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Vic Crone: Running for Revolution

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Vic Crone recently gave a public lecture as part of the Centre for Innovation and Entrepreneurship’s Unleash Your Potential Speaker Series. The series aims to bring to the stage innovators and entrepreneurs from a diverse range of backgrounds to inspire, provoke and catalyse. Vic’s lecture gave the public the opportunity to gain insight into her vision for the future, and the many learnings from her past.

Vic Crone grew up believing she could do it all. The division of tasks into male and female didn’t exist in her mind, something that would be really important in the development of her career in the male dominated tech space.

“Your circumstances shape you” says Vic “what my parents taught me was the value of learning, and the value of teamwork, and that’s something that I’ve carried right throughout my career.”

Vic laughs as she explains that there are no claims to fame in her lineage “I’m Mick Jagger’s eighth cousin – that’s it.” Both her parents grew up in state houses and she grew up in a family without a lot of money. However there was a strong belief in the value of education as a route to success so Vic went to university even though she “didn’t really have any idea what to do”.

After completing a Masters she decided that it was time to stop studying and move into the workforce and joined Telecom. With her father as her role model she spent 18 years at Telecom starting as an analyst and getting to an executive position.

And then “I realised the world’s changing and this whole thing of being with one company for life, that’s all gone. So there was no way that I wanted to continue that journey”. Her next move was to innovative accounting software company Xero where she was managing director.

Vic says that she has “always just jumped in without thinking about it too much”. An approach that she has applied to everything from the deep end of a swimming pool at age two to running for the Auckland mayoralty. “Nothing great is achieved in your comfort zone” she says “the best work that I have ever achieved has been when I’ve shoved myself out of it literally running, jumping, and leaping”.

One of the challenges for people in the future Vic explains, will be navigating the future nature of work. Careers will no longer be something that progresses linearly and the skills needed will be very different to those needed today.

“Lifelong learning and how you achieve that is one of the biggest things that our country can start to talk about. If you don’t have that lifelong learning you won’t get through the next 20 years in terms of careers and businesses.”

“You’ve got to be curious and have courage to question the status quo, and don’t be put off by people who say no. Commitment to overcome the challenges is the message.”

To move forward and embrace the future successfully will need loyal and winning teams driven by a strong sense of purpose. Vic explains that to create teams like that is down to three things “the head, the hand, and the heart. So it’s what are you doing, how do you do it, and why you do it. And when you put those three things together and you can create some incredible teams.”

She is passionate about New Zealand growing and developing as an innovative and entrepreneurial country. Observing the development of smart cities in other countries was a driver in Vic running for the Auckland mayoralty. From these observations she believes that we need is to be proactive in investing in the technologies of the future such as driverless cars and new food sources.

One key thing holding New Zealand back as a country, Vic says, is our attitude to failure and success. “We’ve got to lift the ambition of our country. I think that’s a really major obstacle for us moving forwards in the next decade.”

“It’s about time we stood up as a country and said failure is okay, learn from it and build something greater. That is where the magic happens.”

Vic Crone: Running for Revolution
Vic Crone: Running for Revolution

social media

Vic Crone recently gave a public lecture as part of the Centre for Innovation and Entrepreneurship’s Unleash Your Potential Speaker Series. The series aims to bring to the stage innovators and entrepreneurs from a diverse range of backgrounds to inspire, provoke and catalyse. Vic’s lecture gave the public the opportunity to gain insight into her vision for the future, and the many learnings from her past.

Vic Crone grew up believing she could do it all. The division of tasks into male and female didn’t exist in her mind, something that would be really important in the development of her career in the male dominated tech space.

“Your circumstances shape you” says Vic “what my parents taught me was the value of learning, and the value of teamwork, and that’s something that I’ve carried right throughout my career.”

Vic laughs as she explains that there are no claims to fame in her lineage “I’m Mick Jagger’s eighth cousin – that’s it.” Both her parents grew up in state houses and she grew up in a family without a lot of money. However there was a strong belief in the value of education as a route to success so Vic went to university even though she “didn’t really have any idea what to do”.

After completing a Masters she decided that it was time to stop studying and move into the workforce and joined Telecom. With her father as her role model she spent 18 years at Telecom starting as an analyst and getting to an executive position.

And then “I realised the world’s changing and this whole thing of being with one company for life, that’s all gone. So there was no way that I wanted to continue that journey”. Her next move was to innovative accounting software company Xero where she was managing director.

Vic says that she has “always just jumped in without thinking about it too much”. An approach that she has applied to everything from the deep end of a swimming pool at age two to running for the Auckland mayoralty. “Nothing great is achieved in your comfort zone” she says “the best work that I have ever achieved has been when I’ve shoved myself out of it literally running, jumping, and leaping”.

One of the challenges for people in the future Vic explains, will be navigating the future nature of work. Careers will no longer be something that progresses linearly and the skills needed will be very different to those needed today.

“Lifelong learning and how you achieve that is one of the biggest things that our country can start to talk about. If you don’t have that lifelong learning you won’t get through the next 20 years in terms of careers and businesses.”

“You’ve got to be curious and have courage to question the status quo, and don’t be put off by people who say no. Commitment to overcome the challenges is the message.”

To move forward and embrace the future successfully will need loyal and winning teams driven by a strong sense of purpose. Vic explains that to create teams like that is down to three things “the head, the hand, and the heart. So it’s what are you doing, how do you do it, and why you do it. And when you put those three things together and you can create some incredible teams.”

She is passionate about New Zealand growing and developing as an innovative and entrepreneurial country. Observing the development of smart cities in other countries was a driver in Vic running for the Auckland mayoralty. From these observations she believes that we need is to be proactive in investing in the technologies of the future such as driverless cars and new food sources.

One key thing holding New Zealand back as a country, Vic says, is our attitude to failure and success. “We’ve got to lift the ambition of our country. I think that’s a really major obstacle for us moving forwards in the next decade.”

“It’s about time we stood up as a country and said failure is okay, learn from it and build something greater. That is where the magic happens.”


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