What motivates New Zealanders? Success - or passion?

By Kathryn Wilson

18 September 2017

I recently attended the launch of Suncorp New Zealand’s Business Success Index, and joined a panel with other business people to discuss the findings.

Suncorp’s research showed that when it comes to business success, bigger is not necessarily better for Kiwi businesses.  78% of respondents valued work life balance more than growth. 

When I relate the findings to my own business journey, they ring true - but miss a key point. And that’s the question of what’s motivating us at work, and in life.

Loving what you do every day

As a business owner, I find my work and the rest of my life are inextricably linked. 

There are no set hours, and there’s no clocking off. I might do a half a day of work, but then be on my laptop late at night when our daughter is in bed.a

Finding ‘work life balance’ in those circumstances isn’t just about taking time off or going home early. 

It’s about finding true passion in what I do, and developing a career out of a product that I love.

Best, not bigger = success

For my business, the measure of success is not ‘most’ – it’s ‘best’.

My goal is to create limited edition shoes, and a big part of the brand is the exclusivity of each design – our customers feel lucky if they get the shoes they want before they sell out.

As a business, we’re ambitious to grow, but pace of growth takes a back seat - one thing we won’t compromise to achieve growth is quality. 

I’m much more focussed on building a community around the value of good design, and honouring the promises we’re making to our customers about the quality they’re buying.

Loving what you do, loving the product, and loving the journey. That’s work-life balance for me.

About Kathryn

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