Iwi affiliations: Ngaati Ranginui, Ngaati Awa, Ngaati
Pikiao, Ngaati Maniapoto
Other Qualifications: Dip ATE, BEd
Yvonne O’Brien has always wanted to complete business
leadership post graduate studies so the Waikato MBA at the Waikato-Tainui
College was the perfect course for her.
Being a mother and still working full-time as Associate
Kaihautu Delivery at Te Waananga o Aotearoa (TWOA), she often felt it was
difficult to maintain a balance between her commitments and the MBA.
"The MBA journey has
equally been about intelligence as it has been about strength of character and
resilience. It has been hugely challenging while still working full-time but it
has also been immensely rewarding” says Yvonne.
Her major research paper looked at Maaori leadership,
focusing with an appreciative lens on leadership at TWOA. What she found has
been amongst her biggest learnings.
Yvonnes research affirmed her belief that both extraordinary
and transformative leadership exists in our Maaori world, has done so for a
very long time and occurs in Maaori organisations and communities right here in
front of us.
"I have had the opportunity to meet inspiring people and have
also had the space to deeply reflect on my practice as a leader and manager” says