Every year Kea’s Inspire Days helps hundreds of Kiwis by putting our best and brightest on stage to tell their stories. This year was no exception. Ambassador Deirdre Dawson attended the event this year and walked out the door with a real spring in her step.

Catherine Robinson, Kiwi Landing Pad
Catherine Robinson, Kiwi Landing Pad

Inspire – From Surviving to Thriving

‘New Zealand being on the cusp of something big’ was the recurring theme of the Inspire 2013 event. Hosted by KEA and AUT, it boasted some of our finest leaders currently excelling on the worldwide stage.

The speakers were indeed inspirational, from scientists to systems analysts, young to old, with a strong female contingent taking the stage.  It was thoughtfully noted that Maori and Pacific Island speakers were missing from the line-up and would no doubt be changing in the future. Speakers included:

Key points to take us from ‘surviving to thriving,’ reiterated by numerous speakers, included the need to drop the “she’ll be right attitude,” we can do better!  However to nurturing the innovative “no.8 wire” beliefs Kiwis are so famous for will lead us to success in the future.

The audience was encouraged to be courageous and confident in sharing their stories, and to keep asking the impossible questions.

From a business perspective we look at overseas markets and the most exciting element is the size of the market. And we head off suitcase in hand ready to sell to a market often 100+ times our local domestic market but, our sales and marketing collateral are often based on what has worked in New Zealand. Succeeding offshore is being able to adapt to the market, fast. – Catherine Robinson, Kiwi Landing Pad

It was brilliant to hear from Catherine Robinson who spoke about the Kiwi Landing Pad in SoMa, San Francisco. This area is home to 8000 startups within a 2km block and is the bricks and mortar space for Kiwi tech companies wanting a piece of the American Pie. Read more about Cat’s talk here.

Thanks KEA. There was certainly a buzz and sense of pride in the air as people emerged from the auditorium. Guests walked away feeling taller, part of something a lot larger and indeed inspired.

About our Ambassador // This article was contributed by Community Ambassador Deirdre Dawson. While she is currently working on the person to person rental startup Rentaholic, her varied background includes being an official Ambassador for Kohu Road ice cream, Business Manager for Disruptiv Graffiti Collective including Disrupt Magazine and Disrupt Gallery and teaching in Japan.