Fri 24 Aug 2018

Making business Agile

Taranaki business leaders have taken advantage of an NZIHT course being run at WITT.

The two-day Agile Management training programme encourages participants to be more responsive to issues.

Cherie Boyd, who is a member of the Taranaki Chief Executives’ forum and jumped at the opportunity to take the course after hearing about it through the Chamber of Commerce, was warm in her praise of it.

Her organisation, Kindergarten Taranaki, is a not-for-profit association for 24 Taranaki kindergartens from Patea to Waitara and around to Oakura and looks after the interests of more than 1000 children.

“It is important we respond quickly to kindergarten parent and caregiver requests,” she said.  

She said it was interesting to sit through the course with people who had responsibilities for a completely different organisation to her own – the oil sector, primary industries and WITT staff.

“It was very stimulating and interesting to see the parallel challenges we faced.
We are not manufacturing – but we are growing children.”

Cherie has experience in change management and says following the principles of Agile would make organisations more responsive to needs while not losing focus on quality.

“If you don’t respond to the market you are obsolete – survival is about reframing yourself.”

The Agile course is one of many short programmes WITT and NZIHT bring to Taranaki.

Agile Management training was held at WITT for WITT Executives, Executive Manager and four external key stakeholders.

NZIHT General Manager Kyle Hall said Agile was discovered to be very different from the traditional style of management. 

“Basically take everything you know of traditional and tip it on its head,” he said. “Let the team lead by having them drive the projects and let the boss stand in behind and facilitate when required.”

He said key messages were to say thank you, move quickly, show respect, forgive mistakes, acknowledge the customer is king, don’t feel obliged to stick to the plan and include people in decisions.

Agile Management teachers say it is vital to delivering on time and in full – and critical that good decisions are made early and changes communicated effectively.  Teams should be capable of making dynamic adjustments while maintaining quality and performance.  Agile works on the basis that “old style” command and control can’t cope with today’s environment. The course explains the agile approach and how it can be applied to the workplace.


Find out more about these courses at