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More World Class Managers

Wednesday 4 June 2008, 5:14PM

By Rt Hon Winston Peters

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Three awards to create “more world class managers” were announced today by Economic Development Minister Pete Hodgson at the launch of a campaign to raise business awareness of the opportunities available to improve their management skills. 

Speaking at the launch of this year’s Management Focus campaign at the new University of Auckland Business School, Pete Hodgson applauded the collaborative approach of the business consortium, and drew parallels with the recent work to develop the New Zealand Skills Strategy Discussion Document.

“By leveraging the talents and resources of tertiary, industry and private sector organisations, the result is a focussed, co-ordinated and joined up effort to help New Zealand firms improve their management capability,” Pete Hodgson said.

“Mastering the demands of a global marketplace is essential to our future economic prosperity. In this we are reliant on strong leadership and effective workplace practices.

“A key strategy is to develop a greater stock of New Zealand managers who are strategic in their thinking and who seek to continuously develop themselves and the people they lead.”

The event was a shared launch of Management Focus with the PLATO Learning Network pilot, where small to medium businesses will receive mentoring and training to help them improve their management systems and gain a better understanding of how to access global markets.

Management Focus Award recipients are:

· The New Zealand Centre for SME Research (part of Massey University) has been awarded $48,600 for research into what can be done to get small business owners more involved in capability building activities.

· Te Arahanga O Nga Iwi, the Kapiti-Horowhenua Maori Economic Development Agency, which has won $49,000 to help Maori business owners identify growth and development opportunities;

· The Canterbury Employers’ Chamber of Commerce which receives $31,000 to pilot a programme to inspire and up-skill Canterbury managers.

The campaign is organised by a consortium of business sector groups, economic development agencies, chambers of commerce and government agencies. The next call for applications to the Management Focus Fund will be in July.