Close
 

Reaching for the stars: Kmart's Teneile Patea on building careers

  • News
  • July 25, 2016
  • Sarah Dunn
Reaching for the stars: Kmart's Teneile Patea on building careers

What Patea now describes as “young love” had made her a mother at just 18. Then based in Hawke’s Bay, she took on a part-time role at the local Kmart outlet to support her family – daughter Paris Tahau, now aged 10, and son Kaise Tahau, six.

Patea enjoyed her work there, but it was the birth of Kaise which prompted her to reassess her career. Patea says that as she matured, she realised she wanted to be a role model for her children: “As I started to grow as a woman and find myself, I wanted my children to perceive me in a positive light and be proud of me.”

Not only did Patea set ambitious goals, she shared them with Kmart’s HR department. She was already receiving strong support from her mentors, but the next step was to place herself closer to the action.

“Obviously, Hawke’s Bay is a little country town, and I told HR that Auckland is where I wanted to be. It’s about building a network, stepping out,” Patea says. “I decided what I wanted and I went bold.”

The move did come at a price, however. A decision was made to leave her children in Hawke’s Bay with their father’s family so that Patea could chase her dreams. The family were happy to support Patea this way, she says, and offered her children a secure, stable home environment.

“If it wasn’t for them all urging me to grab that opportunity, I wouldn’t be where I am today.”

She continues to have a good relationship with her former partner, who has now welcomed Paris and Kaise into the family he has started with a new partner.

“I did it for myself, but they were my drive,” Patea says.

Now store manager at Kmart Botany, Patea has a chance to give back that support through mentoring others. She favours a management style which emphasises communication and respect, and says the work she puts into connecting with her staff means her youth is no barrier when it comes to managing others.

“Valuing them as people means I get along great with the older generation.”

Kmart’s corporate structure means that each store’s policies and procedures are set by head office, but store managers determine the culture in their outlets. Patea speaks of emphasising a culture which prizes openness, honesty, respect, reward and recognition.

Asked if there’s anything in the retail world she would like to see changing, Patea says gender equality at senior level is a big deal. In the early days of her casual employment at Kmart, she says, there were only two female store managers in the whole of the company’s New Zealand network. Initiatives like the ‘women in leadership’ programme Patea attended through Kmart have helped to change this situation.

“Today, there’s a good mix, and there’s a great pool of up-and-coming female stars,” says Patea. “It’s about women feeling empowered to step forward.”

Rapid career progression in retail is about setting goals and making them known, Patea says. Self-promotion goes against the grain of many New Zealanders, Patea says, but “putting yourself on show” is part of her recipe for success.

“It’s about getting aggressive, doing the hard work and backing yourself.”

Patea’s next goal is deceptively simple: she wants to see the staff she’s trained reach their professional potential, and for her Botany store to deliver a perfect day. Some say perfection is an impossible goal in retail, but then again, they probably haven’t met Patea.

This story originally appeared in NZRetail magazine issue 744 June / July 2016. It was sponsored by Westpac.

This is a community discussion forum. Comment is free but please respect our rules:

  1. Don’t be abusive or use sweary type words
  2. Don’t break the law: libel, slander and defamatory comments are forbidden
  3. Don’t resort to name-calling, mean-spiritedness, or slagging off
  4. Don’t pretend to be someone else.

If we find you doing these things, your comments will be edited without recourse and you may be asked to go away and reconsider your actions.
We respect the right to free speech and anonymous comments. Don’t abuse the privilege.

 
Design

Pams Pantry: The groundbreaking convenience store shaking up rural Canterbury

Dairies have a special place in the hearts of heartland New Zealanders, but now there’s a new format in town.

 
 
News

Diamonds in a rhinestone world: How jewellers are holding fast

Pricier products from retail’s apparel segment are often described as an ‘investment purchase’, but finance professionals would disagree on most counts – except when it ...

 
 

Come and celebrate our industry with the who’s who of retail

  • News
  • September 19, 2019
  • The Register team
Come and celebrate our industry with the who’s who of retail

Our Gem Retail Hotlist is about celebrating the vitality and innovation of New Zealand’s retail sector. Get your free ticket and join our industry’s top retailers for the networking event of the year.

Read more
 

Social scoreboard

Zavy and The Register have worked together to create a scoreboard that compares how the top 25 traditional media advertising spenders in New Zealand have performed on social media over the past 30 days, updated in real time.

 
topics
Concept to closet
Business coverage of New Zealand Fashion Week.
Regional rollercoaster
What does retail look like in 2019 for ...
Town centres
A positive retail environment over the past 12 ...
Amazon Arrival
Keeping up with all things Amazon as it ...
The Retail Yearbook 2017
As we battle our way through the busiest ...
The future is bright
We spoke with four retailers in their twenties ...
Hospitality enhancing retail
Some think food and integrated hospitality offerings will ...
Spotlight on signage
At first glance, the humble in-store sign might ...
Red Awards 2016
The Red Awards for retail interior design celebrate ...
Auckland Unitary Plan
Auckland is changing. The Unitary Plan will decide ...
How to open a store
Sarah Dunn considers what it would take to ...
All things to all people
Kiwi retailers share their omnichannel strategies.
Rising stars
Retail's top young achievers.
Delivering on your promises
The sale isn't over until your item is ...
Retail in heartland New Zealand
Retailers keep the regions pumping, but how strong ...
Sisterhood
Women in retail help one another. We spoke ...
The changing face of retail
Shifting demographics are creating big changes in New ...
The retail yearbook
With the help of experts in the retail ...
Retail rogues
We put the spotlight on staff training. Jai ...
Here come the giants
Topshop has arrived in Auckland’s CBD, David Jones ...
From retail to e-tail
Ecommerce has become part of the way mainstream ...
Loyalty in the digital age
How are retailers maintaining loyalty? Sarah Dunn, Elly ...
Window shopping: A spotlight on social media
Sarah Dunn and Elly Strang look at how ...
The Innovators | In partnership with Spark Business
Technology is rapidly changing the retail industry as ...
 

The simple excitement of inflatable advertising

  • News
  • September 17, 2019
  • Courtney Devereux
The simple excitement of inflatable advertising

Our advertising landscape continues to rotate around the growth of digital and how digital can be used to further capture the attention of viewers.Yet there is one type of adverting so simple, so primal, so no-nonsense that even in this computer run society it has survived. We’re talking here, about inflatable, or balloon, advertising.

Read more
 
 
News

Tourism’s changing landscape

When we last looked at tourism back in 2016, the general vibe was positive. Smaller town retailers were starting to again hear the hum of ...

 

Selling memories in the tourist market

  • Opinion
  • September 17, 2019
  • Sarah Dunn
Selling memories in the tourist market

NZ Retail editor and associate publisher Sarah Dunn invites retailers to consider the real significance of souvenirs: Tourists aren't just buying products, but keepsakes that carry their memories of a great holiday.

Read more
 
Next page
Results for
Topics
Jobs
About us.

The Register provides essential industry news and intelligence, updated daily. And the digital newsletter delivers the latest news to your inbox twice a week — for free!

©2009–2015 Tangible Media. All rights reserved.
Use of this site constitutes acceptance of our Privacy policy.

Advertise
The Register

editor@theregister.co.nz

Content marketing/advertising? Email anita.hayhoe@icg.co.nz or call 022 639 3004

View Media Kit

}