Succession planning for future Māori leaders a must

A six-day programme at Victoria Business School aims to help emerging leaders achieve their aspirations of being in Māori governance roles.

Attendees and presenters of Hei Rata Whakaruruhau pose for a photo inside Te Herenga Waka Marae
Attendees and presenters of Hei Rātā Whakaruruhau attend the pohiri at Te Herenga Waka Marae.

The Hei Rātā Whakaruruhau programme, which launched on August 30, involves 22 emerging Māori leaders between 18-35 years of age and is provided in partnership with Te Pūtea Whakatupu Trust and the Federation of Māori Authorities.

Participants will learn leadership tools drawn from a range of Māori, non-Māori and global sources, and examine how leadership themes link back to their own tribal, Māori land trust or company workplace strategy and culture.

Karleen Everitt, general manager for Te Pūtea Whakatupu Trust, says the Trust is proud to support the pilot programme and aspires to see a future filled with qualified, passionate, competent, and culturally strong individuals.

"Our Trust is investing in determining what is the best mix of academic and practitioner training to staircase our future generations into these key roles of responsibility."

Karleen says she sees huge value in the relationship being forged between the Trust, the Federation of Māori Authorities and the University.

Dr Riri Ellis, the Hei Rātā Whakaruruhau programme convener at Victoria Business School, says it is exciting to have an opportunity to offer short course opportunities to future Māori leaders.

"The reality is that people are so busy—they have work commitments, community commitments and educational aspirations that often get in the way. Focusing just on one area of expertise is not always easy. This programme gives them time to absorb all the fruits of learning from some very experienced leaders."

The six-day programme includes talks from professional director and advisor Traci Houpapa, who is also a member of the Victoria University Council, and Hone McGregor of the Federation of Māori Authorities.

Professor Rawinia Higgins, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Māori) at Victoria University of Wellington says: "The University has recently invested in iwi partnerships throughout the country, and this programme is a positive extension aligned to meeting their varied needs".

A pohiri was held yesterday afternoon at Victoria University of Wellington’s Te Herenga Waka Marae, before a talk from executive director Peter Douglas.