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  • The best leaders are not interested in who is right, but
    what is right

    “Identifying and attracting leaders requires a thorough understanding of different industries and functions, and a keen sense of the right ‘fit’ of objectives, people and culture,” says Graeme Sandri, director of SandriWalsh. The right executive can make or break your business. “I know how high the stakes are for your business. I can help you find the right leaders and increase the performance of your business.”

    Graeme Sandri, Director
  • New Zealand – a great place for entrepreneurship

    “In the 2013 Doing Business report, the World Bank ranked New Zealand number one in the world for ‘Starting a business’. Tony Walsh, director of SandriWalsh, knows what it takes to attract leaders with the drive and determination to start a business or grow a business. “I can help you search the best of New Zealand (and the world) to find the right directors and a chief executive to create that vision, and a senior leadership team that can bring that vision to life and deliver results.”

    Tony Walsh, Director




The quality of a company’s board is an important evaluation factor
for success


The quality of a company’s board is an important evaluation factor for success

Balancing short-term pressures and longer-term considerations, stakeholder interests and a company’s own requirements is no easy task. Our clients are looking for directors with entrepreneurial drive, balanced with a prudent perspective to monitor progress and manage risks.

We need directors to provide leadership, strategy and direction to some of New Zealand’s most dynamic businesses. Talk to us about what’s right for you.



Leadership is about inspiring the team to achieve more than they could as individuals


Leadership is about inspiring the team to achieve more than they could as individuals

Finding those leaders is what we do. The leaders who dream big and deliver results. Leaders with a track record for success built on hard work and team effort. They’re busy getting on with what they do, not necessarily looking for their next move. That’s where we come in – we find them, we inspire them and get them excited about you.

Talk to us about finding (and developing) your next top leaders.



To win, you have to believe you can do it


To win, you have to believe you can do it

In a forest of trees, there are mighty Totara’s out there. Our job is to help you find them. A CEO has to be a leader, not a pied piper. Entrepreneurs are pied pipers. They play seductive melodies and entice people into following them. Leadership is different. It calls for keeping a watchful eye on the business and making sure everyone understands what must get done. And creating a sense of urgency about that.

We can help you find that special CEO that can problem solve and see around corners - that is, to recognise well in advance what has to be done for the good of the business - so that the company is always leading the industry rather than trying to catch up. And no CEO can do this alone – it takes a committed leadership team. We can find the right team to drive change.



Help where you most need it


Help where you most need it

We can help you deploy interim management leadership or consulting specialists to effect your most critical change and transformation business initiatives

We often find our clients use this staffing strategy for high impact and flexibility.



General Manager Finance, Quality & Systems


Here is a superb opportunity for you to utilise your well-honed leadership skills and commercial acumen in a key role, as part of the Executive Management team. Further to the appeal is that you will do so within/across a unique organisation that adds significant value to a substantial cross section at the core of NZ’s economy.
As the title suggests, this is not ‘just a CFO.’ You will own other key responsibilities akin to a GM Corporate Services, so have the opportunity to utilise the broader capabilities you have developed, possibly including management of IT. However, the key requirement for the latter, is the “high level” management and project management of technology programmes to ensure they are delivering what is actually required and when required. You do not need to be a technologist, by any stretch.
At the core of the role though, is a strong background in accounting, to a similar level. The organisation is led by a highly entrepreneurial and future focused CEO who continues to deliver successful, wide ranging initiatives. While your experience will have developed an inherent ability to measure risk, you will be expected to possess a proactive approach, using your skills to develop the financial and technical frameworks that will assist in the assessment, realisation of potential, and implementation of these programmes.
Other critical experience includes:

  • Proven leadership of diverse teams to the delivery of outcomes, and positive engagement across the business, is non-negotiable.
  • Strong exposure to Board level, and in particular, the technical strength to present confidently and accurately to the Risk and Audit Committee.
  • While not critical, CA or equivalent qualification, would be advantageous.

This role will most definitely not suit someone who likes the status quo and expects their responsibilities to be finite and structured. The environment and market opportunities are far too dynamic for that, so we need someone who is excited by challenge and wants to make a broad commercial contribution.


Group Manager, People and Capability


In this large and complex government organisation, you will lead the People and Capability business unit with the goal of shifting the organisations culture, leadership and capabilities, contributing to the achievement of its strategic goals through being “people powered” and “one team”. 

We make no secret that the challenge is significant. However, development of people management frameworks and systems, and your strategic and operational human resources advice, go a long way to their achieving the vision of being a trusted leader within their sector.

With a sizeable team to lead and build, your creativity will be maximized as with limited budget, you will be responsible for the delivery of people strategies that enable the attraction, retention and development of an energised and engaged workforce committed to the organisation's success and the achievement of its strategic objectives. 

You will also have the opportunity to develop sustainable organisational development initiatives and policies that build people capability and performance, grow engagement and strengthen leadership and management e.g. talent and capability related programmes and remuneration and performance frameworks. 

Additionally, you will oversee the provision of human resources and payroll systems, support and advise the business, ensuring that the Executive Leadership Team and senior managers are provided with timely and best practice human resources tools, services and accurate advice, to ensure legislative requirements are met. 

You will bring proven experience in successfully leading people strategies to achieve organisational culture and performance effectiveness for large, complex organisations.

Through your superior relationship and well developed influencing skills, you will have demonstrated in your career success, contribution at a strategic level to a strong, cohesive, client-focused executive team. 


Head of Digital Capability & Channels

Your predecessor has done a superb job in setting the foundations. Now, you have the opportunity to build upon those.  

This is a high profile, multi-faceted leadership role where you will further develop and implement strategies that will transform a predominately traditional channels approach into one that is leading edge and digitally driven. However, as the Deputy Chief Executive stated, never lose sight of the compelling reason for developing and implementing these changes, is to enhance the services and engagement that the customer experiences.

For all intents and purposes, the organisation is “in the early phases” in terms of its digital delivery capability. As such, while the aforementioned foundations are in place, this is very much a greenfield scenario in relation to their digital maturity. With substantial resources committed to this development, you have a unique opportunity to make a significantly positive impact on the New Zealand landscape.
Ideally, you will have the unique combination of exposure to traditional call centre environments, alongside, or transitioned to, the development and utilisation of digital service channels. We are aware that your exposure may have come from a variety of experiences, not necessarily “linear” by design.
You must also have the following key characteristics:

  • Visionary strategic and functional leadership skills;
  • Always have the customer at the centre of the initiatives you drive, ensuring all changes and developments enhance the customer experience;
  • Proven leadership of large teams, having delivered operational and cultural excellence
  • Superior relationship management skills, with the ability to effectively work across a large and complex organisation to achieve aligned goals and outcomes.  

The successful candidate must be based in Wellington, with critical staff and key stakeholder relationships resident here.


Export Sales Manager


Having consolidated a number of divisions, this unique opportunity presents to develop strategy and business development plans in order to maximize the potential of the organisations broad product offerings. Already a fixture in these markets, this ‘unitary’ approach will undoubtedly create greater opportunities to expand and add value through these expanded capabilities.
While your commercial acumen will be fully utilised and challenged, your relationship management skills must be nothing short of outstanding. There are myriad ‘stakeholders’ who will be involved in decision making, both directly and through influence. Close knit and interwoven communities that still have particularly strong ties and influence as far afield as New Zealand, will require you to understand the nature of those. You will therefore need to develop relationships with commercial, governmental  and even influential social and community groups and individuals, near and far, in order to be truly effective in unearthing the substantial opportunities that do exist.
With compliance now in place across the island markets, they have developed standards that only enhance product quality adherence, which is already proving positive for NZ suppliers.
Not only is there opportunity for product placement, but also the utilisation of total solutions through engaging with NZ based fabricators to produce and supply “end product” that is not able to be engineered/manufactured in the local environment.
In summary, this opportunity will appeal to sales professionals who can:

  • Develop tailored business plans that deliver the requisite outcomes.
  • Show the ability to operate effectively across multi-tiered and multi-faceted customer and influencer environments
  • Create value for the customer, through understanding their broader requirements and using direct and 3rd parties in order to deliver to those.
  • Operate effectively and to some degree, autonomously, in unique market environment albeit, with the full backing and resources of a substantial market leader.

There is no question of the opportunity for major growth in these markets, for the right person, with the right motivation, who wants to take genuine ownership of a market.


Key Account Managers (x3)


A great opportunity for you to secure one of these key account management roles, with what we can confidently describe as one of the major "players" in the New Zealand market. This is particularly so given the all-encompassing span of product offerings, and the value for customers that can be derived from those offerings.

You will have the opportunity to "own" customer relationships, maximising the inherent commercial opportunities from that broad array of customer groups. Primarily, your customer base will span the broader Engineering and Manufacturing entities across the Auckland region. Mostly, these are existing customers, but still with major potential for growth. The motivation and determination to also grow "your business" into new customers, would unquestionably bring reward.

With major national and local initiatives in place, they are determined to genuinely increase the value added to customers; create a united and focused sales team; and through superior leadership, ensure those teams have the backing and tools to succeed.

While a background in an engineering or manufacturing environment would be beneficial, the critical experience you will bring will be:

  • Superior relationship building, communication and negotiation skills, that have brought tangible and measureable results.
  • Proven B2B sales success in a competitive market.
  • Outstanding commercial acumen, able to develop a complete picture of your customers business, with a solutions focused passion that delivers value across those "wider" requirements.


Fundraising Manager


A key role in a quintessentially Wellington organisation that is unquestionably a core part of the local community. The Fundraising Manager is ultimately responsible for raising money to help finance the operations of the Community Services division of The Mission, (and to a lesser extent its subsidiary companies) and ensuring the effective delivery of all aspects of the fundraising function.
The Wellington City Mission has been helping those most in need throughout the Greater Wellington region for over 110 years. The Mission prides itself on being open to anyone who needs assistance, regardless of religious belief, age, ethnicity or social background. The Mission programmes assist a range of people living in Greater Wellington’s communities.
As a key member of the management team, the Fundraising Manager participates in and contributes to the leadership and management of Wellington City Mission, and the development and implementation of the organisation’s fundraising strategy, including the marketing and communications activities that contribute to the fundraising strategy delivery.
This is an exciting chance to continue to grow the brand awareness, and resulting fundraising, of Wellington City Mission through innovation, a connection to Wellington stakeholders, and responsible, ethical, and relevant multi-channel fundraising.
There is an opportunity for this role to be driven by an expert in best practice fundraising and marketing, ideally someone knowledgeable with Wellington commercial and community networks, who knows how to appropriately communicate directly with the donor database, including discerning channel selection, but also the business network and trusts and grant organisations.
Teamwork is critical for this role, both within the funding team, but also in building strong and positive relationships with the other stakeholders in the Wellington City Mission organisation, both at head office and across the region in front-line roles and with suppliers. An ability to engage positively and confidently with the board is critical.
Specifically, you will have:

  • Demonstrated fundraising experience, or in a related, relevant area, preferably including experience in the fundraising sector
  • Empathy for the cause, or at least can apply empathy to the cause at hand and the stakeholders involved.
  • An ability to ‘close the deal’, as is initiative and innovation. Strong written and presentation skills will be considered fundamental.
  • A relevant tertiary qualification, and core computing skills including donor database experience. A full NZ drivers licence is also required.


Principal Advisor - Strategy


This newly developed role has a broad mandate to research and then develop insights that will create broader understanding and actionable policy for the organisation to act upon.

The subject matter is far reaching, but with an undoubted impact on the broader environmental environment across New Zealand. As a result, you will be at the front end of key issues and opportunities for change that can come from the outcomes you deliver. 

The role will appeal to a professional who has a broad aspect in their “view of the world.” This may have been developed from a background in economics or similar, seeing the wider implications of scenarios and creating tangible insights from that comprehension.


Research Team Leader - 'Better Buildings'


While not needing to be a subject matter expert, you will possess superior leadership skills, coaching and mentoring individuals and teams to deliver high performance outcomes, alongside the genuine ability to contribute at a "strategic" level.

The core purpose of this position is to lead a team of highly skilled and qualified researchers/subject matter experts that contribute to the delivery of this highly respected organisations 'industry good research' and knowledge dissemination activities.



Team Talk

Chief Executive


Chief Executive

SandriWalsh worked exclusively with the TeamTalk Chair and Board to identify quality candidates for this critical role, resulting in the appointment of Andrew Miller to the position.

Pharmacy Guild
of New Zealand

Chief Executive

Pharmacy Guild of New Zealand

Chief Executive

SandriWalsh were appointed the exclusive search agents for this critical assignment.  Advocacy for the members was a key focus for this critical role, resulting in the appointment of Andrew Gauldin to the position.

New Zealand
Racing Board

Executive Leadership Team

New Zealand Racing Board

Executive Leadership Team

With the appointment of John Allen as CEO in March 2015, SandriWalsh were appointment to work exclusively with John to identify and appoint a number of his new senior leadership team.  In all, five critical General Manager positions (Customer, Services, Finance, People and Broadcasting) were appointed through our process.

of Health

Executive Leadership Team

Ministry of Health

Executive Leadership Team

The Ministry embarked on a transformational journey that would see them step up and work more closely with the health and disability sector.  To lead through the transformational change required, the Director-General appointed SandriWalsh to work exclusively with him to identify a strong, highly effective Executive team, with the right accountabilities, capabilities and mind-set, that opts into the challenge of creating sustainable change.  We are proud of the work undertaken both nationally and internationally to help identify and appoint eight new Tier 2 positions. 


Executive Leadership Team

The CEO requested SandriWalsh to assist in the identification of appropriate leadership talent that will assist her in implementing a new organisational strategy, assist in realigning and enhancing BRANZ’s capability, and significantly contribute to the achievement of both organisational and industry goals. Roles successfully recruited were General Manager Corporate Services, General Manager Industry Research, General Manager Corporate Services and Human Resources Manager.

Commerce Commission

General Manager Competition

This role had substantial breadth in terms of subject matter and market(s) involvement, across New Zealand. It involved the management of two key areas, those being Competition and Consumer, at all levels and in all markets. With a responsibility for a team of 90 across a number of key disciplines, including Legal, Economics, Investigation and Advocacy it required a leader with a proven capability across multi-discipline teams. Given the person will be developing, managing and further developing relationships with key stakeholders, this knowledge was required in terms of credibility, both external and internal. Through our search process, we were pleased to be able to identify Antonia Horrocks, a New Zealander based in London, to agree to come back to New Zealand to take up the role.

NZ Rugby

Chief Financial Officer

Within an organisation at the core of 'NZ Inc,' this rare opportunity was presented for SandriWalsh to identify  a highly qualified CFO to work closely with the CEO and be expected to take a critical leadership role across the Senior Management Group in a complex commercial organisation. Through a thorough search process, we were thrilled to assist with the appointment of Nicky Nicol who returned to New Zealand after a long period of time in Australia with BP.

Industry Training

Chief Executive

The Industry Training Federation (ITF) represents all of New Zealand's Industry Training Organisations (ITOs) and provides the collective voice of sectors' and industries' vocational education and training needs. The role of CEO was to advise and provide “intelligence” to the Council/Board re what is happening at the highest levels so that they are aware of the impacts on their businesses and are able to formulate strategy relevant to their sectors. Another key part of the role is to feed opportunities to the CEO’s of the various ITO's, requiring them to have a strong level of confidence in the CEO and the credibility of the information supplied, as it will often have a significant bearing on their own decision-making.  Josh Williams was appointed to the role.

FairWay Resolution

General Manager Strategy & Finance

'Unique' is a word that genuinely applies to Fairway Resolution, given that they are one of the few organisations of their kind in New Zealand, that also holds a rare place in the global market with a highly specialised area of expertise.  Having restructured for the future and having strategies in place in order to achieve their goals they recognised that strategy is an ever evolving business foundation and this role will have responsibility for ensuring their organisational strategies are constantly revisited, changed and developed in order to retain their market place effectiveness and achieve growth targets.  Murray Pugh was appointed to the role following our search process.  Murray bought the right mixture of skills to this role which included his time with NZ Post, as CEO of Stephenson & Turner Architects.

Department of Corrections

Director Property

Steel & Tube
Holdings Ltd

General Manager Infrastructure

Accident Compensation Corporation

Head of Provider Service Delivery


SandriWalsh Premises

Level 10, 342 Lambton Quay (thru AMI Plaza)
P.O. Box 25-594, Featherston St, Wellington 6146
Ph: +64 (0) 4 978 1824


We are an executive search and recruitment consultancy, specialising at the top end of the market. With Graeme and Tony having a combined fifty plus years of experience, we have been instrumental in helping hundreds of New Zealand clients build leadership capability.

We are part of the Taplow Group - an International Executive Search and Human Capital Company with 120+ Consultants in 28 International Locations around the world.

We build long term relationships with our clients. We’re in it for the long haul and we work in partnership with our clients to help them bring their vision to life.

We help raise productivity by finding the right leaders to help businesses like yours grow and thrive. Talk to us and together we’ll find what’s right for you.