Editorial: Celebrating leadership

Following hard on the heels of this year’s nationwide Leadership Week events and initiatives we’re dedicating this issue of NZ Management to full-on celebration of leadership.
It comes at time of deep transition for both individual leaders and for the discipline of leadership itself which is constantly being challenged to reinvent and re-energise itself. As we have been signalling in this magazine for some time now, much needs to change for today’s leaders to be able to meaningfully address the problems of today and the future. Many of the old models – excessive executive remuneration packages spring to mind – are, rightfully, under attack. Much will continue to change.
But for now we’re celebrating the stuff that people are doing well. And we’re examining new thinking around how leadership can evolve. We’re proud, for instance, to be carrying within this issue of NZ Management the latest edition of Leaders, the flagship publication of Leadership New Zealand. Within its pages, chair Jo Brosnahan examines and celebrates the diversity of thought and perspective that emerges when people from different generations share their ideas and inspirations. As she puts it, it’s about exploring the “opportunities in the space between the generations”.
She writes about creating workplaces flexible enough to accommodate the needs and values of each generation, and the benefits of enabling each individual to contribute in their own way. That, surely, must be great leadership.
We’ve picked up on this theme of intergenerational leadership in our cover story in this issue of NZ Management, asking six Gen X and Gen Y leaders to share their vision for the future. Most importantly, we wanted to know what makes them tick. What do they value and how do they view working with their Baby Boomer colleagues?
As the article notes, integrity, partnership and recognition are key. “Respect and constructive interaction are important. Values rule. When engaged with their work these young leaders will balance flexibility with excellence. They thrive in world that is collaborative, transparent and dynamic.”
Such dynamism is clearly to the fore in parts of our engineering and construction sector which is working hard to shuck off its historic volatility and provide the building blocks for wider economic growth. In her article starting on page 38 of this issue, writer Vicki Jayne talks with Beca’s recently-appointed CEO Greg Lowe about leading development in green branding and how his early career in the New Zealand Navy taught him the power of teamwork and informed his leadership style. To Lowe’s way of thinking, strong and effective leadership revolves around developing and training people well, and empowering them so that when they are in places long way from home, they make good decisions.
For another take on some of our country’s best leaders, turn to page 42 for publisher Toni Myers’ illuminating conversation with Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu kaiwhakahaere (chair) Mark Solomon. Or check out the profiles of the winners of this year’s Sir Peter Blake Leadership Awards on page four. There is much to celebrate.

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