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He Tangata Manawanui – A Generous People came out of a year long experience that we shared on the 2012 Leadership New Zealand programme. As we listened to amazing and inspiring leaders from different sectors, industries and communities (some of whom have contributed in the pages following), we were struck by their generous love for this country and our people. So we often asked these leaders to outline their vision for Aotearoa New Zealand. More often than not they threw the question back on us: “You’re all leaders; what’s your vision?”
This is our attempt at an answer to that question.
The writers and other contributors to this book were asked to contribute their vision for any or all communities, sectors and industries in Aotearoa New Zealand. Not every person on the programme was able to provide a written or pictorial piece, nevertheless this is the collective effort across our whole cohort.
We believe that the leadership we regularly see on display in our media, in our board rooms, and in our businesses in Aotearoa New Zealand is often divisive and cursed by a tunnel vision that serves only a narrow band of people. In many ways, this is the charism of the Leadership New Zealand programme; to challenge young New Zealand leaders by inviting them to engage with difference and diversity so that we can dialogue with respect for each other.
Consequently, what you will see in the following pages is a group of leaders who have found a way to respect each other’s views in the midst of quite rigorous and intense discussion, disagreement, and argument. You will see a variety of visions for communities, sectors and industries in Aotearoa New Zealand. While the visions are quite varied, they have a desire to share passion, excitement, ideas and hope with whoever chooses to read them. They are visions marked by one wonderful shared quality: generosity of spirit.
Welcome. This is not a definitive statement on how to resolve all the woes in our large world. It is a small voice of hope provided generously to those with ears to hear.