29 June 2018 - From the desk of

PUBLISHED ON 29/06/2018
29 June 2018 - From the desk of

On Monday, Transdev were excited to share the announcement of New Zealand's first bilingual commuter train service. Our trains now offer announcements in both English and te reo Māori. This initiative by Auckland Transport has brought us closer to using te reo Māori in our everyday lives. Thanks to Peter Louden, Service Planning and Resources Manager and Adam Olszewski, Manager – Performance, Operations for helping with the day’s event!

I also had a good discussion with the Senior Management Team (SMT) about having a just’ safety culture. We started the discussion last year, but understanding what a ‘just safety culture’ actually means is not yet part of our DNA. Some confuse a ‘just’ culture with a ‘no blame’ culture. We need to explore questions such as, “what differentiates ‘reckless’ behaviour from ‘at-risk’ behaviour?” It is important we get this right to prevent future incidents, and keep you, our colleagues and customers safe. We need honest reporting to learn from incidents, treating everyone fairly and having appropriate accountability is part of this.

I had the pleasure of spending a morning with one of the groups who are doing the leadership training. An important part of leading a team is knowing where you want to go and why. This is easier said than done. Managing our day-to-day challenges is often more than enough to fill up anyone’s day, let alone thinking about what needs to happen in two months or two years’ time. In New Zealand, Transdev wants to be a leader in public transport and particularly rail. Why? Because we believe Transdev can empower people to improve their lives by being able to move freely, connecting them to communities and making every journey matter. When our services are on track and run smoothly, people worry less about getting to their exams, visiting their grandchildren, making it on time for a job interview or just meeting others. At the same time, we offer taxpayers value for money. Do you agree? I am happy to hear your thoughts.

Yesterday evening, I attended a presentation by Frances Valintine. She is an education futurist and the Founder and Chair of The Mind Lab by Unitec and Tech Futures Lab. Some interesting things I picked up: this year, NZ will have more millennials than baby boomers; employees no longer want to be locked into nine to five jobs, people seek reward for what they contribute, not the amount of hours they spend in an office; competition is worldwide due to open access and multi-connectedness. And – this is my favourite one – you cannot sit it out! I would be keen to have discussions with you and the Union about what this means for our business. How do we attract and retain talent, offer more flexibility and stay relevant? What does security mean for different generations? How do we include the younger workforce, often with less experience but with a great attitude, into our decision-making? To be honest, I don’t know, but I am looking forward to the challenge.

I wish you all a great weekend.

Ma te wa/Bye for now,


Michel Ladrak
Managing Director

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