INSTEP Principals’ Day Out celebrates Women in Leadership


Priority One’s Instep programme was proud to host Principals’ Day Out – celebrating ‘Women in Leadership’. It was an informative day visiting local businesses and meeting the women who influence their success. The principals gained an insight into the industries and discussed future talent pathways and opportunities. Rapid growth in our population has led to challenges for our business community, with a talent attraction and retention shortage. It’s never been more important for our heads of schools to understand the environment and become a part of the Future of Work solution. Our ability to develop our city comes from being able to see all the possibilities and actively work together for the prosperity of our region and rangatahi.

Jan Tinetti, Priority One’s INSTEP team and the principals

Starting with breakfast and a word from the Hon Jan Tinetti, Minister of Internal Affairs, Minister for Women and Associate Minister of Education. “The Ministry of Education recognises we need to do more, and we are starting to have those conversations. We’d like to see an alternative type of education system that caters for the rangatati who are being failed by the system. One that wraps around the student and is student focused.”

Breakfast was followed by a tour of Grace Hospital where General Manager Janet Keys presented various health care pathways available to students. Such as the partnership with Toi Ohomai Institute of Technology called ‘Bridge into Work’ – giving nursing students a placement during their course. The group then ventured via Uzabus to Enterprise Angels and Chief Executive Nina Le Lievre described her story and examined local capital and network infrastructure. “Enterprise Angels supports programmes like Instep Young Leaders’ and yia! It’s never been more important for local businesses to get involved and invest in the future”.

During lunch at the Bay Oval, Paula Clode, Director of Business Systems for UBCO showcased their 2X2 EV adventure bikes. Principals had a blast and became quite competitive testing out the versatile on/off-road electric bikes that are a great alternative to gas-powered bikes while Paula shared UBCO’s Kaupapa and plan for growth in the EV space.

The day closed after exploring the eco and people friendly facilities at Zespri. The building’s roof collects rainwater and recycles it back through the property to be utilised. All spaces are designed for wellbeing and the comfort of their employees. They are proud to say, ‘people come first’. The group intently listened to the journey of and message from Juliet Ansell, Head of Core and Resilience Innovation, “It is important for companies like Zespri to hire and retain local talent who have a knowledge and understanding of the region. We place emphasis on the person and are confident Zespri is a choice employer, rather than doing exit interviews we want to do, ‘why you stay’ interviews. We know people stay where they are valued and where the work is meaningful. We encourage schools to develop and grow our future talent and instil a love for STEM (Science, Tech, Engineering, Maths) in students.”

Wrapping up the day with some eco-insight at Zespri HQ

And finally, a word from Andrew Liddle, Te Puke High School, “Another great Principals’ Day Out. I really enjoyed the opportunity to visit organisations with great female leadership. I was particularly impressed with the passion demonstrated by our hosts towards their careers and the differences they are making.”