Maori Management: Values, Rules and Priorities

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One of the most basic dimensions of both national and organizational cultures which offer guidance on the values and the cultural norms of a particular culture is time. It is part of the silent language that often gives meaning to people and their behavior. The dimension that is used to divide time is what gives the outsiders insights and ability to appreciate and embrace the Maori culture. Several research done have indicated that the factor or the perspective in which time is supported at the national level especially the western, industrialized cultures are very different compared to the culture of the developing, less industrialized cultures (Duff, 1956). It has been revealed that organizational cultures do differ at various levels and if this is so, so does the dimension in time and perspectives.

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Time and organizational culture can be used to inform the international business activities. Countries like New Zealand have got an extensive multicultural center of business such as the Auckland and the Wellington. The two cities offer intriguing possibilities for research into the time dimension. The paper will focus on the cultural differences that will be used to create a distinction between Pakeha and Maori, particularly in the dimension of time and event occurrence.

Any given culture is defined by the dimension of time and event as it provides a culture its unique composite at any level be it the national or the local culture. There are various researchers who deduce that cultures which have got similar geographical regions are more likely to share the same time orientation. In this perception, North America, Western Europe, Australia, Africa and South Pacific Islands constitute one cluster. When a person aims at understanding an individual culture, he or she can result in a smooth cross-cultural interaction which might lead to adoption of behaviors that might be expected. In New Zealand, the merging of the two different culture groups provides a very specific dynamic with regard to time dimension. The Maori social and economic organization was very essential and it consisted of organization of small communities which was organized into three social group including whanau, (family units), hapu, (sub-tribes) and iwi (tribes). For the iwi to be successful and survive, the relationship between it with whanau and the hapu had to be of mutual benefit (Eriksen-Sohos, 1996).

The values that Maori represented were with much preference to the time and event since different social status and authority made sure that the completion of tasks was made according to the right processes rather than the strict time frame. Activities that were held in the Marae or the Maori meeting places gave useful illustrations of how they manifested their values (Hanson & Hanson, 1983). The values remain to be the Maori pride as it serves as a focal point for conducting tribal affairs and events such as meetings (Hui), funerals (tangi), celebrations and political events.

One of the most difficult things is to understand other peoples cultural differences but one has to know it all the same. For someone to fully understand other persons culture, one should live with those people or simply research to know the difference in their culture and appreciate the diversity. When someone works out their beliefs, values and personal biases, then one is able to think on how other persons character might impact the approach in the understanding of the culture.

The research introduces a wide paradigm of the Maori culture in New Zealand. The difference in their culture is so tremendous such that it is significant to acknowledge the values from the cultures. The research will include how the Maori uses their culture and the world view to run their organization and manage their welfares in the political, economic and social point of view. The paper will discuss the cultural values and the management with respect to planning, Organizing, controlling, leading and the importance of the culture with relation to business.

In the article that explained the governance of the Maori, it is clear that the coexisting values and concepts are supposed to be in corporate in the legal systems of New Zealand. The concepts are the Maori and Pakeha. The exploration of how the two values should coexist together is what explains the need to explore different ways for the values and the systems to co- exist together. The article acknowledges that there is a different between cultures and that the differences should be noticed and acknowledged. There are those cultures that will accord a lot of priority and weight to the objective or the application of the rule of law but others accord more objectives to the tradition, the customary laws and the kinship in decision making (Eriksen-Sohos, 1996). The Maori culture gives more priority to the traditional values to contribute to the good management.

Every individual is supposed to uphold and respect the traditions and the values of the Maori culture. The western culture nevertheless, upholds the rule of law. For instance in the Maori culture, the manager is not supposed to dismiss the employee as the employee has got the authority of the employee (Webster, 1998). Nevertheless the manager is supposed to look into the matter and provide a solution. Dismissing the employee in an organization is considered as undermining the culture and the values of traditions. In the western culture however, the employee is subjected to dismissal or being fired.


Management is a factor of production which involves money, machines and materials for marketing and innovation creation. The managers of the organization are mandated to make decision that work towards bettering the management and the performance of the organization. Management in business and organization coordinates the effort of the people and motivate them into achieving the respective goals and objectives by using available resources efficiently and effectively. Management involves different activities in the organization. The different activities are planning, organizing, staffing, leading, directing and controlling. All those activities when handled properly, they contribute to good production and performance of the business.

1.3 Maori Management

Maori organizations are set up in a quite different establishment. Unlike in the western culture whereby the management of the organization is measured by the profit made, the Maori management is quite different. The organizations have got multiple purposes but the main purpose is to balance the financially viability with the social and cultural aspirations (Eriksen-Sohos, 1996). Although the organization might consider measuring themselves against their financial and economic indicators, wealth creation and build up is not the main concern. The foundation of the business in the Maori perspective is build under some fundamentals like: uptake, turanga, tikanga, kaitiakitanga and rangatiratanga (Horn, 2009). Most of the businesses in the Maori are managed under the bottom line of social, cultural, environmental, spiritual and economic goals and are recognized in the organizations mission.

Maori management involves use of values, rules and priorities. The organizations operate under some set of values that distinguish the Maori business from other business. The values include kotahikanga which is referred to as the Maori unity and sharing the sense of belonging (Jentoft, Minde & Nilsen, 2003). The decisions that are made in the organization to identify and work are for the benefit of development. There is the value of tino rangatiratanga which involves self determination, control and ownership whether the determination is personal, hapu, iwi or if it is from the collective point of view. There is also the value of the whanaungatanga which incorporates the ethics of belonging and kinship. In this principle, there is acknowledgement and acceptance of important networks and relationships. In so doing, there is enhancement in development, management and sustainability of good relationships.

Katiakitanga is another value in Maori management which is considered as the guardianship of natural resources. The principle involves the management of the environment and the establishment of a sustainable enterprise. The principle focuses more or less on the management and preserving the resources for the future generations. Wairuatanga or spirituality is a value that is never left out in the management of organization in the Maori culture. Attention and the resources are committed to observing the spiritual protocols (Mikaere, 2009). The services of the tohunga or kaumatua are involved in the concept of enacting a new building within the organization premises.

Manaakitanga or hospitality, generosity, caring and giving should be implemented in the organization. The organization should be able to host and provide for everyone. There should be allocation of resources specifically for the purpose of hospitality. The Whanua is expected to support the function. The organizations also uphold multiple responsibilities in the management and making sure that there is manageable level of accountability (Patterson, 1992). The Maori organizations usually hold to current and the future generations, whanau, hapu or iwi groups. The organization also relates to the particular laws and requirements of Maori management. Identifying cultural values important to the Maori- centered business, means that the ownership and control of the cultural identity are in the industries and enterprises.

It can be identified that the conflict between the Maori and the Non-Maori emerged when Pakeha pushed for resolutions. The Maori on the other hand advocated adhering of protocol that ensures the process is correct and the tribal and the ancestral knowledge is acknowledged and appreciated so that the future generations can follow that example. Maori follows a process and so they require a lot of advice from the kamatua or the elders who are responsible to attending the needs of the current generation and ensuring that the rationale for the present day decisions is consistence with the future generations (Singer, 1946). As much as it is possible to argue that the Maori were compensated at the expense of Pakeha, it is also possible that time and the value placed is important so that the derivation of different perceptions could be looked into. More insights of how each perception of different parties is made can accept tolerance and good will from both sides.

How tangihanga relations to Western management concepts will benefit NZ management practices, Maori and organisations.

Activities that were held on the traditional events such as the meeting (Hui), funerals (tangi), celebrations and political events remained as the Maori focal point for conducting their affairs and upholding their values. The concept and the notion of arriving on time and finishing on time are the main concepts that were relating with the western form of management and thus benefiting New Zealand form of management (Wayne, 2004). They were used in keeping time and upholding protocol in the tangihaha. The fact that tangihaha involved patience so as to finish the events right away in the concept of Maori means that the speaker was given ample time to express all the needs and the flexible agenda (Raymond & McElwee, 1992). The practise allows the Maori to be very patient and it therefore helps in their planning and management of organization.

With the introduction of the pakeha, the Maori tangihaha changed due to the marriage of the European law and colonization through the treaty of Waitangi (Baker, Pipi & Cassidy, 2015). Tangihaha was technically improved from the old version to the new one. Introduction of diseases, war and the legislations law inhibited the practices of the marae and th...

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