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12th - 15th, October 2020
Virtual / Auckland, NZ

Practical skills, strategies and tools to excel in a changing industry landscape


- Drive innovation and diversity to ensure your teams thrive & succeed
- Build resilience to withstand disruptive environments
- Create an open and adaptable team to thrive in the ambiguity of the operations landscape
- Strategies to successfully navigate change


  • Leanne Mortlock

    Chief Operations Officer

    Provincial Education Group
  • Paula O'Flynn

    Regional Operations Manager

    Ministry of Justice
  • Tracey Hickman

    Executive General Manager, Retail Operations

    Genesis Energy
  • Claire Neville

    Former General Manager, Operations

    NZ Bus
  • Peter Lensink

    Managing Director

    Transdev Auckland
  • Penelope Rae

    Director, Business

  • Louisa Homersham

    Deputy Chief Operating Officer

    Otago Polytechnic
  • Emma Watson

    Chief Operating Officer

    Fronde NZ
  • Tandi McCarthy

    Security Operations Manager

    NZ Transport Agency
  • Nicole Manawatu

    Executive Director, Operations

    New Zealand Carbon Group
  • Leigh Potter

    Chief Operating Officer

  • Elaine Morgan

    Chief Operating Officer and Director

    Green Gorilla
  • Derri Evans

    Agile Coach

    Westpac New Zealand Limited
  • Eva Smaill

    Continuous Improvement Specialist

    Auckland Council
  • Pippa Lawlor

    Professional Development Facilitator

    Mint Education


Fine-tuning your communication skills for inclusive leadership
Empower people to thrive
An exploration of diversity in the workplace
The advantage of emotional intelligence in leadership
Operations - The future is bright
Establish inclusive organisations & build the future
Be your own cheerleader
Then & now - Changes to operations leadership
Transform workplace behaviour
Resilience - More complex than we imagine
Find your niche
Navigate the operations roller-coaster
Have the confidence to step-up into operations
Seize opportunities for change
Learn to thrive through challenges
The happy juggler
Moving forwards as operations leaders
An exploration of authentic & confident leadership
Pre-Summit Workshop

12 Oct


Working in operations means you manage large teams made up of individuals with distinct skill sets. If not handled with care, you can alienate yourself - or other people - in the rush to guarantee efficiency. To establish yourself as an authentic leader, you must be able to articulate your ideas and build trustworthy relationships to ensure your vision is achieved.

This workshop will teach you to slow down, communicate with confidence and clarity, and build lasting relationships without compromising on your KPIs.

Getting to know you

- Introductory session

- Understanding your role and the challenges of the operations industry

- What are the setbacks in your leadership career? 


Building a team that can voice their opinions

- Develop rapport and reliability

- Strategies to improve your communication skills

- Techniques for managing people under stress

Creating strong teams and stakeholder relationships

- Fine-tune your networking skills 

- Prioritise business relationships

- Mould your communication style depending on your audience

Leading with approachability and openness

- Foster strong positive working relationships

- Recognise the most effective channels of communication

- Apply your personality traits for authentic influence

Summit Day 1

13 Oct

Case Study

Success is dependent on its people and a healthy environment that fosters positive relationships. Leanne’s passion is building inclusive work cultures that empower the people. She joins us today to share her stories and practical strategies for achieving success.

- Maximise your team's strengths and minimise their weaknesses

- Discover practical strategies for building an open and positive team culture

- Develop trusting relationships in your teams

  • Leanne Mortlock Chief Operations Officer Provincial Education Group

Case Study

Diversity is a buzzword that is heard a lot these days. As New Zealanders we are lucky to be living in a society where diversity & inclusion is not only supported but is our norm. Working in the health sector Leigh has seen how diverse New Zealanders truly are and joins us today to discuss what diversity looks like to her and the challenges that we still need to overcome in order to be a truly inclusive workforce. 


- Understand what it means to be operating in a society that is bi-cultural 

- Be part of the story Leigh weaves and discover how we can be more inclusive leaders 

-  Enjoy a look into operations in the health sector 

  • Leigh Potter Chief Operating Officer Matai

Expert Commentary

Leadership incorporates three elements - leading self, leading others, and leading your organisation. The ability to recognise, understand and navigate our emotions, as well as the people around us, is critical for leadership success. Derri will share her experiences promoting emotional intelligence in her team and provide tactics you can implement in your professional and personal life.

- Foster an open and safe workplace to encourage success

- Understand how emotional intelligence impacts leadership

- Explore strategies to recognise the emotional states of others and respond effectively

  • Derri Evans Agile Coach Westpac New Zealand Limited

Case Study

The world we live in is changing massively - and everyone is affected. We need to consider what the future of operations means for our roles. Emma is well versed in the disruptive nature of the tech and digital industries. She joins us to discuss the exciting future of these roles, the changing structures, and how we can move with them.

- Explore the exciting future of operations roles

- Understand the opportunities for organisational growth

- Discuss how we can create panic-free cultures in these environments

  • Emma Watson Chief Operating Officer Fronde NZ


Different cultures, opinions and backgrounds bring new and innovative ideas to the table. Unfortunately, unconscious bias in decision making and recruitment still prevails. Join our esteemed panellists as they discuss their experiences in building teams and the necessity of diversity for organisations to not only survive, but thrive.

- Discover the strategies these senior leaders have used to ensure their teams and organisations thrive

- Develop your diverse thinking capabilities and expand your knowledge

- Destroy close-minded culture from the top down

  • Peter Lensink Managing Director Transdev Auckland

  • Eva Smaill Continuous Improvement Specialist Auckland Council

Case Study

It's often easier for us to put on a mask when we come into the office or mimic the behaviour of colleagues in fear of judgement. Impostor syndrome is especially true for women entering or working in traditionally male environments. Delve into Nicole's leadership story and discuss the power of trusting your abilities.

- Have the confidence to back yourself completely

- Establish your skillset, not your gender, as the point of focus

- Acknowledge your doubts and stop questioning yourself

  • Nicole Manawatu Executive Director, Operations New Zealand Carbon Group


What are industry leaders doing to ensure traditionally male-dominated roles are open to women? How do you guarantee that a conservative business pursues and boosts diversity? Sit down with Mark and Kari from NZ Post as they delve into the challenges and changes within operations.

- Discover the changes NZ Post has made to increase inclusiveness

- Embrace technological advancements to push operations into the future

- Learn how to build relationships with your peers and leadership to drive diversity organisation-wide

Expert Commentary

Research has shown that your teams must be invested in their work to perform at their best. Team behaviour is especially relevant with operational teams who are directly responsible for an organisation's success. Eva is passionate about improving workplace culture and implementing strategies to support companies to be better. She'll teach you tactics to get the most out of your team.


- Strategies to be a supportive leader

- Walk away with an understanding of how to increase team performance

- Understand your team and embrace different working styles

  • Eva Smaill Continuous Improvement Specialist Auckland Council

Summit Day 2

14 Oct

Case Study

Resilience is misunderstood as being tough and pushing your emotions down to soldier on. But resilience is about upholding your mental wellbeing in the face of challenging circumstances. Claire is a believer in the many faces of resilience and will explore ways you can develop and engage in resilience.

- Understand what resilience looks like to you

- Uncover the lessons in strength Claire has learnt throughout her career

- Embrace new ways of being resilient

  • Claire Neville Former General Manager, Operations NZ Bus

Case Study

In the rapidly changing environment we live in it is important for leaders and organisations to find their point of different to ensure they are relevant and successful. As the Chief Operating Officer for a sustainable waste management company Elaine knows that it is like to find your niche in the market and overcome the challenges associated.

- Discover the obstacles Elaine and her organisation have faced in their quest for sustainability

- Learn what strategies Elaine has used to overcome adversity

- Understand the key strategies employed to lead teams managing this change.

  • Elaine Morgan Chief Operating Officer and Director Green Gorilla

Case Study

Change and transition are at the heart of all operations roles. Managing differences between strategic and tactical operations will require you to build resilience and step-up with confidence. These are all challenges that Penelope has faced in her role transition. She will discuss the lessons learnt and practical strategies to increase your confidence.

- Establish effective processes to ensure success

- Learn to trust and delegate to your team

- Develop resilience and confidence in your skills

  • Penelope Rae Director, Business Beca

Case Study

Gaining and maintaining confidence is the first step to career progression in the ambiguity of the operations landscape. In this session, Louisa will explore what it takes to build this confidence in yourself and your teams. Discover what she looks for in operations professionals and how she backed herself to step-up into operations leadership.

- Begin erasing your self-doubt

- Set achievable goals and make them a reality

- Embrace the unknown as an opportunity

  • Louisa Homersham Deputy Chief Operating Officer Otago Polytechnic

Case Study

Rapid industry growth has brought new opportunities for career progression. Tandi recently made a shift into the security operations space and is here today to discuss what this transition entailed and provide strategies for you to seize opportunities.

- View change as an opportunity to learn

- Recognise the value of your skillset

- Strategies to build confidence

  • Tandi McCarthy Security Operations Manager NZ Transport Agency

Case Study

When things go wrong, you need to trust in your abilities to get the job done. You need to have confidence in your mistakes, understanding them as a learning opportunity. Paula is an advocate of the growth mindset, and will discuss how her experiences working across two hemispheres lead her to love the chaos and thrive in operations.

- Learn to view mistakes as a learning curb not a stumbling block

- Acknowledge challenges but use them to provide opportunities

- Trust in your ability to succeed

  • Paula O'Flynn Regional Operations Manager Ministry of Justice

Case Study

All leaders have multiple priorities that they are juggling at any one time. Whether it is work projects, meetings, friends or family all leaders face the challenge of trying to create more time to get everything done. Tracey has consistently worked her way up into executive leadership roles and with this transition has come increased juggling. Join this session as Tracey shares her insights and explores the challenges of juggling multiple tasks. 


- Learn to trust and delegate to your team

- Maintain healthy relationships with your stakeholders

- Understand that mistakes happen and learn from them

  • Tracey Hickman Executive General Manager, Retail Operations Genesis Energy


Over the last few days, we have heard from incredible operations professionals from different industries. What has been the stand out for you? What have you learnt? And what will you take back to your teams? 


- Discuss your learning from the past two days 

- Understand the themes of the conference 

- Map your future in operations 

Post-Summit Workshop

15 Oct


You need to feel confident in your abilities as a leader, delivering messages and strategies with authenticity. Though a simple premise, it is easier said than done. We often pretend to be someone we're not to be taken seriously.

But what makes an authentic leader? Through her expert facilitation, Leslie will encourage you to discuss and challenge your distinct leadership qualities, leaving you with a personalised action plan to help you accelerate career growth.

Tell us about yourself

- Discuss in groups what your role is and ideas for leadership progression

- What setbacks do you experience?

- What do you need to be an authentic leader? 

Developing authentic leadership

- Establish your primary strengths as a leader 

- Begin to trust in your instincts 

- Develop self-awareness 

Building confidence

- Use your skills to strengthen your confidence 

- Discuss limits to leadership with your peers

- Understand that facing adversity is a part of leadership and does not undermine your skills 

Drive forwards

- Develop your processes to be your authentic self 

- Lead with purpose and confidence 

- Walk away with a personalised action plan 

  • Pippa Lawlor Professional Development Facilitator Mint Education


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