Marley New Zealand hit the 60-year milestone in 2019 and we wanted to celebrate at both our Auckland and Christchurch sites while taking the time to recognise the contributions and value each of our colleagues brings to the business.
We’re all proud to be part of the Marley family, and the way we’ve connected over the years has contributed to our sites being the best places to work in New Zealand. For me personally, I remember biking around as a youngster and seeing the original building that started it all, so I can say that my connection to this company goes way back. That’s why celebrating Marley’s history and the ways in which we are connected to the land and each other through this shared history was so important.
The anniversary events at both our Christchurch and Auckland sites took us on a journey through time, but the focus was largely on the people. We invited a few key former colleagues to join in the celebrations, and honoured a number of our current long-serving employees with touching presentations. A number of people also shared their own stories, memories and photographs of Marley, which really personalised the celebrations in a way that everyone appreciated.
Here at our Auckland site, we also took part in a ceremony to thank three of our employees who helped a colleague when he experienced a serious medical event while at work. This colleague’s family was also on hand and were able to express their thanks and appreciation to the individuals who had rushed to the aid of their loved one.
Needless to say, it was an emotional celebration that reinforced the fact that we are a family at Marley. This connection was made even more tangible when each of us received a Pounamu (Greenstone) pendant. Pounamu is very culturally significant in New Zealand – it represents the connection between people, the land, water and the country, and is traditionally given as a gift to family and close friends. The Marley Auckland site resides on land originating from the Waikato Tainui iwi (tribe) and our local sub tribe is Ngati Tamaoho.
A local Kaumātua (a respected Māori tribal elder) was on-site to bless each of these Taonga (a Māori word that means treasured possession) during a traditional ceremony before giving one to each employee. This personally gave me a great sense of Mana (pride) in being part of the Marley Whanau (family) and its long history.
Celebrating this milestone together was an opportunity like no other to recognise the people within our organisation, strengthen our internal relationships and show appreciation for everyone’s contributions, no matter their function. As strong as our connections to each other were before celebrating Marley’s 60-year anniversary, we came out of it even closer, and are ready to make year 61 the best one yet!