A crucial starting point for leaders is to consider: What is our purpose?
Here we can consider some business wisdom and show how that relates to the Maori worldview. Dee Hock, the founder of Visa International counselled that: “A purpose is not an objective, it's not a mission statement—a purpose is an unambiguous expression of that which people jointly wish to become.”
The challenge and opportunity in this definition of purpose is to more consciously engage in the process of ‘becoming’ and to more fully fulfil potential personally and collectively. From a Maori perspective this idea of ‘becoming’ is known as ‘tupu’ which means ‘to unfold one’s nature’. In doing this we are drawing from the realm of potential, known as Te Kore. Our intention is to transform potential into mauri ora, wellbeing.
Wiewed from this perspective, the leadership challenge we all face and our individual and collective purpose is to: “Be awake to the potential of ourselves, others and situations and to then consciously manifest that potential.”
This requires hopara, exploration and an explorers approach to the world. We need to become ‘Explorers of our World’ seeking to discover, tuhuru, which means to shine light upon that which is not seen. To become an explorer of the world is to set sail beyond the compass of our existing knowledge and to traverse unchartered waters in ourselves and in the world.