A personal message from Ken

Ken McMaster

I wanted you, who have been our loyal supporters, to be aware of what has been happening at HMA over the past 18 months. Why? Because you are important to us and have an interest in what we do and how we do it. I know this from the feedback I receive from people who are part of the wider HMA community.

It is easy to develop self-doubt in these tough business conditions. In fact the last 18 months has felt like the perfect storm for us at HMA. It seems that we have been caught up in, not just one challenge, but a multitude. The loss of our new building due to the Christchurch earthquake has cost us dearly in terms of the loss of investment in the property, the brand-new fit-out, and loss of opportunity costs. Add to this scenario the global recession, tightening up of funding for contract training, greater competition for contracts, and of course the inevitable loss of staff who move towards more secure options. All of this does at times leave one doubting one’s personal competency as the leader of a busy consultancy.

While cognitively I understand all of this, it is still distressing at a personal level to have to say goodbye to great staff. At HMA we invest heavily in our people and know that generally there is an unwillingness to leave, but that necessity is also a time for reality. We look back at the not insignificant contribution we have made across the social service sector within New Zealand, Australia and Asia. We are not moving away from our core business of doing high quality programme development, training design and workshop delivery, because at HMA we are not quitters. Some people have suggested that it might be time to throw in the towel and get a proper job.

It is my view that we will come back stronger if we can weather the current storm. Through all of this turmoil we have been working away in the background rethinking our approach (re-engineering some call it) and have had a number of wonderful minds working on our business model and the various forms that it will take as we move forward. We are excited about the shape that HMA will take over the next five years.

“Working with passion and integrity to bring out the best in people” is our mission statement. Underneath this are a set of values that we believe encapsulate what HMA stands for. We base it around the word RESPECT.

RESPONSIBILITY – being accountability and responsible for how we are and what we do (and don’t do) is central to being part of HMA. We have high standards of integrity in all things and expect the best of our people.

ENTHUSIASM – we are passionate about what we do. We ensure that the legacy we leave is a positive, useful and pragmatic one.

SAFETY – we believe that people need to be safe to take risks. We create safety at all levels of our work including personal, professional and organisational.

PARTNERSHIP – we bring our experience, practice and knowledge to enhance the work of others, as they enhance ours. We are committed to long-term engagement with organisations and building enduring relationships that can stand the test of time.

EXPLORATION – we push to explore the best approaches based upon the best information (evidence) available. We take risks with our ideas and practice, always searching for more effective ways to manage issues.

COLLABORATION – we value others and what they bring to the table. We walk with people to create better and more fulfilling lives, work practice and organisational structures.

TAKING ACTION – we are active players in making a difference and leaving our families, communities and society better than how we found it. We are committed to change at multiple levels – personal, professional, community and structural.

We will continue to work hard to continue the level of service we have to the community through our work. At this time, there is even more need for high quality support for work on the front-line. That is where HMA really does make a difference.

Published on Monday, November 19th, 2012, under What Ken thinks

5 Responses to “A personal message from Ken”

  1. Marianne Lammers says:

    Sorry to hear about all the challenges HMA and you are facing. Hang in there as your work is important.

    All the best for 2013!

    Marianne

  2. Daryl Gregory says:

    Kia ora ken challenging time brother but as you say stick in there and things change look forward to 2013 and hope we can do some stuff together again looking forward to MI in melbourne as well

  3. Carmen Park says:

    I have had the benefit of attending several motivating and inspiring training sessions delivered by you and some of your colleagues while working in Corrections in NZ. Long may your work within the public sector continue! Regards Carmen.

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