Organisational culture can be one of the hardest things to change, but Otago Regional Council’s Chief Executive, Sarah
Gardner, is embracing the task. She is challenging staff to look at how the ORC sees itself and its role in sustaining
and protecting Otago’s future.
Chief Executive Sarah Gardner said, “Without a shared sense of purpose and what we stand for, it’s difficult to do our
best work, and to truly pull together as ‘Team ORC’. It’s important that ORC has a clear vision for its future, that
it’s staff and Councillors can talk about its work in a way that makes sense to others and to have bottom line standards
for the way we treat each other and value our work.”
Focus has been placed on ensuring staff, Councillors and the general public have greater awareness of the ORC’s role and
its vision for Otago’s future.
Mrs Gardner said, “The values and behaviours determined by staff and Councillors together help to provide a holistic
approach to our organisational culture. This allows us all to better understand the drivers for organisation and helps
us strive towards success while operating within the values we have set for ourselves.”
ORC staff from all levels of the organisation and ORC Councillors, have been involved in several workshops to review the
ORC’s values and establish four key statements of purpose (pillars).
Following several workshops and consultation on ORC’s ‘Organisational Narrative’, Council has formally endorsed a new
Vision, Purpose statement (Pillars) and Values to guide the organisation into the future.
Today, Council have endorsed this revised Vision and Pillars (Purpose) for the organisation. These are:
FOR OUR FUTURE
Working together for a sustainable Otago
We protect Otago’s environment and people through information, planning, regulation, infrastructure and emergency
preparedness and response.
We work to create connection and pride in our region. We do that by linking diverse ideals, views, groups and sectors
for sustainable outcomes.
We work with people to enhance our Otago environment and its liveability, by restoring on what is important.
We exchange information, tools and knowledge with our communities, so they can do things better for our environment and
As a guardian of Otago’s environment and people, we take great care in all we do. Without a sense of caring, there can
be no sense of community.
We do the right thing, even when it’s not the easy thing. We do what we say we’ll do and treasure the trust of our
community. We are ethical and principled in everything we do.
Open & Honest
We encourage openness and honesty between ourselves and our community and stakeholders, especially when the
conversations are challenging.
We all love Otago, so we build relationships to achieve great things.
Know it. Own it. Do it.
We are bold and curious in our thinking, always seeking better ways to do things. We have the courage to leave it better
than we found it.
Mrs Gardner said, “Ensuring staff feel empowered and heard is key to taking ownership of ORC’s culture. Seeing staff
engaging with the proposed vision, pillars, and values was fantastic and I am certain this work will assist us to help
others understand our organisation and the work that we do”.