Rachel Cornwall
Director, Red Consulting Group

1. Understand what this region actually has to offer that provides a platform for sustainability and growth. That cannot be sunshine and lifestyle alone … wine and tourism cannot sit at the heart of our core marketing messages. Get to the heart of the commercial drivers and capabilities of this region, and work to its strengths.

2. Accept that we are predominantly a primary based economy – that is not an embarrassment. Build on this, and look at where the opportunities lie to extend and add value to the existing commercial operations. Bravely, boldly ask for new business. It is out there in other regions; this region can attract more of it, and potentially at a much lower unit cost. We are not land-locked; we have fertile land, open space, and a lot of people looking for work.

3. The reality is that the Hawke’s Bay lifestyle does attract and retain a large pool of talented, educated, and often extremely entrepreneurial people. But what really matters is putting in the hard work, dedication and seizing an opportunity that exists as opposed to standing around thinking and talking about possibilities in large political forums.

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