Alana Tyrell - HR/Project Manager at Alignz Recruitment

Alana Tyrell
HR/Project Manager at Alignz Recruitment and WPBN Board member
Recruitment and Governance, Waikato 

Kim: Alana’s journey centred on professional development growth, business growth and how that tagged on to her evolving career as a successful and key Pacific business person in governance. 
To walk alongside Alana on her journey as I equipped her with the skills to apply to real-life situations was incredibly rewarding. 

These included capability building around refining contract and tender applications for Ministry of Social Development funding to diversify her offering, how to manage those meetings, understanding the importance of building ongoing business relationships, and managing her evolving role in the governance space while building her confidence as a young leader.

As Alana moved into that governance position, we worked through the professional development processes needed to have a voice in a high-level governance environment. Empowerment was focused on Alana’s leadership and growth development as an emerging leader, building her capacity, giving her bite-sized education pieces and tips and tools as well as making myself available as a trusted and solid sounding board.

She wanted to work with someone with governance experience but also who understood the indigenous space and was outside the whanau and Pacific community. She’s been on a huge journey.

Alana: Kim was referred to me by someone I work closely with on one my network boards in 2018. I work as part of the family business, but I needed someone outside who could guide me in both my management space and governance space.  

I was looking for a mentor at the time and she said that Kim was someone who really helped her on her journey – especially in that area of governance, as that was the area I was transitioning into at the time. 

The person who referred me is someone who I really trusted. So Kim and I had an initial meeting, and we really hit it off.  Right from the outset I felt comfortable, there was no obligation, and just having a “real” talk and not pussy-footing around convinced me that I needed to work with Kim. 

In the family business, I was a manager over-looking three regions, 16 people internally and, as we’re in the labour-hire sector, as many as 200-plus workers at any given time. I’d be the person to trouble-shoot and resolve any issues and for me being young, it was important for me to navigate that space – especially as I was often managing people older than me.  

Kim helped filter all the information that was going on in my head and bring a sense of calm, because she’s ‘been there and done that’ in terms of managing her own teams. I knew I could call Kim and she’d bring a calming presence every time and give me the clarity I needed. 
I’ve been in the family business for ten years now, and when you’re working in the family business you don’t want to leave but you know you need to find things outside, and she’s really helped me navigate what I want to do with an unbiased opinion.  
The biggest benefit in working with Kim has been in governance – in my Board role as part of the Waikato Pacific Business Network (WPBN). Because I was pretty "green” and only 26 at the time, I wanted to understand what my space was and how I could contribute to that.   

The majority of the time I used Kim as a sounding board, ‘Am I going in the right direction?’, ‘Does this make sense?’. I needed someone who could be my mirror, manage my expectations, but also not hold back if I needed to be pulled in line!  

We’ve been working together for a couple of years now and every month we’ll meet up for a good hour or so, and it’s great to have an hour to spend on myself.  
One thing about Kim is that she has plenty of small powerful phrases which she shares, about holding your ground and understanding your value – and they are always in my head! 

She’s very empowering. She really understood the different things I was going through and helped me piece together the puzzle. Kim helped me at a crucial time in my career, to build that bridge as I entered a new phase and gave me a lot more confidence in all spaces.   
I’m often working with high-profile people and I have that confidence around my role and expectations. Kim has a lot of experience on multiple boards and understood what I needed.