Te Ao Māori

Te Ao Māori denotes the Māori World. While simple in definition, it is rich in meaning and vast in breadth and depth.

We work alongside organisations to help mobilise the Māori workforce

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Ehara taku toa i te toa takitahi, engari he toa takitini

 - My success is not mine alone, it is the success of the collective -

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Connecting with Māori

On its 20th anniversary, The Icehouse is on a greater journey to more authentically connect with the Māori worldview in line with the people of Aotearoa. The rise in Te Reo and a more inclusive appreciation of Aotearoa’s history and the implications of New Zealand’s colonial past, are valued by The Icehouse and recognised as long overdue moves in a right and rich direction.

The blended universe that was the intent of Te Tiriti at the beginning was encapsulated and symbolised by the blended threshold of land and sea in the place where The Icehouse has operated from the start, the old Mechanics Bay, where Māori and Pākeha first came together to conduct trade and enterprise vital to early Auckland’s survival. This ‘bond’ is part of our history, and one of which we should be proud.  

We understand and participate in a worldview that has implications for entrepreneurs whose success will be measured by more than wealth and we work alongside organisations to help empower the Maori workforce.

A priority for us is to provide a bridge for entrepreneurial Māori and Pākeha, as well as other communities, entrepreneurs and innovators, so that each can learn from the best the other has to offer; to play in the space in-between, to discover new ways of doing business in an innovative, socially aware and environmentally sustainable way by understanding the worldviews of others.

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Māori Leadership Development Cadetship

In association with Te Puni Kōkiri and The Icehouse


We are pleased to announce the 2023 cadetships.
Poipoia te kākano kia puāwai
Nurture the seed and it will grow

In 2021, The Icehouse received support from Te Puni Kōkiri (the Ministry for Māori Development) to offer Leadership Development Cadetships. Cadetships enable kaitono (employers) to succeed by nurturing the development of their kaimahi Māori (staff).

The programme supports kaitono to provide the opportunity for kaimahi Māori of all ages and career stages across a range of industries to achieve their potential. Kaimahi are supported to develop skills and confidence to be able to take on more senior roles, extend their career paths and boost workforce development for their employer.

An important part of the programme is that it celebrates te ao Māori and the strength it holds for personal development. The programme’s ongoing success comes down to treating people with mana so that they can achieve their highest potential for themselves and their whānau.

These new cadetships have been carefully curated to:

  • Support the development of a skilled, productive and resilient Māori workforce and to promote more productive and connected businesses
  • Support structured and tailored mentoring, training and development for Māori staff in permanent roles

What is covered and how much is the cadetship?

The Cadetship provides a contribution of up to $10,000 per recipient for approved programmes delivered by The Icehouse such as the Owner Manager Programme, Leadership Development Programme, and Taking Your Business Forward Programme, supported with one-to-one coaching as appropriate. The Cadetship contribution may also be used for Business Coaching and Advisory with an Icehouse Coach.

Your Icehouse Customer Growth Partner will work with you and your employer to determine the best path for you. 

Are there any obligations that go with the cadetship?


  • There is a minimum investment of $4,960 paid toward the approved programmes delivered by The Icehouse in addition to the cadetship amount. This amount could be greater depending on the programme you choose.
  • Permanent employment of the recipient for at least six months after receipt of the cadetship.
  • Provide profile information such as age, iwi affiliation, gender, location, skills/qualifications on entry and any qualifications currently being studied.
  • Agree that the recipients profile, learning programme and progress reports can be shared with Te Puni Kōkiri. Note this information will be anonymous i.e. without recipients name.


Are there any eligibility criteria?

Potential cadets must:

  • Have Māori whakapapa.

We encourage applicants to submit their applications as soon as possible to have the greatest chance of securing a cadetship.

About the Te Puni Kōkiri Cadetships programme

Te Puni Kōkiri is the Government’s principal policy advisor on Māori wellbeing and development.

The Cadetships programme was established in 2010 to support kaitono to develop, mentor and train their permanent Māori staff at all career stages into higher-skilled roles.

Over 1,300 cadets will be supported in the 2022-2023 financial year, building on the more than 5,000 cadets and 400 employers who have already participated in the Cadetships programme. 

Further information about Cadetships is on the Te Puni Kōkiri website.


Te Kaa
Māori Cultural Competency

New Zealand’s rich Māori culture gives it a point of difference on a global stage, and now, more than ever New Zealand businesses are seeking to harness its uniqueness.


It’s vital that we enhance our cultural competence at The Icehouse, so many of our staff have immersed themselves in Te Kaa's engaging and enriching programmes that have impacted on how they are able to consider Māori culture within decision making processes, policies and procedures and strengthened the ability to connect with Māori colleagues and clients.

Our journey has only just begun.

The Course

Tailored towards the busy corporate sector, the programme provides focus on how Māori culture is relevant to us as individuals and the businesses we support.

We will continue to update with further special initiatives and events for The Icehouse, our network, coworking space and wider community.