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The Wellington Seminar involves the input of a number of experts, officials and MPs to provide participants with the views and knowledge of the people most closely involved in the policy process.

The Wellington Seminar runs for one and a half days, with the ability for additional features to be added on a demand basis. There are a limited number of spaces available per seminar.

The Seminar is primarily held at BusinessNZ's premises in Wellington, with external visits within the Wellington CBD.

The Seminar involves three key areas:

A. Contextual Approach

Achieving public policy change – Kirk Hope, CEO of BusinessNZ

Kirk Hope, Chief Executive of New Zealand's most influential business advocacy organisation, will provide insights, thoughts and practical tips to assist business leaders in achieving change.

Discussion includes:

  • Government's place in New Zealand/democratic process
  • Identifying key decision makers in policy
  • The art of proposing, not opposing
  • Building key relationships

The submission process

Discussion includes:

  • Choosing to submit
  • Birth of a submission
  • What to say and how to say it
  • Life after the submission process

B. Tackling Current Issues

Today's issues – Political communications practitioner

There are many ways in which decisions are reached within the Beehive. The Seminar equips business leaders wtih the ability to recognise and understand these different pathways and to best prepare for them.

The Seminar provides participants with the opportunity to engage with a variety of people and groups involved in the political process, including decision-makers, journalists, lobbyists and representatives from industry associations.

Discussion includes:

  • Prioritising policies/political realities
  • How to state the case for change
  • Selling the idea to the general public
  • Relationship between Ministers and officials

C. Relationship with Government

Departments & their role in policy making – Major Govt Dept Senior Officials

The relationship with officials who develop and consult on laws/regulations is just as important as that with Ministers of the Crown. The Seminar outlines how they operate and their role in policy making.

Discussion with high ranking officials includes:

  • Life cycle of departments vs Governments
  • Structure for policy development
  • Engagement tools with the private sector

Role of select committees – Select Committee specialist

The Select Committee provides the opportunity to publicly submit your views and recommendations to a range of MPs across the political spectrum. Preparation is key to ensure a positive outcome.

Discussion includes:

  • Outline of select committee process
  • Preparation for select committee
  • Do's and don'ts of appearing in front of a select committee
  • Strategic uses of other parliamentary processes (question time, OIA requests etc)
  • Participants will also take part in a select committee exercise so that they become better prepared when attending a select committee to present their submission.

Meet the politician – Government & Opposition MP

While there are a number of similarities in the day-to-day operations of a Government and an Opposition MP, there are also clear differences. At some point today's Opposition MP may be tomorrow's Government Minister.

The Seminar will provide executives opportunities to build relationships with up and coming MPs from all sides of the house, so as the participant grows in their professional capacity, so does their relationship with politicians who move up the political ranks.

Meeting with up and coming Government MP

Discussion includes:

  • Understanding the role of a Government MP/Minister
  • When best to engage with Government MPs
  • Process and preparation for meeting – what Government MPs are looking for

Meeting with up and coming Opposition MP

Discussion includes:

  • Understanding the role and views of an opposition MP
  • Benefits of relationship building for future policies
  • Process and preparation for meeting – what opposition MPs are looking for.