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Pakiwaitara Program kicks off: Creative Leadership through Storytelling guided by Tikanga

Updated: Apr 8, 2023

Nearly one month into the Pakiwaitara program and our waka has launched from the shore. We are in the process of learning. The weaving that is slowly happening across the participants is gentle and rich. They 'show up' keen to learn and explore their own seeing.


From the pre-enrolment interviews to now, participants come in clear of the commitment they make to themselves. They commit to valuing their deeper questions towards leading more creatively. Commiting to the key stories that guide them and exploring how tikanga can frame and support them.



In our first couple of sessions we spoke about leadership being more about our own way of seeing more than executing skills. Tikanga show us this.


Tikanga has the capacity to guide us. It helps us to understand where our seeing is coming from. It also tells us when we are working without connection and abandoning ourselves in order to serve anothers lens.


An inquiry we have this term is "how do I learn to value my own context as the driver and then translate that into my leadership practice?". This is the heart of what Pakiwaitara is aiming to do.


Our learning together happens both online and in-person. The talk is real, at times vulnerable and uplifting. Leaders share what they are facing in their work and are set tasks to get them translating straight away. Building this muscle takes time and consistent practice. They are already starting to translate their learning into action. This is thrilling to say the least.


Tikanga is something that can be translated into all action in any setting - when we train ourselves to translate it.


In order to become our own translator, we gently, over time, train ourselves to go beyond just knowing the 'outer' form of tikanga (what it looks like). We move towards what it feels and moves like as a function. We then commit to becoming both a laboratory and our own adventurous alchemist. We engage in its alchemy to support our action to produce the impact that is needed, not just what we want.




Next week we have a full day wānanga to explore their own seeing and the tikanga based framework we use.


Last week, participants laid out with props, their own individual systems in their work settings. A peak into each others worlds and the forces that affect us. The next piece of learning builds on this session. We go in, more specifically, and explores certain parts of their systems. The aim is growing more understanding of the complexities they have to consider to lead well.


They will then practice responding, using the tikanga frames, through role play. Offers of alternate responses that free them up from the old - less helpful ways they habitually practice.


I feel very excited to guide them in this area next week. There is an unfolding quality in the group. This next phase is to just keep tending and grounding that further. Our waka is on its haerenga, may it keep itself steady and connected.



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