Principal Advisor – Māori

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Tēnei tūranga – About the role

Te Whakatairanga Service Delivery is committed to a recognised and active partnership between the Crown and Tangata Whenua (Māori) to realise better outcomes for Māori and all New Zealanders.

The Principal Advisor- Māori provides high quality specialist strategic and pragmatic advice to ensure that Te Whakatairanga Service Delivery is well positioned to deliver on the Crown’s responsibilities under Te Tiriti o Waitangi in all our regulatory systems and operational service delivery. 

  • This will include:
    • Supporting the Pou Whakatairanga/Director Māori, to lead the development of MBIE’s strategic alliances with Māori across our systems.
    • Supporting the Pou Whakatairanga/Director Māori, to develop the Te Whakatairanga Māori strategy, annual work plans and implementation.
    • Supporting and leading initiatives to enhance Te Whakatairanga Service Delivery’s capability to deliver on its responsibilities under Te Tiriti o Waitangi i.e. utilising mātauranga Māori and kaupapa Māori frameworks to realise better outcomes for Māori and all New Zealanders.
    • Providing specialist advice on how our services, interactions and engagement could be improved to better meet the needs and aspirations of Māori
    • Supporting MBIE alignment to upcoming Māori Crown Relations capability initiative: Whāinga Amorangi.

This is a highly collaborative role that will need to actively build and maintain relationships with the General Managers and their teams of Te Whakatairanga Service Delivery.

Ngā herenga – Requirements of the role

Personal specifications

  • Me matatau i te reo Māori me ōna tikanga - take part in general conversation with speakers of te reo Māori, understand most of what is said and contribute relevant comments.
  • Expert understanding of Crown responsibilities under Te Tiriti o Waitangi and the aspirations and needs of Māori.
  • Proven demonstrated experience of advancing both Crown aspirations and the aspirations of Māori under Te Tiriti o Waitangi.
  • Proven experience working in a policy and service delivery agency where partnership with Māori communities, iwi, hapū and key Māori organisations are prioritised.
  • Must be a skilled writer with the ability to articulate their ideas clearly and concisely in a persuasive way.
  • An ability to communicate effectively, verbally and in writing with a wide range of people at all levels, both internal and external to MBIE.
  • A proven track record of experience and achievement in working with senior leadership teams and providing high level strategic advice in a complex environment.
  • Strong systems thinking skills, able to quickly develop an understanding of context in relation to the insights required and provide strategic advice.
  • Is a smart operator, working effectively to influence within a large organisation with responsibility for a broad range of regulatory systems.
  • Understands the strategic context, current policy agenda and priorities, and can see policy, commercial and operational issues in the wider context and apply foresight and judgement.


  • Tertiary qualification in a relevant field or equivalent experience.


  • Must have the legal right to live and work in New Zealand.

Takohanga tuhinga o mua – Key accountabilities and deliverables

Critical areas of success

  • Responsible for proactively working with the Pou Whakatairanga/Director Māori and Te Whakatairanga Service Delivery senior leaders to engage with hapū, iwi, and hapori Māori to strengthen and support partnering opportunities and improved service delivery.
  • Can lead others in understanding what Māori Crown relationship skills are, how to learn them, why they are important and the impact they can have.
  • Advises on, and implements, systemic methods to address and measure institutional racism and advance equity.
  • Stimulates and builds engagement with Iwi partners on critical changes to how Te Whakatairanga Service Delivery may look in the future and how we can work together on this future direction.
  • Leads initiatives to enhance Te Whakatairanga Service Delivery capability to deliver on its responsibilities under Te Tiriti o Waitangi.
  • Provides robust advice, and intellectual leadership in the areas of mātauranga Māori, kaupapa Māori frameworks, Te Ao Māori, to Te Whakatairanga – Service Delivery.
  • Committed and skilled stakeholder relationship manager, using their highly developed influencing, negotiation and collaboration skills and experience to build and maintain important relationships and partnerships with senior internal and external stakeholders.

Relationship management

  • Recognised internally and externally as an innovative and cutting edge thought leader, contributing their knowledge and expertise to achieve the Ministry’s outcomes.
  • Builds and maintains enduring trust-based relationships with key stakeholders that ensure MBIE’s views are influential in their decision-making.
  • Future proofs partnerships and relationships to ensure they are maintained in the future if/when officials change.
  • Develops and maintains effective and productive working relationships with relevant government agencies and other relevant MBIE business groups.
  • Provides strategic advice on kaupapa Māori frameworks and processes to assist Te Whakatairanga Service Delivery functions to achieve better outcomes with and for Māori.
  • Represents whole-of-Ministry views and protects its reputation in external interactions.
  • Manages multiple complex issues concurrently and actively and independently manages workload.

Strategy and engagement

  • Leads advice on the strategies and engagement to ensure the Crown is well positioned to deliver on its responsibilities under Te Tiriti o Waitangi in Te Whakatairanga Service Delivery.
  • Partners with the Pou Whakatairanga/Director Māori to lead strategies and initiatives.
  • Communicates complex engagement issues and concepts clearly and succinctly.
  • Provides authoritative and candid advice that recognises the choices and constraints Te Whakatairanga Service delivery face, anticipates needs, predicts and plans for sensitive issues.
  • Provides Te Whakatairanga Service Delivery staff with advice and support as they engage with and integrate a Te Ao Māori perspective into their team’s policy development and service delivery.
  • Ensures practice is in line with MBIE/Te Whakatairanga Service Delivery policy and direction.

Wellbeing, health and safety

  • Displays commitment through actively supporting all safety and wellbeing initiatives
  • Ensures own and others safety at all times
  • Complies with relevant safety and wellbeing policies, procedures, safe systems of work and event reporting
  • Reports all incidents/accidents, including near misses in a timely fashion
  • Is involved in health and safety through participation and consultation

Tō tūranga i roto i te Manatū – Your place in the Ministry

The Principal Advisor - Māori position reports to Te Pou Whakatairanga, Director Māori of Te Whakatairanga Service Delivery group, which is positioned in the Engagement and Experience Branch.

More information about MBIE's structure

To mātou aronga – What we do for Aotearoa New Zealand

Hīkina Whakatutuki is the te reo Māori name for the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment. Hīkina means to uplift. Whakatutuki means to move forward, to make successful. Our name speaks to our purpose, Grow Aotearoa New Zealand for All.

To Grow Aotearoa New Zealand for All, we put people at the heart of our mahi. Based on the principles of Te Tiriti o Waitangi / The Treaty of Waitangi, we are committed to upholding authentic partnerships with Māori.

As agile public service leaders, we use our breadth and experience to navigate the ever-changing world. We are service providers, policy makers, investors and regulators. We engage with diverse communities, businesses and regions. Our work touches on the daily lives of New Zealanders. We grow opportunities (Puāwai), guard and protect (Kaihāpai) and innovate and navigate towards a better future (Auaha).

Ngā matatau – Our competencies

Cultivates innovation We create new and better ways for the organisation to be successful by challenging the status quo generating new and creative ideas and translating them into workable solutions.

Nimble learning We are curious and actively learn through experimentation when tackling new problems by learning as we go when facing new situations and challenges.

Customer focus We build strong customer relationships and deliver customer-centric solutions by listening and gaining insights into the needs of the communities we serve and actively seeking and responding to feedback.

Decision quality We make quality and timely decisions that shape the future for our communities and keep the organisation moving forward by relying on an appropriate mix of analysis, wisdom, experience, and judgement to make valid and reliable decisions.

Action oriented We step up, taking on new opportunities and tough challenges with purpose, urgency and discipline by taking responsibility, ownership and action on challenges, and being accountable for the results.

Collaborates We connect, working together to build partnerships with our communities, working collaboratively to meet shared objectives by gaining trust and support of others; actively seeking the views, experiences, and opinions of others and by working co-operatively with others across MBIE, the public sector and external stakeholder groups.

Te Tiriti o Waitangi

As an agency of the public service, MBIE has a responsibility to contribute to the Crown meeting its obligations under Te Tiriti o Waitangi (Te Tiriti). Meeting our commitment to Te Tiriti will contribute towards us realising the overall aims of Te Ara Amiorangi – Our Path, Our Direction, and achieve the outcome of Growing New Zealand for All. The principles of Te Tiriti - including partnership, good faith, and active protection – are at the core of our work. MBIE is committed to delivering on our obligations as a Treaty partner with authenticity and integrity and to enable Māori interests. We are committed to ensuring that MBIE is well placed to meet our obligations under the Public Service Act 2020 (Te Ao Tūmatanui) to support the Crown in strengthening the Māori/Crown Relationship under the Treaty and to build MBIE’s capability, capacity and cultural intelligence to deliver this.

Mahi i roto i te Ratonga Tūmatanui – Working in the public service

Ka mahitahi mātou o te ratonga tūmatanui kia hei painga mō ngā tāngata o Aotearoa i āianei, ā, hei ngā rā ki tua hoki. He kawenga tino whaitake tā mātou hei tautoko i te Karauna i runga i āna hononga ki a ngāi Māori i raro i te Tiriti o Waitangi. Ka tautoko mātou i te kāwanatanga manapori. Ka whakakotahingia mātou e te wairua whakarato ki ō mātou hapori, ā, e arahina ana mātou e ngā mātāpono me ngā tikanga matua o te ratonga tūmatanui i roto i ā mātou mahi.

In the public service we work collectively to make a meaningful difference for New Zealanders now and in the future. We have an important role in supporting the Crown in its relationships with Māori under the Treaty of Waitangi. We support democratic government. We are unified by a spirit of service to our communities and guided by the core principles and values of the public service in our work.

What does it mean to work in Aotearoa New Zealand’s Public Service?(external link) — Te Kawa Mataaho The Public Service Commission

MBIE value: Māia - Bold & brave, Pae Kahurangi - Build our future, Mahi Tahi - Better together, Pono Me Te Tika - Own it