Tim Barke

Defining a new direction for Lake Wānaka Tourism
Client Tim Barke
Kate helped us revolutionise the way we look at our role as an organisation

Kate helped us through the process of stepping back from what we have always done in the past and looking at why we are here, what we want to achieve and then looking at how we can go about achieving it.  It has helped us revolutionise the way we look at our role as an organisation and more importantly our role in our community and place and how we can benefit them along with our members.

Kate has a great manner and approach, facilitating thoughts of participants while drawing on examples from her extensive experience without pushing her own ideas but rather offering input and suggestions to help participants develop their own ideas

Kate’s style is very good in that she creates an environment where good sharing of ideas can happen in a relaxed and ‘safe’ atmosphere. She does this while keeping the required progress going in order to achieve what we needed to in the time available.

Kate has a great way of facilitating the development of ideas in an environment where people feel comfortable to contribute and discuss.  We highly recommend Kate as an advisor, consultant and facilitator.

Tim Barke
Acting General Manager, Lake Wānaka Tourism
Envisioning what the future for tourism in the Wānaka region could look like

This was a special project for me as Wānaka is one of my favourite places in the world and tourism is an industry I’m particularly interested in.   Like the rest of NZ’s tourism industry, Wānaka  has been hammered by Covid 19; in 2019, visitors spent more than $600m in the region, with 60% of visitors being from overseas.

Even before Covid hit,  pressures created by tourism meant that the sustainability of growth, measured by year-on-year increases in visitor numbers,  was questionable.   These  pressures have been particularly pronounced in Wānaka with visitor spend in the last 10 years growing at twice the national rate and the resident population doubling over the same period.

The Board and the Management Team wanted to use the enforced pause of Covid, to take a step back and think about how tourism in the region could  ‘square the circle’ of revitalising  the essential economic contribution of tourism, with the  impact of tourism on the host community and the environment.

The start point for the project was the love and sense of care that everyone involved has for Wānaka.    This meant that rather than thinking just about how to minimise or off-set the negative consequences of tourism,  LWT wanted to focus on how tourism can be part of ensuring that  Wānaka thrives, now and for future generations.

After a round of consultation,  I facilitated sessions with the Board and Team where we defined a new Purpose for LWT,  the areas of strategic focus, and a new Destination Brand Framework.

For me, this was a chance to do a deep dive into the debate about the future of tourism in Aotearoa New Zealand,  and particularly to learn about regenerative tourism.  But more than that, it was inspiring to work with people who care so deeply about the place they live, and for the conversation to be about  what it means for a place to thrive,  not just about ‘business’ or today.


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