On Wednesday 14 May, I had the opportunity to give a presentation about the TalentNZ project at one of Kiwibank’s Lunch and Learn sessions. These sessions are organised by Jess Segal for the leadership team and occur on the second Wednesday of every month.

The session was a great opportunity to introduce our new TalentNZ Ecosystem and its four key components: grow, attract, retain and connect. In groups, the attendees discussed the ecosystem, using it to consider how talent is managed at Kiwibank. The key points from this initial discussion were then developed into some tangible ideas for  growing, attracting, retaining and connecting talent. 

Broadly, the group’s key observations were centred on the interconnection between the different parts of the ecosystem. The consensus was that these four key concepts of grow, attract, retain and connect could provide a useful framework for thinking about how the organisation as a whole manages talent. Especially in terms of how it understands itself in context and articulates its overall purpose, culture and strategy for growth. One group in particular used the ecosystem to define the flow of talent within an organisation: with attract being linked to the culture and purpose of an organisation, grow and retain with living this promise and connect with facilitating upward mobility.

It was thought that the projection of a clear purpose and culture for the organisation, needs to be applied and reviewed overtime for it to be a successful means of attracting and retaining talent. To communicate this purpose to individual employees, the groups felt that it was crucial to provide clear induction plans for newcomers, supporting the culture of the organisation so that they can see their potential for growth and the value of their role. Further, understanding the employee as a whole and using their skills and passions (not just in relation to banking) to increase both employee and employer satisfaction was also identified as an important consideration.

Thinking about New Zealand, the groups believe that there is a disconnect between education and employment, which needs to be addressed. Particularly as regards to how organisations connect with schools and tertiary to facilitate the journey from education to employment. They also considered it essential to have an understanding of the organisation within its broader context, appreciating that the flow of talent between organisations and even countries can be beneficial not only to Kiwibank but New Zealand as a whole.

Below is a synthesised list of the groups’ ideas:


  • Kiwibank passport, to increase connectivity and mobility between departments. This would involve providing employees with a ‘passport’ that gets stamped each time an employee spends time in another department.
  • Alumni groups to stay connected and maintain relationships with ex-employees.
  • Secondment, to increase employees understanding of how the organisation functions.


  • Mentoring programmes within schools, which identify talent and help provide career guidance, facilitating the transition from education to employment.
  • Add to existing leadership programmes so that all employees have opportunities to nurture their talents


  • Onboarding, using a mentoring system alongside clear development plans for new employees.
  • Clear reward and recognition strategies within managers’ tool kits.

The Lunch and Learn session was a great opportunity to have an open discussion about these ideas, and we would like to extend a special thank you to Murray Wu and Jess Segal for making this event possible.