Thursday, March 08, 2007

Claim this place

We've just opened up a new project office in Auckland for the work we are doing - I think this is an incredibly symbolic time for us. Here are some thoughts that I sent to Pawel to show what this means to me

This is a landmark time and place for us.

This is where we start to design the future. If we use the metaphor of the Kiwi Explorer this is our shed, our garage, our kitchen table. This is where we pore over our plans, covering off every uncertainty and trying to find the best way to make our quest happen.

If we were Edmund Hillary this maybe where he kept his bees, thinking about the mountains he might climb before he attempted Mount Everest. If we were Sir Peter Blake, this is the boat building yard where we tested ideas about new boat shapes, sail types and nutrition plans before we set off to San Diego to win the America’s Cup. Closer to home, if we were Kevin Biggar, this is where we would weigh every item we had and decide we really only need half a toothbrush while we were rowing across the Atlantic. Further away, this is the garage in Palo Alto where Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak designed their first apple computer. This is our beginning.

This is a place about ideas and debate – where we are safe and free to challenge each other about whether what we are doing will really deliver on our dreams of running a lean business that will deliver product innovation in the eyes of our customers and a service experience that is unparalleled in the NZ business.

This is a place where we find out about what is inside us – for it is only by unleashing the capability that is inside us that will deliver on this dream.

It is a place where we will stand strong and united – for it is only as a team that we can achieve what we set out to achieve.

And it is a place about hard work – this is place where we do the preparation – the training, the theory, the mini expeditions to prepare us. This hard work is in the pursuit of an audacious dream that perhaps no-one thinks is possible other than us – and those are the best type aren’t they?

We will have our first reward in June when we will have completed our design for this new business. Until then I encourage you to ‘claim this place’ as ours. It is the place where we design our dreams – where we design a business that will be the future of Telecom, the future of its customers, and it will be a defining point in all of our careers. Our first challenge is to make this place tangibly different from what we have come from. I encourage you to do that – make it special. See it as our first test of doing things that are leaner, innovative and customer focussed.