Manawa Kāi Tahu

Today success for Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu has an ever increasing number and range of measures. There are multiple bottom lines these days that span culture, environment, social and economic outcomes for whānau, hapū and iwi.

Ngāi Tahu values such as tikanga, kaitiakitanga, rangatiratanga and whanaungatanga, make up the framework for how we should conduct ourselves, our business and our decision making processes.

“It has never been acceptable to look at the financial results and say we’ve done a good job,” says the CEO of Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu Arihia Bennett. “But we are entering a new chapter in our journey as an organisation, one that will make us more accountable to what is important to whānau.”

A new project, Manawa Kāi Tahu, is underway across the Office of Te Rūnanga and Ngāi Tahu Holdings and its five subsidiary companies, Property, Seafood, Tourism, Farming and Capital to identify, measure and where necessary, change the way we operate our businesses.

Ngāi Tahu Holdings Chief Executive Mike Sang says, “for us it’s not just about what we achieve, but how we do it. It’s important we go about our work in line with our values. Manawa Kāi Tahu will be a positive step to ensure our efforts keep improving in this area. There has been on-going debate about how well our businesses and programmes are doing and what we might do to improve accountability. Manawa Kāi Tahu will help us to capture and understand our journey to date,” he says.

Arihia Bennett says Manawa Kāi Tahu is more than a project to produce an annual sustainability report, it’s about developing and instituting a process of continuous improvement. “Together we will be measuring our results and activities in terms of cultural, environmental, social and economic outcomes. So it isn’t just about dollars or the environment, it is about ensuring we are operating better in all areas in order to meet the aspirations of whānau.”

We have adopted the name Manawa Kāi Tahu because it reflects how creating a sustainable future for whānau, hapū and iwi lies at the heart of what Te Rūnanga Group does, and what we stand for – it’s our beating heart.

There are three rhythms to our beating heart – kia manawa tahi (a united heart), kia manawa ora (a vibrant heart) and kia manawa toa (a determined heart). Together these three attributes will ensure the heart of Ngāi Tahu whānui will endure forever.

We intend to produce a report in October for the year ending June 2016. Arihia says the report will be a first step. “We will be focusing on addressing our key issues through an engagement process involving whānau, Papatipu Rūnanga and key internal and external stakeholders. I can’t imagine we will get it all right in our first attempt, but every year we hope to reflect improvements.

A series of hui are being held throughout the motu and we want to hear what is important to whānau. Your input will help us get a clearer picture of your expectations of Te Rūnanga and all its businesses. Whilst this is an opportunity for us to talk about what we are doing, it is really important for us to get guidance on how we do things in line with our values.

See http://ngaitahu.iwi.nz/ngai-tahu-events/ for more information.