Fletcher Building, the biggest construction firm in New Zealand is training young employees in Māori and Pacific Island values.
Sixteen employees graduated from the company’s learning and development programme at Mataatua Marae in Tāmaki Makaurau today.
21-year-old graduate Nicole Duncan was introduced to her Māori culture through the programme.
“I think that’s what’s really cool about this programme- you learn about your cultural identity and that’s something personal for me as well. I didn’t know a lot about my Māori background. I do have Māori grandparents that I haven’t met before and it really makes you look into your cultural background,” she says.
The course is also designed to introduce school leavers and those without jobs to life skills in budgeting, time management and setting work goals.
“We learn about our finances and how to take care of that, we learn people-skills, so it’s been really great.”
The learning and development course is based on evidence that feeling part of a community and its values sets young people up for success in their careers.
“Between this wānanga and our last I was offered a job in HR in safety management at PlaceMakers so that was a success coming from the programme and they’ve just helped me figure out what I want and how I get there,” says Duncan.
Nicole Duncan says her next goal is personal.
“For me that is looking after our environment our planet and our animals, I’m going to be volunteering for Greenpeace.”
While the course is designed to support young employees of all ethnicities, it is the only corporate development programme founded in Māori and Pacific values.