Welcome to On Being Bold

– an online collective developed by women for women.

On Being Bold was created to support women by sharing the personal lives and career journeys of prominent New Zealand business leaders and highlighting how the squiggly line connecting home life and careers is anything but straight-forward.

Never before have we seen these two worlds collide so intensely, and on a mass scale, than during Covid-19. For 75 days New Zealanders navigated new ways of working and the challenges that came with rapidly adapting to unprecedented circumstances in our personal and professional lives, simultaneously.

During the month of February, we explored resilience and tenacity, and these resources are now more relevant than ever. As New Zealand enters its economic recovery and the whole world continues to face unprecedented challenges, we will all be called upon in some way to support that process, and as business leaders we will need to lean into the new challenges – and opportunities – this brings.

This leads us nicely into our next focus area, which is about leading people through change. You can find these new resources, along with some reflections on the Covid-19 experience and what lessons we have taken from it, here.  

We recognise this has been a challenging and unprecedented time, and this can take its toll on our wellbeing. To support our community in navigating these changes we will be opening up all our content free of charge. We hope that by sharing our experiences and supporting each other, we will find it easier to embrace our ‘new normal’.

We have also decided to shift our planned Conference for this year to December 2021. We believe this will give us all some time to adapt and ensure we are providing you with the highest quality experience possible. We will share more details later in the year.

This month’s focus: Leading through change

Kia ora,

Since we last shared with our On Being Bold community the world around us has experienced a seismic shift. We are in the midst of a global pandemic, and as a country we had to change the way we work, learn and connect overnight to stop the spread of Covid-19. Thankfully our collective efforts have been successful, with the move to Alert Level 1 now complete.

This experience brings into sharp focus the importance of leading through change. It would be hard to find any individual, or business, who will not be touched in some way by the experiences of the last few months.

This focus area was actually chosen pre Covid-19 and the videos we will share were all filmed before any of us knew what an Alert Level was! But reflecting on this topic, and the challenge we have ahead of us as a country, we believe it is still very relevant today, if not even more so.

You will also be able to draw on the content from earlier in the year to support you during this time, including our focus on building tenacity and resilience with Joan Withers.

When I think about digital transformation and leading our people through the change this brings with it, I can’t think of a business or community that is not exposed to the change technology is bringing –  whether that’s tourism, agriculture, telecommunications, construction or serving the community.  This rate of change can be confronting, raising questions in ourselves about whether we have the right skills to thrive in this new environment and the right way of working to be successful in this new era.

The good thing to know is you are not alone!  I’d say lean into this change, take the opportunity to try new ways of working and be curious about how digital disruption might impact your business. For me personally Agile has been one of the biggest learning experiences I’ve had, rethinking how I lead and organize our people at Spark to succeed.

In its simplest form digital transformation can be focused around improving customer experience – what problem are we trying to solve for our customer and how does a digital experience help us do this? Or improving our operational efficiency – based on a strong data foundation to remove inefficiencies from the supply chain or logistics. Or how might we improve our workforce management, shifting from paper-based records to software applications that better plan and support the work our people do.  It always comes back to what problem are we trying to solve and how does technology enable us to do that.

While technology is a core element of any change, the biggest enabler in my opinion is our people. Engaging them behind the vision of what you are trying to achieve and creating a culture where new ideas, collaboration and experimentation can flourish are keys to success. Change is hard, so tenacity and resilience which Joan covered in February will always be key ingredients in any transformation.

Over the coming month you’ll have the opportunity to hear from a variety of leaders across a range of industries and roles, sharing their stories on digital transformation, the three key ingredients of leadership, how their leadership style has changed and the biggest leadership challenge they’ve faced in their career.  I hope you enjoy these videos and I look forward to catching up with you for the next instalment when we focus on the three key ingredients of leadership.

Ngā mihi  

Jolie

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Indepth Interviews with the OBB team
Silvana Schenone
Silvana Schenone
Partner, MinterEllisonRuddWatts
Cathy Quinn
Cathy Quinn
Partner, MinterEllisonRuddWatts
Dame Therese Walsh
Dame Therese Walsh (MC)
Chairman, TVNZ
Royal Reed
Royal Reed
Partner, Meredith Connell
Jolie Hodson
Jolie Hodson
CEO, Spark
Frances Valintine
Frances Valintine
Founder, Tech Futures Lab
Dame Paula Rebstock
Dame Paula Rebstock
Professional Director, ACC
Joan Withers
Joan Withers
Chair, Mercury and The Warehouse
Alison Gerry
Alison Gerry - Tenacity and Resilience
Director Infratil