As part of its process of development and accountability, members of the NZRL management team are travelling around the country presenting the Game Plan update at a series of meetings open to anyone with an interest in Rugby League.
The first for the year took place in Whangarei on Monday night and was presented by the NZRL’s General Manager High Performance Tony Kemp, who was joined by recently appointed Rugby League Northland Zone GM Alex Smits.
The ‘Game Plan’ is the NZRL’s five year Strategic Plan and each quarter the organisation measures itself against the plan and reports on what it has achieved, what is still a work in progress and what is yet to be done. Results are measured in a number of ways including outside statistics, its own internal reporting structure, and feedback from stakeholders. Nine core elements, drawn as jigsaw puzzle pieces, show progress by colour – red for very poor, orange for making progress and green for have met stated goals and continuing to maintain them.
Alex Smits said of the Northland meeting, “The presentation was very well received and it was great to see representatives of our sponsors NorthTec and the local RST joining league supporters and local media in the audience. It was also a real positive to see some of the old faces from the area coming along to hear about what’s happening now. “
Ian Swindells of NorthTec said he’d been very impressed with Tony’s presentation, which he’d found extremely informative and well worth his time. He said, “Jim and Tony and the NZRL management team have obviously done an excellent job. It’s a wonderful story for any organisation which is trying to turn things around. I am now thinking about ways in which our organisation can benefit from this story and whether we can maybe involve Jim or Tony in some sort of mentoring.
“As the manager of a tertiary institution, one which has been partnered with Rugby League in Northland for a while, it’s really helpful to get some context of what’s been happening at NZRL and the aspirations for the game in the regions. I was very impressed and really glad I’d come along.”
Jason Hannah, a Community Sports Advisor with Sport Northland, agreed with Ian’s comments saying,”It was great to see Rugby League in such a positive light after the publicity it has received in the past. It’s obviously so much more professional than in past years and having a presenter people can identify with, like Tony Kemp, a familiar face, was great as people know him with his Kiwis experience and that made a difference.”
Jason says the high points for him were seeing how Rugby League relates to other sports, its progress and how the changes are obviously improving the sport. He concludes “The other thing I found really helpful was the jigsaw puzzle, I’m a very visual person and to see the nine puzzle pieces and the colour coding made it really obvious ‘this is where we’re going and this is what we’re trying to achieve’.”
Game Plan update meetings are being held around the country over the next few weeks and details of these will be posted on the NZRL website as they come to hand.