Manukau City Council. Up until February 28 this year I was the Pacific Peoples Policy Planner. As at March 1, I took up a new role in the Council’s newly formed Events Unit as Project Manager – Events Review, responsible for reviewing the Council’s 2002 Events Strategy as well as developing the Events Policy and action plan. What a privilege it is to be part of Leadership New Zea-
land 2006. I’m thrilled at the thought of being surrounded by amazing, intelligent and brilliant men and women in this programme. My key learning goals this year revolve around self-discovery and self-evaluation and learning from other like-minded people who are driven by their desire to succeed through developing others. My goal is to acquire knowledge on ‘anything and everything’ and put it into practical use. Success for me this year means knowing more than I did yesterday, that my perspectives today become a little clearer and that I’ll do things just a little better tomorrow. Thank you Leadership New Zealand for this wonderful opportunity to grow.
Maureen Crombie I am the Strategic Planning Manager for Franklin District Council. My role is to develop and manage the corporate strategic planning documents and provide high-level support to the Director: Strategic Planning and Policy in the review and development of Councilâ€™s strategic intent. There is a particular focus on the strategic planning framework, long-term council community plan, annual plans and reports. The role also includes a full review of all Council services and development of a performance evaluation system. It requires an in-depth understanding of the framework surrounding local government strat-
egy and the ability to effectively lead and communicate across the organisation. My key learning goals for the year include: gaining wisdom and acquiring understanding especially around what makes a good leader, and developing key leadership attributes, for example drive, judgement, listening, optimism and vision. I will also: keep a journal with a focus on leadership insights and reflections; read more and expand my subject matter including New Zealand history; develop greater knowledge and understandings for the fight against the commercial sexual exploitation of children, in support of my ECPAT New Zealand and ECPAT International board roles and share relevant learnings from Leadership New Zealand programme sessions with the executive team.
Richard Dempster I am the Divisional Manager for Network Asset Management at Northpower in Whangarei. I manage a team of 24 engineers and technical staff who have responsibility for the management of Northpowerâ€™s lines business and power station. My role is to ensure our asset management strategies are sustainable while meeting the current and future needs of the community. My goal for the Leadership New Zealand programme is to
broaden my social awareness and take time to reflect on the impact I can have on improving wider social issues. I hope to achieve this through understanding what the economic, cultural and social development needs of our country are and by having direct engagement with those who are at the forefront of addressing these issues. I also plan to leverage off the diverse network of views and opinions that the other participants bring to the programme to help me formulate my views and opinions on key issues. To ensure I maximise the value of the programme I will endeavour to develop a plan of how I can harness the learnings and apply them to my professional and private life.
Quentin Doig I am the National Support Services Manager at ACC and manage the operations of a support services group of staff, who are engaged in health procurement, IT and general procurement facilitation and contract administration, property leasing and maintenance, website information management services, health, safety and sustainability. I have been a people leader and manager for 27 years both professionally and in various community functions. Although I prepare this profile after only two months of the programme I have already had my thinking challenged and my knowledge broadened in a number of areas. Participants are presented
with a wonderful opportunity to listen to speakers on a wide range of topics and to question them in an open forum. Participants come from a diverse range of occupations, experiences and backgrounds. Discussions have been invigorating, thought provoking, insightful and, certainly in my case, opinion changing. Taking the time to concentrate on thinking and entering into spirited debate with a variety of outstanding leaders is proving to be a wonderful learning experience and I am already gaining a great deal from a renewed desire to learn. This is a very powerful learning experience as it exposes us to a rich and wide range of topics and speakers over the course of a year, the quality of which would be hard to match in any other learning experience. I am very grateful that I have been given the opportunity of participating in the 2006 Leadership New Zealand experience.
Peter Fenton I lead the Postal Services Group for New Zealand Post. This consists of all the operational teams – around 7000 mail processing people, box lobby workers, RuralPost drivers and posties. This is a huge leadership challenge: ensuring customer confidence in the integrity and performance of our processing and delivery networks, driving a sense of purpose and direction for the business and, critically, building a capacity for change deep in the Postal business. The Leadership New Zealand programme represents for me a precious opportunity to be exposed to a whole range of contem-
porary New Zealand issues and challenges. It is rare to have the privilege to hear directly from a range of leading New Zealanders, discuss these issues and challenges with a diverse group of informed and engaged participants and be able to reflect deeply on what these issues and challenges mean for me, personally, as a leader but also what they mean for New Zealand Post as we continue to embrace change internally and through the market, customer, technology, society and community dimensions. The space, time and ability to consider these contemporary issues and learn through discussion and interaction with this diverse group of participants – who at their core share a belief that people can make a real difference and contribution and who are equally ambitious for New Zealand – is a key goal for me in my development as a leader.
Milton Henry I am a secondary school teacher at Selwyn College, which has a wellestablished reputation in performing arts, a rich multicultural population and a philosophy of inclusiveness and tolerance. I am head of Media Studies. Developing students’ critical thinking, and ensuring academic success is an integral part of my teaching. Analysing contemporary media issues and developing students’ film projects are highlights of the senior courses. I am also involved with the National Association of Media Teachers (N.A.M.E.). This year I am part of the Ministry’s Beacon School project. I am also a Dean at Selwyn. This is a shared pastoral role in which we guide and support sometimes
troubled students on a range of educational, social and emotional issues. The third significant aspect of my job is as Teacher-Librarian. I teach at Selwyn because of its philosophy based on openmindedness, flexibility, and a deep respect for staff and students. Selwyn has co-principals and a rotating management team. This sharing of responsibility encourages the entire school population to negotiate new situations and accept collegial decisions. The pervasive atmosphere in the school is one of trust and friendship and I love the vitality and interest of my students. I have a variety of learning goals for 2006. I’m excited about experiences and contributions made by significant New Zealanders. I’m interested in the process of decision-making and I want to be part of an enquiring, supportive group who are curious about the future of New Zealand.
Cheryl Holloway From lawyer to snowshoe guide to consultant, in three easy steps. An interesting journey that continues to evolve. As my own boss, I can now choose and create work projects to reflect my own values and aspirations. What sorts of projects? Cross-cultural communications, of course. What quicker path to world peace and understanding? If we could all communicate, respect and understand one another a little better, just imagine the difference we could make.
And why not start in our own ‘backyard’? Kaahu Communications supports communication between organisations and communities. Our special focus is Maori communities. We aim to contribute to whanau, hapu and iwi development, and thereby improve outcomes for the community as a whole. New Zealand has much to gain if we can all communicate, respect and understand one another a little better. My key learning goal for this year? To challenge and be challenged. What better way to learn? If my thinking is malleable, I can try out different perspectives. I can access more hearts and minds. I can dream up and create more solutions. I am ready to lead and inspire. The timing of this course is perfect.
The Reverend Carole Hughes As an Anglican Priest in the Diocese of Auckland, my responsibilities lie in a number of ministry areas. I am a Co-Vicar in the Anglican Parish of St John’s, Campbells Bay and love living and working in such a wonderful place! My role involves preaching, teaching, planning, worshipping, caring, visiting, meeting, and generally being available for people in the church and wider community, as well as taking Sunday services, baptisms, wedding and funerals. The parish has a large team of both clergy and laity and I enjoy working in such a vibrant community. My community involvement as Co-Vicar includes being a
chaplain to Murrays Bay Intermediate School. I am also involved in the planning and facilitating of a training programme for those who have recently been ordained, and a more recent role is that of Advisor to the Bishop on selection of people for training for ordination. My key goals for the year include having opportunities to listen and to be involved in other people’s stories, and to share information and resources. I grow and learn well when I can sit around a table with a group of people and engage with topics collectively. I am excited about hearing from key leaders around Aotearoa/New Zealand about their experiences and insights. Good leaders are always open to other people’s opinions and to learning more; this is one of my goals for this year. I am also looking forward to building friendships and networks that facilitate healthy leadership models, and offer support and inspiration!
Jackie Kruger I have joined the Leadership New Zealand programme in my community capacity. Roles include that of Invercargill City Councillor, Chair of the Te Ara A Kewa Health Trust, Chair of the Regional Heritage Committee, Chair of Creative Communities Invercargill, President Gymnastics Southland, and Trustee on the South Catlins Development and Environmental Charitable Trust. My responsibilities include setting strategic vision, applying policies that support the vision and monitoring progress through to review and completion. My place on the programme has been sponsored by the Community Trust of Southland and Leadership
New Zealand with additional support from the Invercargill City Council. My learning goals for the year include developing greater self-confidence, becoming more astute at ‘selling’ my vision, and developing courage to lead from the front. In short, I am seeking an accelerated path to increased wisdom through listening to and contemplating the experiences of the excellent line-up of speakers for the year. I am also looking forward to the opportunity to interact with other New Zealanders who live and work in different places to me, and who have different views on how the world works. That in itself will be an exciting part of the experience for me and will no doubt contribute to personal growth, inspired debate and a more holistic view of New Zealand’s ‘big picture’ for the future.
Alistair Kwun I manage my own public relations consultancy, which provides communications solutions to local and central government agencies, education and youth sector, ethnic communities, creative organisations and practitioners. An important component of my work is connecting communities through arts and culture. I’m driven by dynamic projects that build strong and vibrant communities and enable a social-cultural-creative transformation. What is leadership? One answer is giving yourself to others in a generous and open manner. That has been the cornerstone of my learning to date. Everyone’s view of the world
has shifted a little since we met, and we have come into contact with some challenging stances. I feel totally enriched now, having spent the past several months with others who are committed to exploring shared values and changing the world. Change does not happen through one individual: it takes a collective force to shake the foundations. It is all about working together and creating sustainable networks and relationships. I am humbled by the stimulating stories our speakers have weaved and excited by the opportunities that lie ahead. This programme has equipped me with greater confidence to inspire and empower others in my dream towards creating a more integrated and sustainable New Zealand. I look forward to forging deeper conversations with Leadership New Zealand and my programme peers.
Theresa Le Bas As the Senior Associate of Bell Gully’s Environment and Resource Management Law Team, I ensure that our internal and external clients receive the very best legal service and advice from our team of exceptionally talented solicitors. We specialise in a very dynamic and interesting area of law where we enjoy the added bonus of working throughout the country and alongside a range of experts in town planning, science, engineering, and surveying (to name a few!) who share in our passion for the environment.
Somewhere in amongst all that, I also keep tabs on our Senior Partner (and Leadership New Zealand Trustee) David McGregor. My key learning goal this year is to discover and grow my own leadership qualities through hearing, questioning, challenging and reflecting upon the experiences of others – both my fellow journeymen on this course and the wonderful line-up of speakers who give so generously their time, passion and personal insights. I recognise that leadership is a critical key to my personal and professional future. I am confident that this key will open a door which will allow me to continue to learn and grow and thereby make the best contribution I can to my country’s future.
Kevin Leith As Chief Manager Strategic Development for ASB, I work with a team to develop the strategic direction for the ASB Group of Companies – consisting of ASB Bank, Sovereign, BankDirect, ASB Securities and ASB Group Investments. The core function of my role is the identification and development of strategic initiatives and solutions for the achievement of the Group’s short- and longterm profit and growth objectives. The role provides strategic
support for Group Executive and the ASB Board. My core learning goals for the programme are: to gain a greater breadth of leadership experience in sectors outside of the private corporate sector (such as public and not for profit) to provide me with a broader perspective; to absorb a greater breadth of views, ideas and opinions to assist me in making more informed decisions and to bolster my journey from ‘management’ to leadership. I am also seeking to develop an enhanced ‘tool box’ to assist me further in inspiring others, enacting a clear vision, and supporting me in taking additional risk from which I can learn and grow.
Gavin Pearce I manage the Actuarial Services Team at the Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC). My team is responsible for the valuation of ACC’s outstanding claim liabilities, new benefit costing, statistical analysis of ACC’s claim experience, annual full funding premium recommendations and monitoring of
scheme performance. My key learning goals for the year are to: meet and develop ongoing relationships with business leaders from different industries around New Zealand – both participants of the course (past, current and future) and those who come to speak at the sessions; share experiences and learn from others; further develop my skills as a leader in New Zealand business and identify ways in which I can apply the skills I learn both at work and in my community.
Rangimarie Price I am a consultant in the area of strategic and corporate leadership, a qualified accountant and my background includes corporate strategy and management, strategic partnerships with Maori, resource management, employment relationships and governance. This is drawn from corporate roles in local government, engaging with iwi and hapu authorities, business ownership plus leadership roles in church and voluntary institutions and the chamber of commerce. Together with my husband, I own a company whose focus is providing sustainable business and building solutions centred
on the ethic of “doing the right things”. I am blessed with two gorgeous boys Te Kani and Nikora, plus a huge supportive whanau. Leadership is a privilege and a lifestyle. Enduring leadership serves something greater than self, be it as a parent, a trustee, a CEO or a leader of a country. Life’s journey has allowed me the privilege of adding a number of those experiences to my kete. I am hugely persuaded that the mark of leadership, wealth or success is not defined by what you have amassed, but by what you are prepared to give away. It is my hope that by participating in the Leadership programme I will identify ways that I can add to and shape the future of this country through the communities that I serve.
Neville Pulman I am the Consumer Acquisition Manager heading a team of specialist marketers focused on acquiring new customers to the Vodafone network. My role relies on a detailed understanding of New Zealand customer segments both from value and behavioural points of view. I am one of the few people in our senior marketing team who has a sales and commercial background. Working in such a fast-paced business would be impossible without the unique culture within Vodafone that allows a bit of lunacy and passion along with the constant focus on results.
The care for its people is evident in the investment being made across the board on personal and leadership development. My learning goals for the year are heavily orientated to gaining knowledge about how the public sector operates and secondly to understand more about the size and dimension of New Zealand’s most significant issues. This will give me a solid baseline understanding of the “keys” that are required to enable future social progress in New Zealand. The idea of New Zealanders being more aligned on our core values and prioritised challenges is attractive to me – and then understanding how to effectively contribute to positive progress identifying the leaders to drive that change will complete the picture.
Robyn Scott As Executive Director of Philanthropy New Zealand I lead and develop the key organisation that works to motivate and inspire philanthropists and grantmakers. Good quality, thoughtful grantmaking reaches all corners of Aotearoa, New Zealand. My organisation supports individuals, trusts and foundations that make a difference to our communities by giving in an organised, strategic fashion. Think of philanthropy as a stone thrown into a pool – its effects begin with the individual and then spread through the organisation, the community it serves, the community and voluntary sector as a whole, and eventually all of civil society – it’s a most rewarding role.
This year at Leadership New Zealand I’m hoping to learn from the experiences of others in order to deepen and inform my own leadership. I’m looking forward to the opportunity to delve into issues that are of interest, or are of importance in New Zealand today, to increasing my knowledge about effective leadership. I’m also looking forward to being challenged in order to deepen and clarify my own views – being able to discuss and be informed by some of New Zealand’s greatest leaders is a real privilege – and I feel humbled that these leaders are providing us with honest, free and frank perspectives on leadership. A key strength of this programme is the diversity of participants – the intermingling of people from the community and voluntary, government (local and central) and business sectors – this is a great strength. I look forward to being inspired, motivated and challenged.
Adrian Sole I am the General Manager for the hosting division of ICONZ based in New Plymouth. I am responsible for FreeParking (domain name registrar and Linux web hosting); 2day.com (domain name registrar and Windows web hosting); WebFarm (reseller of domain, web hosting and email solutions); and Intellihost and ICONZ hosting services. We supply the street address for your business to be found on the internet so www.iconz.co.nz is your address in cyberspace, and those pretty pictures your web developer designs for you need
to reside in cyberspace and that is called web hosting and we rent that space. My role is challenging and varied, I work with a dynamic and fun team comprised of technical gurus, accounts and sales/ marketing staff. I am responsible for all aspects of running the divisions, but spend a lot of my time looking at future trends and the market, and giving guidance and direction to the team and to individuals. I believe we never stop learning, and I actively seek growth as an individual, so when the opportunity came for me to go on this programme, I was ecstatic. My learning goals are to continue to grow as a person, to be open and listen to what is being discussed and further develop my thinking.
Parul Sood I am a Waste & EnviroCare Manager working for the Rodney District Council. One of the fastest growing areas in the country, Rodney is now the 11th largest local authority in New Zealand in terms of population. The primary purpose of my role is to act as an advocate/adviser in matters relating to the introduction of waste generated by human activities and/or inefficient use of resources on the natural environment and to identify sustainable methodologies and behaviour for the future. While implementation of programmes arising from this knowledge is often implemented
through cross-Council teams, I have direct service delivery responsibility for management of solid waste and the Waicare programme. My key learning goals for the year are to learn from individual leader’s life experiences. This is a unique opportunity to learn about the challenges they have faced both professionally and personally. Another goal is to gain knowledge on New Zealand history & culture and try to grasp the issues facing the country. I am also anticipating learning a lot from the group of participants and their diverse views, as this challenges thinking and sometimes alters it as well. Given that I am a fairly new immigrant, I feel this is the best opportunity I could have ever had, to learn about the people and country to which I now belong.
Teresa Tepania-Ashton As Chief Executive Officer of Te Runanga A Iwi O Ngapuhi, my primary role is to maintain and grow the assets of the organisation on behalf of the Ngapuhi people. Ngapuhi is the largest tribe in New Zealand with over 107,000 people according to the 2001 census. The organisation’s vision is “kia tu tika ai te whare tapu o Ngapuhi” – “that the sacred house of Ngapuhi stand firm”, to become a body that all Ngapuhi can participate in and be proud of.
To successfully represent Ngapuhi, TRAION is creating and improving relationships with hapu, community groups, other Iwi, local government, Crown Agencies and the Government, by simply identifying true stakeholder relationships. I consider the Leadership programme an excellent opportunity to meet, share and learn from peers who represent a cross-section of community leaders throughout New Zealand. Of primary importance is the ability to open my mind to new ideas that give effect and action to key areas of selfdevelopment. Another goal will be to identify, empower and grow the potential of future leaders both within the organisation and the Iwi.
Koroseta To’o I work as a Senior Analyst: Pacific Policy at the Waitakere City Council and am very much responsible for strengthening the partnership between the Council and the Pacific communities. The relationship between the Council and the Pacific communities has progressed and the integration of the needs of Pacific peoples into Waitakere Council’s policy framework is critical to sustain the partnership into the future.
Leadership plays a vital role in making sure that this partnership survives and my participation in the Leadership New Zealand programme will go a long way in strengthening Council’s work and supporting the needs of Pacific peoples. The main learning goals for me in the Leadership New Zealand programme are: as a strong policy analyst grasping a full understanding and awareness of what the future holds for Pacific peoples in Aotearoa; strengthening my beliefs in sustainable development and unity in diversity – the essence of who we are as New Zealanders; becoming a great leader and role model for Pacific youth.
Laura Vodanovich Working at Auckland Museum as Registrar my core responsibilities include development and maintenance of collection management policies, standards and procedures and effectively managing relationships with donors, lenders, vendors and colleague institutions. I coordinate packing, movement, storage and insurance of the Museum’s collection, exhibition loans and new acquisitions. As Registrar, one of my focuses is risk management in regard to objects within the Museum’s ownership or care. Auckland Museum currently has a major building project underway, and I am project managing the preparation and reloca-
tion of the Museum’s collections from an off-site facility into a new purpose built on-site store as part of this larger project. This involves managing a team who are preparing collections for safe and efficient relocation; including inventorying, packing and pest management. The other side of this project is fitting out the new collection store, where I am responsible for leading a small team focused on ensuring collection management needs are met by the project. This year I hope to lift my vision from beyond the museum sector and my own community to the wider New Zealand and global communities and to gain a larger picture of the real problems and opportunities facing our community and future generations. I also wish to actively participate within a network of people who are interested in the future of New Zealand and New Zealanders.
Meredith Youngson I work for the West Auckland District Council of Social Services (WADCOSS), which provides support and networking opportunities for community organisations in Waitakere City. WADCOSS also manages and administers the Waitakere Community Resource Centre. My role is that of Community Broker working on Project Twin Streams. The aim of Project Twin Streams is to clean up the streams in the Swanson and Henderson catchments using a community development approach, educating and engaging the community about caring for and appreciating their streams. Working in this way will provide communities with opportunities to increase
community cohesiveness and enhance community spirit. My role is to identify key stakeholders in communities who have the ability and vision to carry this project and provide opportunities for their training and professional development. It is a very interesting and exciting job, and I am never sure where it is going to lead me. My key learning goals for this year are to develop a clearer and richer understanding of what it means to be a community leader in Aotearoa New Zealand. I will do this by listening to participants as well as speakers, and also by developing a better understanding of New Zealand and how it is changing and adapting in the current world climate. I believe that understanding myself as a New Zealander will help me to see how I can contribute to making New Zealand a special place to live in for everyone.
Sir Paul Reeves: So What is Leadership? Former New Zealand Governor General Sir Paul Reeves addressed Leadership New Zealand’s first Graduation Dinner in Auckland at the end of last year. “Now it’s your turn to graduate,” he told the audience. “So step us and let’s see what you’re worth and what you really value.” Published here is the full text of Sir Paul’s inspirational speech.
hank you for the invitation to speak. You should know I’m here against my better judgement. I spoke to this group in August, and my instinct is that when an audience says more, more, it’s time to leave – not time to come back. I really should retire from giving these sorts of speeches. I’m getting too old. I come from the age of milkshakes, milk bottles, two fish and a scoop, if you know what I mean. I listen to the Concert Programme. Some people call me wise and that puts me in my place. It’s depressing because I don’t want to be wise, I want to be Tana Umaga. I work with the Human Rights Commission and a month ago we spent a day with 150 Asians talking about the Treaty of Waitangi. They spoke with passion. The young ones in particular spoke as citizens for whom New Zealand is their only home. They are here for good. The Treaty, they claimed, was not written for people like them. It was locked up in an exclusive debate between Maori and Pakeha. Asians, they felt, were seen as having vested interests elsewhere and not to be trusted. They were dismissive of talk about multiculturalism. It promised more than it delivered and left them out in the cold. What we need, they said, is an expanded space to explore the great issues that face us. Let’s enlarge our debates about the Treaty, let’s recognise we are part of a globalised, interconnected world. What are the goals of our society, they asked. Surely we must see beyond the Treaty and see it neither as an end in itself nor as the only source of fairness in this country. But the Treaty could be our pathway through to talk, partnership, participation, protection, development, health and education, what we have to deal with day-by-day. It was an emotional debate. Lengthy but good. Not long afterwards Parliament convened and the new members of the House made their maiden speeches. They were interesting. Bob Clarkson told the country that he asked his wife what she wanted for Christmas and she said a divorce. He replied that he was not thinking of anything quite so expensive. On the other hand Shane Jones, one of the really promising members made an important speech and said this of the Treaty: How do we honour the sentiments underlying this founding document? The future summons us to a relationship that transcends both Crown and tribe… Addressing historical grievances was one chapter in the grand narrative of our nation’s story. Other chapters are materializing around us. As the pace gathers by dint of childbirth, immigration and international influences, the ethics of inclusiveness must be carefully tended. 16
So what is leadership? It can be many things but at the very least leadership is discernment, seeing the issue before it becomes a problem, being open to what is just over the horizon, reading the signs of the times and finding the new context from which the new answers will come. Leadership is both principled and pragmatic. Leaders are prepared to negotiate. Some years ago my wife and I visited Ballylee Castle in the west of Ireland where the poet William Butler Yeats once lived. During World War One he wrote of the chaos and terror he saw around him: Things fall apart, the centre cannot hold, Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world, The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere There ceremony of innocence is drowned; The best lack all conviction, while the worst Are full of passionate intensity That’s a sobering statement but Yeats, like many Anglo Irish, was also a patriot and in the 1920s he sat in the Senate of the new Irish Republic. In one speech Yeats acknowledged that: I have no hope of seeing Ireland united in my time, or of seeing Ulster won in my time, but I believe it will be done in the end, not because we fight it, but because we govern this country well. We can do that, if I may be permitted as a writer and artist to say so, by creating a culture, which will represent the whole of this country and will draw the imagination of the young towards it. Get your culture right and government will come right, Yeats seems to be saying. In this country I don’t think we have yet got our process of election and governance right and, I must admit that in the immediate post-election period when we were spared that interminable chatter from Parliament the national relief was enormous. Let me comment on sport as culture and what it could do for our society. The All Blacks, the Kiwi League team and the Silver Ferns are standout performers. They are young and they accurately mirror the multi-ethnic and multicultural face of who we are. The coaches are all different. Ruth Aitken, poised and groomed; Graham Henry not quite so groomed but emphasising that good people make good players; and Brian McClennan, the players’ coach, jumping up and down, enthusiastic and positive. But these three teams are really like a national ballet where they perform with the grace, skill and commitment of a great company like Black Grace. On the field or court they act out our hopes and fears, they explore what they could do together, they search for common goals and the common good, they show trust and appreciation of each other, they pay the costs and receive the rewards of working together. Of course we want to beat the Aussies, the English or the Springboks but it’s more than just winning or losing. It’s about finding out about ourselves and rejoicing in what we discover. That’s a cultural journey and Yeats says it’s the foundation of good government. www.leadershipnz.co.nz
Let’s keep the sporting image. Mohammed Ali said: Champions aren’t made in gyms. Champions are made from something they have deep inside them – a desire, a dream, a vision. They have to have last minute stamina, they have to be a little faster, they have to have the skill and the will. But the will needs to be stronger than the skill. Skills come and go but the will and how you exercise it can remain strong. The Bible says hope is the anchor of the soul. How do we keep polishing our vision? What keeps us from becoming cynical? Where do our commitments come from? Let me start with something Spike Milligan wrote in “Puckoon.” Money! That was the trouble. Money! The parish was spiritually solvent but financially bankrupt. Money! The Lord will provide but to date he was behind with his payments. Father Rudden had tried everything to raise funds; he even went to the bank. ‘Don’t be a fool Father”, said the manager, “put that gun down.” WINTER 2006
Father Rudden had to be reminded that he was not the first to experience defeat. Nor should we be surprised by defeat or defeated by loss. My discovery was that the Kingdom was to be found in the corners and on the margins, in the larger community and in the eternal hope of humanity. Vehicles and institutions, manifestos and old affiliations constrict us but they can fall away. The tenets of belief may decrease in number but you may believe them more strongly. It’s much more important to be committed to something than to know a bit about everything. It’s important to deconstruct the precious things in our lives and then put them together again. And now it’s your turn to graduate. So step up and let’s see what you’re worth and what you really value. Sir Paul Reeves is Chancellor of AUT and a Leadership New Zealand Advisory Trustee.
Celebrating a Year of Learning
ll good things come to an end, and on December 7 2005, the inaugural Leadership New Zealand Programme participants celebrated the completion of their year of learning at a graduation evening at the beautiful Auckland Botanic Gardens Visitor Centre, and became the first Leadership New Zealand Programme graduates. Mayor Bob Harvey, MC for the evening, hosted the event with grace and flair. Sir Paul Reeves addressed the assembled audience of graduates, their families and employers, Trustees, Advisory Trustees, Programme Speakers and friends, and told
them “skills come and go, but the will and how you exercise it can remain strong”. The strength of will to continue their journey of a life in leadership was evident among the Class of 2005. Their connection with one another was obvious. During the year friendships had grown, and their commitment to each other, and to Leadership New Zealand had strengthened. Their year of learning may have come to an end, but the will to continue their learning and their contribution to New Zealand through leadership was alive and strong.
2005 graduates Rewi Spraggon and Kirsty Hill, with guest. 2. 2005 graduate Gia Nghi Phung, with guest, and 2006 participant Alistair Kwun. 3. Waitakere Mayor and MC extraordinaire for the evening Bob Harvey. 4. 2005 graduate Nick Hadley. 5. Leadership New Zealand Chairman Jo Brosnahan. 6. Leadership New Zealand Chief Executive Lesley Slade. 7. Profile Publishing’s Ruth Le Pla with a guest. 8. Profile Publishing’s Fran Marshall and Kevin Lawrence with Joanna Harrison, Kerridge & Partners. 9. Heartstrings entertains. 10. 2005 graduate Lisa HowardSmith (right) with her family. 11. Councillor John Hinchcliff and Selwyn College Principal Carol White. 12. 2005 graduate Sarah Williams with Michael Goldfinch.
GRADUATION night 2005
13. Auckland Regional Council CEO Peter Winder, TNS Managing Director Murray Campbell, 2005 graduate Vicki Taylor, with guest. 14. Shift Director Selwyn Feary, Leadership New Zealand Trustees
17 WINTER 2006
Lindsay Corban and Pauline Kingi, Leadership New Zealand Advisory Trustee Bob Harvey, and Vector Chairman Brian Corban. 15. 2005 graduates Matthew Bolland (left) and Glenn Hawkins with wives Angela and Sushilla. 16. 2005 graduate Irene Durham with husband Bill, 2005 graduate Mike Davies with wife Heather. 17. Pounamu in action. 18. Leadership NZâ€™s Dallas Fisher.
Alumni – Reflections on ‘05
mmigrating to a new country is an exercise full of strange experiences. Imagine, for the first time in your adult life, having no keys! No home, no car, no job, no friends nearby. And not knowing much about the culture of the country you’ve moved to either, despite reading all you could in advance of your arrival. Joining Leadership New Zealand’s 2005 programme during our first couple of months here became an important part of our integration process. Although clearly not intended for new immigrants, the programme’s mix of culture, history and economics meant it formed the backbone of my first year in New Zealand. And the making of new friends from all backgrounds and experiences has greatly enriched our sense of belonging. We have been able to take advantage of New Zealand’s short “paths to power” and to make friends and connections in places we never contemplated. Because the programme was issues-based rather than technical, we were exposed to the detail of New Zealand life; we got to know what really makes Kiwis proud, angry and sad. We began to understand Treaty issues, farming and politics, and learned how to probe and question. We discussed the media in a TVNZ studio; spent time with the police to help understand what they put up
bout a year ago, I applied to work for the United Nations as an intern in its New York headquarters. The internship programme offers post-graduate students from around the world a two-month working experience. The objectives of the programme are to enhance interns’ educational experience through practical work assignments, to expose interns to the work of the United Nations and to provide United Nations offices with the assistance of qualified post-graduate students specialised in various professional fields. The particular project I was assigned to was the National Competitive Recruitment Exam (NCRE) programme, which attempts to attract highly qualified candidates from countries that are under represented in the United Nations staff. Candidates from these countries could sit the National Competitive Recruitment Exam in their area of expertise (ie. IT, human rights, law, humanitarian, accounting/finance, engineering, public affairs, etc.) and if successful, would go onto a roster to fill a suitable vacancy. During my time we employed the first Mauritian to work for the United Nations through this programme. As part of the internship programme, we were offered au20
with. Sleeping on a marae with 20 other course participants; being shown around Parliament and meeting the Speaker of the House, even if you know a country well, are all great experiences. For us, just finding our feet, they were priceless experiences. After a life in the IT business, I wanted different challenges. Although I established a busy IT consultancy here in New Zealand, Leadership New Zealand made me more aware of social and community issues. As a result, I have invested in a company building a retirement village in Northland. I’m now heavily involved in the legal and marketing aspects, and in the making of day-to-day decisions about where light switches and showers go, and which type of fencing is a better longterm investment! I’ve also joined the committees of two notfor-profit organisations. Some days the newspaper just doesn’t get read. Despite all our protestations about moving to New Zealand for a simpler life, our days are just as busy. They are also more sociable and my bunch of keys is bigger than ever. It just goes to prove the old saying – “wherever you go, you take yourself with you”. – Nick Hadley “retired” from his UK technology company to move to New Zealand with his wife Sue in January 2005.
diences with Permanent Missions from around the world and were invited to attend General Assembly Sessions and meetings of the Security Council and other committees. These were fantastic opportunities. I attended the Permanent Missions of France, Germany, the USA and the Red Cross, and two General Assembly sessions – Kofi Annan’s presentation of the Management Reform proposal to the Member Nations and Deputy Secretary-General Mark Malloch-Brown’s presentation of the Management Reform report to the United Nations staff. One of the highlights of my trip was getting to meet one of my role models, Dr Jeffrey Sachs. The part of the ���������� United Nations that most appeals to me is the area of humanitarian aid and it is Jeff Sachs’ work in clinical economics and sustainable development towards ending poverty in our lifetime that inspired me to apply for the United Nations internship. So, as I write this back in New Zealand, I reflect fondly of my time at the United Nations and the people I met, with an acute awareness of how difficult the challenges are ahead for this organisation. My internship sustained and further fuelled my intention to work towards a career in international humanitarian aid. – Carlene Creighton www.leadershipnz.co.nz
ast year was an important year for me both personally and professionally. When you are busy day to day it can be challenging to step back and check you are on track to spend your time on the things that really matter to you in life, and the Leadership NZ programme was an excellent opportunity to step back and review while also stepping forward. It was a privilege to be reminded of the many paths successful leadership can take. There is no one, successful or right way. For me this was an important and timely reminder… a certain set of skills and style has delivered me to my current place in life, in relationships and in my career. To be shown so many different role models with different approaches and styles is giving me an opportunity to explore my own approach and style. This has not led to any radical changes, but an exploration of different approaches. I have widened my reading list, and included much more about philosophy and thinking, such as de Bono. I am finding this interesting – the big philosophical ideas, and also the same everyday ideas on how to listen better, question more effectively and negotiate. I have also started working with a business coach; someone who knows my style and the environment I work in, and with whom I can talk through situations and challenges to explore different approaches and solutions. This has been invaluable as I started in a new role, where I needed to learn the business culture and organisational challenges. Working out when to bend your natural style to a new environment, and when to stand tall is an interesting challenge and can be tough when
eadership NZ has with some relief shown me that there are some amazing people out there ready to face some truly inspirational challenges. Michael Jackson may swoon “you are not alone”, but recognising it in reality is a whole other ordeal. As I think about it now, I am beginning to comprehend how the experience at Leadership NZ has helped me be more aware of myself, the world around me and how I can be responsible to both. What I would like to share and what I am most proud of is not so much the actual events of the past 12 months but a recent observation my colleague has made about me. She says she has seen me over the past year learn to clarify my goals such that I am able to discern what is achievable and most effective, to not deflate my ideas but also not be driven by them. She has seen me grow in confidence such that I can make considered suggestions, seek advice where I WINTER 2006
there is an audience watching to see how you handle yourself. In this situation having an external person I trust to bounce ideas off and talk through challenges in a neutral way has been very useful. This personal exploration has emphasised for me the importance of a fit between learning style and the leadership education I seek out. Leadership NZ offers a journey, not a ‘paint by numbers’ or passive whiteboard experience. No two leaders are exactly the same, and Leadership NZ does not seek to create a leadership model with lists of values. Instead the programme encourages individual expressions of leadership. In order to get the best out of the programme, it is absolutely necessary that there is a fit between participants’ styles and expectations and the concept of a learning journey. This does not mean all participants need to have the same style or exactly the same expectations of what they get out of the programme. What it does mean is that there needs to be a fit with a style of learning based on exploration, a willingness to participate, to go on a personal journey and to share that journey with others. That enriches the experience for individuals and the overall programme. The total value of the programme is more than the sum of the parts… the reading, the speakers, the discussion, and even more important the contribution of each of the participants. This works because leadership is a very personal experience and commitment. Leadership NZ allows that personal experience and commitment to grow. – Vicky Taylor
am short and sow seeds so others may grow. For me it has been a significant shift. I can now accept a different way of solving problems and when the going gets really tough, I know I have prevailed over it when no one spotted a ‘bridezilla’ at my wedding. With pride I wore the white meringue my mother bought without asking me and smiled with equanimity when my husband forgot to bring a significant portion of the venue decorations. No one noticed so should I be worried? Leadership NZ didn’t prescribe a programme to teach me to think, negotiate, question or analyse, but I learnt all these things. I learnt to find a balanced approach. I may not know where I am heading with my career and am probably a bit fuddled about what I have done so far but I have found a resolve and a community to help me keep at it. I must be doing something right otherwise my colleague would not have told me so. – Gia Nghi Phung 21
Manying Ip My Chosen Land
anying Ip was born in Guizhou, a remote interior province of China, where her parents took refuge after the Japanese invasion of Hong Kong in 1941. She was still young when her family returned to their Hong Kong family home. There she received a classical Chinese education at home, and an English education at school. She graduated with a BA Hons degree in history from the University of Hong Kong. In 1974 she immigrated to New Zealand where she completed postgraduate studies and gained an MA (First Class Honours) in Chinese literature and a PhD in history from the University of Auckland. Now she teaches in the university’s School of Asian Studies. She is Associate Professor in Chinese, and Associate Dean of Postgraduate Studies of the Faculty of Arts. Manying Ip is a social historian and long time researcher on Chinese New Zealanders and on more recent immigrants from Asia. In recent years she has been a highly respected leader and advocate for the Chinese communities. She was awarded the Suffrage Centennial Medal in 1993 and an ONZM (Officer of New Zealand Order of Merit) in 1996. Visible immigrants always face barriers that others don’t, but has it been worse for Asians in New Zealand than in other countries? I don’t have a scientific or statistical comparison with Australia or, say, Canada and other immigrants nations so I think it would be unfair to New Zealand to say that visible immigrants fare worse here. But New Zealand has been more homogeneous than other countries, such as Australia. Up until 1986 our immigrants and descendants were predominantly from the British Isles, whereas in Australia, there are more people proportionately from Italy and Greece and so on. Consequently, New Zealanders in general are less used to people who are different. Even now it’s not compulsory to learn another language, so the barriers for visible immigrants are that much higher. We don’t see the value of another culture. In your writing you’ve listed the five phases of Asian immigration, with the most recent being in the 1990s when there was criticism of Asians for their driving and envy over their wealth. When will we see the next phase and will we get it right next time? We’re in the middle of it now. The phase is not all that clear and we’re not going to change it because we’re no different from any other country in the Pacific basin. We are competing for skilled migrants, people with education and business know-how and people who are younger who can pay for our superannuation later on. And it just happens that Asia has plenty of them. It’s not that we love them or don’t love them, but now immigration policy must be colour blind. We’re in the middle of a trend and while we change our 22
policy a little bit from time to time, we haven’t really deviated from what was introduced in 1987. Did the anti-Asian sentiment and political comment in the 1990s really damage New Zealand’s reputation as a destination for those skilled workers or does our clean-green image mean that it’s still a great place to head to? I think it did some damage. In the short term, comments from people like Mr [Winston] Peters – not that he’d make them again as Foreign Minister – might make people ask: ‘should we go to Australia?’ In the long term, there are only a few places in the world that are not cluttered and offer opportunities for a good lifestyle. So those factors will affect the Asian migrant because they’re no different to other people who want economic stability and a good family life. They will continue to come. Making them stay may be the problem – just as it’s the same issue in making Kiwis stay when there are better wages offered overseas. So how do you see the change in Winston Peters’ position as Foreign Minister playing out in terms of Asian immigration? It brings us all down to earth and shows New Zealand is not a total paradise after all. But nor is it the worst place in the world. A fair number of Asians are well heeled and they can compare what has happened here with ethnic tensions in the US, Britain and Europe. They have quite a balanced view of it all and while we’ll object strongly when people come out and say things like ‘Asians rape the coastlines’, there’s an ability to put it in a worldwide context too. But isn’t that the dilemma – how to find the middle ground between ‘when in Rome’ and this ideal of a melting pot? In my more optimistic moments I would say that this is the teething problem of a multicultural nation and one day, when we grow up, things will be better. Along with education we have the ability to put social contact theory into action. The more contact you have with peowww.leadershipnz.co.nz
ple who are different from you, the less you dislike them and stereotype them. We’re small enough to be able to do that. Any population will have its proportion of racists, bigots or liberals. The advantage here is that, if we can spread the word and get people to understand before those negative minorities grow, we can succeed. New Zealand is also fortunate not to have had the ethnic strife experienced in other countries. Bad things happened to the Chinese here, but if we compare them to what happened in other countries, including Asia, we get a sense of proportion. So I am hopeful. If leadership can play a part in creating a better society anywhere it would be here. You came here over 30 years ago with your husband and began a life as a New Zealander. When did you realise that you’d become a leader and an advocate for Asian issues? It happened by chance. Believe it or not, I was a very shy person! It was because I did my research on the history of early Chinese in New Zealand. When we arrived we lived in Mangere and there were quite a lot of Chinese market gardeners. I became interested in them and did my research on the first generation of Chinese women who moved here, because they were still alive then. The gold miners’ wives were much younger than they were, so I interviewed them. It was so different from anything I knew – especially since I was brought up in Hong Kong, which was a very cosmopolitan city. Then in the ’80s there was a new wave of immigration and I published my book in 1990 and people started ringing me up – from government departments and newspapers, to individuals who asked me questions about the Chinese. I think I was the first one to make people aware of the poll tax the government imposed on the Chinese. Do you think, despite the Prime Minister’s apology, that many New Zealanders can believe today that there was a poll tax on Chinese immigrants? I can remember asking my history professors and even the most eminent ones didn’t know much about it. I was very confused at that time because it was legislation passed by the New Zealand parliament and how could people not know? I looked up references to past politicians and there was Richard Seddon, who everyone thought was wonderful, who had said all these horrible things about the Chinese. I couldn’t understand why New Zealanders, who are so egalitarian and well meaning, with politicians who were good and efficient and introduced social benefits such as the pension, could be so anti-Chinese. So when did you move from being an historian to become an advocate? It was a necessity really. In the early ’90s we had a large number of students arriving from Hong Kong and Taiwan and they started taking my Chinese New Zealanders paper. I remember when Pat Booth’s anti-Asian article was published in 1993 in all the suburban papers. The students were very upset, so when the newspapers rang me up and asked me what I thought of it I told them. Then all these Chinese associations and groups came along and said ‘now you can talk for us, come on, go and tell them this and that’. At that time there were no self-help groups, there were several Asians who were new to the country so they WINTER 2006
didn’t have the language skills or know that they could go to the Race Relations Conciliator to complain. So I had to take them. So it just happened. I knew very clearly the history of it and I also knew the contemporary situation. As a social historian I was able to tell people that New Zealand wasn’t overrun by Asians. I told Metro [magazine] in 1995 not to call me the spokesperson for all Chinese because there were so many different groups and while some might be happy for me to speak, some might not be. The title was pretty dubious. But it stuck because I happened to be a vocal person. Looking back now I understand why. I had the language skills and can speak both Mandarin and Cantonese fluently – and I knew the ropes here. There are a lot more people with those skills now, so I’m happy! How do Asians get a look-in when we still have two groups arguing over the Treaty? The time will come when all the ethnic groups will be involved in a discussion of what the Treaty means for New Zealand. Strictly speaking, the Treaty is between Maori and the Crown, not Maori and Pakeha. The Crown represents all ethnic groups. I’ve been told by many Maori people that we need to sort out this bicultural issue before we can sort out the multicultural issue, but in real life the multicultural issues are right on the doorstep and you can’t just say ‘hang-on and wait’. Returning to the Prime Minister’s apology on the poll tax – was that a watershed in terms of feeling you had really achieved something? I don’t think it’s an exaggeration to say that for local-born Chinese, it’s the most significant achievement so far. It was a very moving occasion and people still talk about it now in those terms. It’s not so important to the new arrivals because there’s quite a gap between the two groups. Does that gap create problems? It’s a bit like a fifth-generation New Zealander and a pom fresh off the boat. Do you feel any closeness to the person simply because you are of the same ethnic group? For local-born Chinese the new arrivals could be a handicap because people can’t tell you apart. So you can get the localborn Chinese saying they wish they could put a sign on the back of their car saying: ‘I was born here’. Where do you go from here? You’ve won an apology from the government and we’re in the middle of a new trend in immigration. What next for Manying Ip? After last year’s Banana Conference (we’re making a joke about ourselves being yellow on white) there was an note in Metro that made me really happy. They asked ‘Is Tze-Ming Mok the new Manying Ip?’ She’s the one who fronted up to the National Front; she won the Victoria Prize in 2005 with an article called ‘Race you there’. She’s an up and coming young woman, really quite formidable. A friend from the law school showed me the article and said: ‘does it make you feel old?’ It didn’t. I’m really happy. There are young articulate people like Tze-Ming now. If anything happens they will speak out, they have their blog sites and they’ll front up. The Asian community in New Zealand is going in the right direction. We don’t feel so much like a guest any more. This is our chosen land. 23
Leadership – A Tango of Emotions
f leadership is a dance, then it must be the tango. The Tango is a dance of energy, emotion, discipline, euphoria, extravagant style, and, above all, passion. And leadership, like the tango, is fundamentally an emotional exercise and a truly unique human experience. The skills of leadership have much more to do with self-understanding and understanding the role of emotions than anything that can be learned at a business school. All organisations are human enterprises. Outstanding leaders don’t just know this, they feel it, and invest considerable time in managing their own emotional state and that of their organisations. Leaders at their best are true to themselves, have integrity in all aspects of their lives, and treat people and enterprises with decency and dignity.
I should say that I am not proclaiming myself as an expert, nor do I stake any great claims as a leader. However, I have experienced my share of good and bad leaders, and have probably committed more than my share of mistakes and received some hard knocks in my leadership journey. Contrary to popular belief, leaders don’t forsake their membership of the human race. We are all just people, neither better nor worse, more worthy or less, and definitely not perfect. We breathe, eat, experience pain, anger, love, and happiness. My friend Peter Cammock, of the University of Canterbury, has been undertaking some special research on leadership for several decades. He believes the issue of self-truth to be fundamental to a leader’s success in all aspects of his life. Peter’s thesis, drawing on the works of mythology guru, 24
Joseph Campbell, is that people need to find and follow their calling, and that is all about finding your passion in life. Some people are lucky to find it at the start; many of us have some false starts. If we believe our calling is to be a leader – then the question we need to ask ourselves is ‘why should anyone be led by me?’ We need to understand how our children, partner, friends and colleagues would describe us. We must take the time to understand ourselves – for to know yourself is to know the organisation you lead. In my opinion, we lose, not gain, freedoms as leaders. We erode our leadership mandate if we are not true to ourselves, or what we stand for, and if we fail to maintain integrity of behaviour. Once we accept the role of leading people, whether it is a team of five, or a corporation of 55,000, we are on the job every minute of every day. If we live inconsistencies, they will bring us down. If we live a lie in one part of our life, then that lie will kill us, or our spirit. Integrity is at the heart of leadership. If we promote ourselves as this type of leader, then we undermine our credibility when we breach this value. There is a limit to how far leaders can defend inappropriate behaviour with the mantra ‘but I’m only human’. Leaders must seek honest feedback, seek contrary views and robust debate about decisions and actions, and keep processes open and transparent, no matter how hard it is. Leaders need to really listen, and face reality – not a preferred fantasy. Leaders need honest and upfront people in their teams to challenge them. And when challenged, leaders must learn how to hear the message and appreciate that it may not be criticism but a different opinion. Leaders need to hear diversity of opinion – diversity is the lifeblood of organisations – just as it is of life. I once received very good advice from a trusted friend. I walked into his office at Christmas time, and it was filled with hundreds of Christmas cards, flowers and gifts. I flippantly remarked that he must feel good about it. He stared at me for a long time and strongly advised me, as a business leader, never to make the mistake of confusing the man with the office. It was advice that has served me well. I will leave you with a challenge: Leadership derives from the most basic and simple aspects of human life – emotions, so in taking the dance floor, think about the emotion of the dance, show kindness and compassion, avoid lies and, yes follow the steps as you should, for otherwise it’s not a tango. But for all your worth make your tango something of beauty and passion – good luck in your dance of leadership – at its best, it’s a wonderful experience. An abridged summary of TelstraClear Chief Executive Allan Freeth’s address to Leadership New Zealand.
FUNDING PARTNERS’ MESSAGEs
A Big Bold Vision
eter Kerridge’s decision to become involved with the Leadership New Zealand programme was “a heart decision… driven by an absolute conviction that the organisation is set up to do something quite remarkable and vital”. Peter started Kerridge & Partners Executive Search in 2005 and the firm has been successfully undertaking CEO/GM level search in the energy, telecommunications, dairy, manufacturing, infrastructure, research, and science sectors. The business has rapidly grown to a team of five and services clients throughout New Zealand. Peter’s approach to search is based on the belief that great leadership makes a difference, and Kerridge & Partners sets out to find leaders who inspire not only those within an organisation, but also within their field and the larger business community. “People coming together from diverse areas creates a richness, a massive synergy and flow of learning,” he says, and this is an underlying reason for the success of Kerridge & Partners. It is also one of the things that attracted him to Leadership New Zealand. “People from different areas of business and the community can add so much value to the search process; some of the best appointments we have made have been across different sectors, and both the successful candidate and the organisations benefit. Leadership New Zealand embraces that vision… makes it tangible. There is such a sense of the value of sharing and learning, of creating something that is greater than the sum of its parts.” Peter began his work with Leadership New Zealand by helping with the screening process of the original applicants to the pro-
gramme; but last year he decided he wanted to be more involved and he is now on the Board of Trustees. “It is filling such an obvious gap; it is providing us with an opportunity to promote challenging conversations about leadership, to evaluate what it is that makes New Zealand leadership unique.” Taking the next step and becoming a supporting partner was a natural progression. Peter is well placed to be part of those conversations; he has a strong executive search and leadership background, he has been an evaluator for the National Business Excellence Awards, a guest lecturer to MBA classes and a conference speaker on how organisations achieve excellence. He is also a longtime member of the Institute of Directors and, in addition to his work on the board of Leadership New Zealand, is also a Director of Business Excellence Architects, itself a leader in its space. But the time he spent working in the not-for-profit sector has had the greatest impact on his leadership ideals. In his 20s Peter worked in remote Patagonia building a water pipeline, he ran a charity in the United Kingdom with 60 volunteers taking care of disabled and disadvantaged people, and he worked in West and East Africa. “I think I learnt more from doing that than from any of the management training I have undertaken over the years. I feel truly privileged to have learnt to see corporate challenges with added perspective. When you see people who have absolutely nothing, you have to stand in awe of the potential that is everywhere around us.” The values of Leadership New Zealand are at the core of Peter’s business practice and the opportunity that it offers is one that is close to his heart: “It’s a big bold vision,” he says, “a journey, and a real chance to contribute back to the community.”
Keeping a Leader’s Profile
t is just possible there isn’t any more critical issue facing today’s world than the lack of and need for inspired and visionary leadership. But how to discover, cultivate and promote genuine leadership at every level in our society is the challenge. Profile Publishing is committed to the search for leaders, to encouraging discussion and debate about what constitutes leadership and to communicating its findings. Leadership, says Profile’s Managing Director Reg Birchfield, is central to the success of everything we do in society, and particularly in our organisational and work life. And promoting an understanding of what constitutes genuine leadership is pivotal to our portfolio of specialist business-to-business magazines. Profile publishes Management, Marketing Magazine, Onfilm, AdMedia, New Zealand Dairy Exporter and Grill magazines. “Consequently we actively support and work with Leadership New Zealand to get its leadership messages across to the community at large and build our reservoir of leadership talent,” says Birchfield. “New Zealand, like every other economy and society in our increasingly put upon world, needs individuals who are aware of the issues, willing to ask the hard questions, sufficiently inWINTER 2006
spired to seek the answers and motivated to make a difference. It is a human condition that we act only when leaders are competent enough to show the way. The job of a media organisation like ours is to tell the story of leaders, their leadership exploits and the solutions they may have to offer in a compelling and comprehensible way. “It is an urgent imperative that New Zealand foster a leadership culture and that we understand what true leadership means. That can only happen if we encourage discussion and debate about all the issues, and particularly those that illustrate the seriousness of things or offer profound solutions and hope. Profile is a media company that is committed to contributing to the leadership discussion, to identifying individuals who have something relevant to say and to finding role models from whom we can learn something about the value and role of leadership. “The concern we have is that New Zealand is struggling to find, develop and keep its leaders. We are, for a variety of reasons either losing them offshore or discouraging them from raising a hand and taking part in the leadership process. Either way, we should look within to identify what it is that robs us of the richness of a leadership heritage. We want to help in the search,” says Birchfield. 25
FRIENDS OF LEADERSHIP New zealand
ew Zealand Post is a people business, more than 17,000 of us, throughout this country and in Australia providing the networks needed by New Zealanders to get things delivered, facilitate banking and payments and manage customer communications. The role of “leader” is the pivot around which New Zealand Post operates. We need to empower our leaders to ensure we have, and continue to build, a high performance, customer driven workplace culture that respects, values and John Allen, CEO NZ Post. engages all of the people of Post. The Leadership New Zealand programme is closely aligned with New Zealand Post’s own ambitions for its leaders. As a key part of the New Zealand community, New Zealand Post’s leaders have a significant role to play in better understanding the environment within which we operate, and reflecting that in the decisions we are making and actions we are taking each day. Being owned by the people of New Zealand is a huge competi-
t’s daunting writing an article on leadership when you know it’s going to be considered (and dissected) by experts in the field and when you lead in a relatively “unconsidered” way. By that I mean that I don’t spend a lot of time thinking about how I lead (that’s not to say I shouldn’t!) and nor do I think I’m a great leader. Having said that, Saatchi & Saatchi New Zealand has recently been named the best agency in NZ by a number of reputable publications, so there seem to be people keen to learn the “secrets”. Andrew Stone, CEO, Well, no secrets, but here goes my Saatchi & Saatchi NZ. 9 tips… 1. See life, your job and leadership as an “adventure” Don’t take it too seriously; be prepared to make mistakes, to learn new things, to take lots of “time out”. Realise that the dice ain’t always going to roll your way, but life is a percentage game. 2. Get the best fellow “adventurers” on board We have the most amazing “leadership” team. We have people in that team who have run their own agencies, creative departments, planning departments, etc, but they have chosen to come on the adventure. These folks are the most amazing people who are all great leaders in their own rights. 3. Buy yourself “space” I sometimes think we are like key people in a time centuries ago when we had roles on account of the King or Queen anointing us. It occurs to me that making sure the King or Queen is happy is pretty fundamentally important so you don’t get your head chopped off! Make sure you get on with them, get a strong sense of how happy they really are, under promise and over-deliver, say thanks, and recognise that they probably have a much less enjoyable role 26
tive advantage, but it also creates some responsibilities. It is, I think critically important for leaders to live the organisations’ values. This cannot be lip service. You have to believe – and act accordingly! One of our foundation values at New Zealand Post is a commitment to the future and success of New Zealand. It is this that gets me out of bed each day. The same is true of other Post leaders. We know that our networks and services – whether in Kiwibank, Courier Post, Datamail or the retail, postie and letter processing networks – have the capability to help New Zealanders succeed. Getting people to work together – productively and creatively – and to understand the role they play for the customer in the service New Zealand Post provides is of critical importance to our success, and indeed an ongoing challenge. Leaders must have patience, focus, confidence and drive. I also know that we need diversity of opinion and views amongst our leaders – and people – to achieve our goals. Our leaders are singularly important in the New Zealand Post family. We need to ensure we have the foundations of effective leadership right across the business, and the support and tools to ensure we can nurture and continue to develop those leaders well into the future.
than yours (yes, the air is thinner as you go higher). 4. See “leadership” as something everyone does, all the time I love people all across the agency making calls, directing meetings, helping others, coaching others, making the place better, meeting a potential new employee or client at a BBQ and leaving them with a great impression. Naturally, I’ve little tolerance for people who do the opposite. 5. Eliminate bad attitudes In yourself (hard to recognise at times) and in others. I can’t stand negative people. They stop us “flying high”. If someone has a bad attitude I spend a very short time trying to understand if we are doing something to cause it. If we are, we change it if we think we should. If we don’t think we should, we encourage those people to go and ruin someone else’s culture. 6. Have great “close support” Three people enable me to do what I do: Nicki, my wife, who understands and is a part of the hurly burly of our industry and is a great sounding board; Mike O’Sullivan who is our Executive Creative Director and is my absolute equal. I trust everything he says and will do anything he asks me to; Louise, my “Assistant” who ran my life at my previous role and joined me on the Saatchi adventure. Without Nicki, Mike and Louise, I wouldn’t even try and do my job. 7. Have fun, and laugh a lot As much as you can, when you’re winning, when you’re under pressure, when you’re celebrating, when you’ve been injured, when you’re in a meeting, with your kids, your partner ... Be happy, lots of the time. 8. Realise you’re only here for a “moment” We’re not here forever. We are usually custodians of a company (or project or brand) for maybe only 3-5 years... that meeting won’t happen again... you may only meet that person once... be in the moment and make the most of it. 9. Dream a lot Have big dreams. For your company, your role, your life, that project, your team, that presentation, your kids. Find ways to define them and vividly bring them to life. www.leadershipnz.co.nz
SUPPORTERS OF Leadership new Zealand
Leadership Scholarship Programme
he Community Trust of Southland, a $200 million community-based philanthropist centred in Southland, has approved an annual Leadership Scholarship of up to $10,000 per annum. This scholarship will be able to be accessed by Southlandbased candidates who successfully meet the Leadership New Zealand criteria for acceptance onto their programme. The scholarship funding is aimed at offsetting some of the course costs for Southland participants. The Trust’s CEO John Prendergast said he was very pleased that the Trust had entered into the scholarship programme in partnership with Leadership New Zealand. “With most of Leadership New Zealand’s programme based in Auckland it is often difficult for Southland domiciled participants to access. We believe the Leadership New
Zealand course to be a very valuable one in helping build New Zealand leaders, and it is our hope and expectation that the advent of the Community Trust of Southland Leadership Scholarship Programme will make it possible for Southlanders to participate in this programme.” The Leadership Scholarship programme is the latest addition to the Community Trust of Southland’s stable of scholarship programmes which consists of Tertiary Education Scholarships ($215,000 per annum), Excellence in the Arts Scholarships ($50,000 per annum), Sport Scholarships ($60,000 per annum) and targeted Health Scholarships ($90,000 per annum). “Investing in human capital via these scholarship programmes is one of the most effective ways that the Community Trust of Southland can achieve its objective of “making a difference” for Southlanders”, Mr Prendergast said.
Listen, Think then Act! Do you have the ability to listen? Would you like to be challenged to think and make decisions in effective new ways?
non-profit organisations to gain valuable expertise and knowledge; and for partnering organsations to enhance their links with the communities in which they operate or do business. The Leadership Forum – an inclusive forum where leaders from all sectors of our community will come together to debate and discuss leadership issues of importance to the future of New Zealand. Leadership New Zealand recognises the critical importance of developing cross-sector connections that span business, government
Leadership New Zealand takes leadership learning beyond theory
and community. We welcome partnerships with organisations that share our values and vision to build a culture of leadership in New Zealand.
and across sectors – building vital dialogue with other leaders
The benefits of partnering with and contributing to the success of
from different backgrounds and
Leadership New Zealand are:
viewpoints. Leadership New Zealand
• The opportunity to be part of the Leadership New Zealand Forum.
facilitates this dialogue through:
• The opportunity to provide leaders, board members or associates as programme speakers.
The Leadership Programme – a year-long programme for mid-career leaders including presentations from, and discussions with guest speakers, debates, full day seminars and retreats. The events
• Involvement in Leadership New Zealand functions and events. • Recognition through Leadership New Zealand’s website, information kits, events, yearbook and Fellow’s Directory. • The opportunity to nominate a participant for a Leadership New Zealand programme.
take place throughout New Zealand to ensure the diversity of perspective that is important to building a real understanding of key leadership issues. After graduation, participants become Fellows of Leadership New Zealand.
Leadership New Zealand will be actively calling for nominations for participants for the 2007 intake of the Leadership Programme in July 2006, but if you are interested in participating in The Leadership Programme or The Leadership Forum, or would like further information
SkillsBank – a means for those who have completed the Leadership
on becoming a funding partner of Leadership New Zealand, please
Programme to receive ongoing personal and leadership development; for
contact Lesley Slade on 09 309 3749 or visit www.leadership.co.nz
Leadership p New Zealand Programme of Activities – 2006 Event One
10-12 February 2006
21-23 July 2006
Location: Focus: Topics: Speakers:
Formosa Country Lodge, Beachlands, Auckland Exploring Leadership The different faces of leadership, Charac teristics of leadership, Leadership and the community Pat Snedden, Bob Harvey, Jenny Gill and Tony Nowell
Location: Focus: Topics:
Marae Our People II Realities of the melting pot, Cross-cultural or bi-cultural NZ?, Law and order, Educating our children, Health
9-10 March 2006
Location: Focus: Topics: Speakers:
9 March: St Colomba Centre, Ponsonby, Auckland 10 March: Butterfly Creek, Manukau, Auckland Our People I Age, Ethnicity – Changing Populations, Immigration, Children, Sports, Religion Simativa Perese, Manying Ip, Joris de Bres, Jo Brosnahan, Judy McGregor, Diana Crossan, Murray Campbell
Event SEVEN 18 August 2006 Location: Focus: Topics:
Auckland The Media Our national identity, Is the media’s role to shape or report on public opinion? Cultural issues and the media, How does the media support meaningful debate
Event EIGHT 14-15 September 2006 Location: Focus: Topics:
Wellington Our Future I What is our place in the world, Develop- ing our national identity, Future export markets, Tourism, The arts
Event Three 6-7 April 2006
12-13 October 2006
Location: Focus: Topics: Speakers:
Rose Gardens, Parnell, Auckland What is a Civil Society Civil society, Human rights, Elements of a civil society, Poverty, Employment, Citizenship, Employment, Trade unions Campbell Roberts, Charmaine Pountney, John Hinchcliff, Ross Wilson, Diane Robertson
Location: Focus: Topics:
Wellington Our Future II Information age, Kiwi innovation, Science and technology, Energy production and consumption, Natural resources, Sustainability, Community and business partnerships
17-19 November 2006
18-19 May 2006
Location: Focus: Topics: Speakers:
ACC, Wellington The Role of the State and 21st Century Issues of Governance Changing role of the state, Global trends of governments, Participation in decision making, The role of the citizen Mai Chen, Margaret Wilson, Maarten Wevers, Mark Prebble, Brian Easton, Debbie Chin
Location: Focus: Topics:
Auckland New Zealand on the World Stage What is our place in the world, NZ leaders in the Asia Pacific region, Economics, Relationships, Selling NZ to the world, Defence
15-16 June 2006
Location: Focus: Topics: Speakers:
Villa Maria, Auckland Rural and Urban New Zealand The shape of rural NZ in the future, Future export markets, Rural/Urban partnerships, Primary to tertiary production, Diversification Morgan Williams, Tom Mandeno, Larry Ferguson, Philip Gregan, Warren Moran, John Bluck, Jim Van der Poel
Event ELEVEN 18 November 2006 Location: Focus:
chief executive’s message
Make More Partners By Lesley Slade
hen he addressed the February 2006 Global Business Forum in New Zealand, Bill Clinton spoke of the challenge of achieving global harmony. “These are real high class problems,” he said. And his advice for approaching those high class problems: “Make more partners, remembering that poverty and denial breed rage; build institutions of cooperation; keep your country better within its borders, with a sound justice system and so on, so it can knit together with the rest of the world. There’s a new world struggling to be born, don’t get caught up in the latest firestorm.” At the same time that Bill Clinton was addressing the Business Forum, the 2006 Leadership New Zealand leadership programme began its year with 28 participants representing a diverse range of sector, geographic and ethnic backgrounds. Their challenge for the year is to examine, explore and seek to understand ways in which they can contribute to building a better New Zealand through improved personal and collective leadership. They face this challenge in partnership with one another and through building relationships with one another so that they may understand each other’s perspectives, appreciate different insights and grow from the challenging conversations and discussions they have with leaders from throughout New Zealand who guide them in their journey.
The strongest behaviour of all is a willingness to hear and understand a view that differs from our own, and to be prepared to accept another way of thinking and doing.
– where the real strength lies. But anyone who has maintained any relationship at all knows that there is nothing easy about relationships. It is much easier to impose our will and opinion on others, than to engage genuinely so that the outcome reflects not only the dominant and most powerful voice, but the values, ideas and views of all. The strongest behaviour of all is a willingness to hear and understand a view that differs from our own, and to be prepared to accept another way of thinking and doing. In March, Auckland Barrister Simativa Perese spoke to the programme participants about who we are as a people and how, together, we can build a society where we each have the opportunity to thrive. He ended his session with the challenge – how can we be more inclusive? At the same March session Professor Manying Ip told the group that New Zealand is small enough to achieve success as an inclusive nation – we have a chance to get it right where bigger nations will struggle because of the complexity of their size. The inclusive society is at the heart of the new world struggling to be born. And it requires of us very different behaviours and actions. It requires suspension of judgement as we seek greater understanding, openness and an absence of fear of the unknown, and genuine curiosity about and interest in others. It requires real connection and trust – that fragile ingredient that characterises enduring relationships. There is nothing soft about this challenge. We have allowed social debate to be based on a lack of real information and the perpetuation of myths. If we are to build a new world that pays attention to all of the complex issues we must demand robust enquiry, connection and engagement so that together, we can grow a bigger world view. That is leadership. Lesley Slade is Chief Executive of Leadership New Zealand.
These leaders who give their time to speak to the participants are each highly talented people who achieve significant success. They have a well developed sense of self, they understand their strengths and weaknesses and they have a strong vision for the future while understanding the past. They are lifelong learners who strive for greater understanding. They are also builders of people and place who are fuelled by passion and caring and who are resilient, courageous and prepared to take risks. However the most notable thread that weaves its way throughout these leaders’ stories is their emphasis on the need for partnership and cooperation. Irrespective of their areas of expertise, all of the leaders who address the leadership programme describe and demonstrate the need for relationships. Not the transactional and superficial version, but real, deep connections and engagement. Traditional literature on management and leadership practice and style has labelled the people side of the role as ‘soft’ while other components of the role are ‘hard’. The inference being that soft is easy, and hard is the true measure of success
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