Learning to lead

Nine years ago Wellington’s Gareth Jeune was scaling cliff faces, traversing ranges and jumping into the cold waters of Queen Charlotte Sound on his Outward Bound BETA course.

Gareth Jeune

Gareth Jeune at Outward Bound

The BETA course is a custom 16-day Outward Bound course specifically designed to make the experience relevant to the construction industry and its apprentices. The BETA course partners are BCITO, Registered Master Builders and Master Plumbers.
Gareth attended Outward Bound as part of a prize package for winning the regional building Apprentice of the Year title in 2010. While he is not currently working in the construction industry, Gareth’s skills are put to good use in his current role as Senior Health and Safety Advisor with Wellington City Council.
“The transferable skills that have carried into future jobs include working in a diverse team environment, understanding the importance of customer service, connecting to processes like safety and quality to ensure the product or service delivered is of the appropriate standard.
“These skills are just as important to me in my current role, where my focus is on supporting teams that interact with contractors and suppliers to ensure safe and healthy work environments within construction or infrastructure projects."  
“Learning to lead through the mahi of others” was a key learning Gareth took away from his time at Outward Bound.
“I am naturally confident and happy to put my hand up to get stuck into tasks as required. After a few activities, we did a reflection exercise where we provided feedback to each member of the group around their leadership style.
“One very valuable piece of feedback I received was around identifying the moments to step back and support others to lead and by doing so enabling the growth of others. This has stuck with me and has been really valuable to bring into professional and personal settings.”
While Gareth says Outward Bound influenced his career pathway, helping him to refine and develop his leadership skills, the course also helped him in his personal life.
“Outward Bound taught me how to align my priorities to get most out of life. I set some significant life goals while I was in Anakiwa, some of which I've achieved and others are still 20 years away. Some were ‘standard’ like purchasing my first home, travelling, getting married and further study, all of which have eventuated, but I still have a few big goals to reach. I seem to recall making an outrageous suggestion that I would lead the country at some point – we will see how that pans out....!”
Gareth is active in his local community, particularly with hockey and says he is enjoying seeing people in the sporting community getting active again after lockdown. Outside of building up his local hockey club, Gareth is in the early stages of developing his governance career, currently involved in the resurgence of the Wellington Hockey Association.
“I’d most definitely recommend Outward Bound to others. It’s the perfect setting at any stage of life to either hit reset or help those looking to gear up for a new challenge. A lot can be gained from time away from the normal stressors, and with like-minded people in a supportive environment interested in personal development. It was a place where I felt comfortable to truly dream big in life.”

Applications are now open for BCITO's Scholarships for Apprentices to attend a young leaders course at Outward Bound in November 2020 and close on 11 September.

Find out more and apply now

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