Earlier this month Kaan and I had the privilege to hear Tame Iti speak at this year’s Leadership NZ’s Sir Paul Reeves Memorial Lecture. On a day when there was more pronounced collective doubt and despair around us about world leadership (due to the US election results), it was really nice to hear about someone else’s perspective on a different kind of leadership – one that is rooted in one’s identity, mana and integrity.
"Just because someone has authority,
does not mean they have more mana." – Tame Iti
Tame discussed the importance of mana in leadership, and how this concept can help people transcend concepts of authority, especially when people in places of authority abuse their perceived power over others. To recognise this mana in yourself and in others, so you can speak your truth to them; recognising you’re on the same level as them, eye to eye. To know that people have the power to question authority when that authority no longer have the people at its heart. He gives a powerful example in the methods employed by Tuhoe, and how decisions by the iwi start with the whanau and can push its way out onto the bigger picture, just as a raindrop travels to the river and to the sea.
You can watch a video of the full lecture produced by webfilms above, as well as see more pictures from the night via Leadership NZ’s Facebook page. Massive gratitude to Sina, Tania and Judy of Leadership NZ for letting us be a part of this incredible event.
I’ll leave you with this quote from Tame Iti on the night, especially when thinking about Aotearoa and the world at this point in time:
“History has woven us together, we are the kete.
We are the knowledge. Eye to eye.” – Tame Iti