Melanie has many years of experience in creative projects, including journal publication, magazine redesign, complex international filming shoots, website production, and creating and running events. She performs well under the pressure of long work hours with limited budgets, while maintaining an upbeat communication style and a good sense of humour. As an award-winning writer, Melanie is passionate about putting effective word use at the heart of all clear communication.
As a business director, Melanie understands the pressure to deliver products and programmes on time, to budget, with strategies that create meaningful change to drive organisations forward. She is currently director of Hagley Writers’ Institute – one of New Zealand’s most highly respected adult creative writing programmes, which is going from strength to strength under her leadership.
Her key skills include building rapport within groups and teams, goal setting in and out of the workplace, teaching across a broad range of subjects, and mentoring. She has special expertise in explaining complex topics in a way that is easily understood, and in motivating students to bring out the best of their capabilities. She has extensive teaching experience in the workplace and in educational settings, including at a tertiary level. In her teaching, she is guided by the Māori principal of āko – the reciprocal learning that occurs between student and teacher – and she encourages questions and healthy discussions in her learning sessions. Her students value her open, collegiate style and the mutual trust and affinity she helps create within groups.
A lifelong learner, Melanie is always looking for opportunities to expand her own knowledge and skill base. With an education that spans the sciences, arts and business, Melanie has a high level of understanding across a wide range of disciplines. She is a voracious reader across fiction, non-fiction, poetry and academic texts, and she values the open-mindedness that reading brings.
When she’s not tutoring, running projects, or writing, you can find Melanie out in the wilderness, hiking, biking, running and kayaking. A keen adventurer, Melanie is always planning her next trip, preferably somewhere way off the beaten track.