Kia ora, hello.
Hi, I'm Paul McGregor - a communications, co-design and social policy professional making things happen from the Nelson region at the top of the South Island. That's me in the photo, in case you hadn't guessed.
I help organisations with a social purpose to get new ideas off the ground, and tell a compelling story about their impact. Want to know more about my experience to date? Just head on over to LinkedIn.
My real passion lies in bringing diverse groups of people together to create new ways to address complex social challenges. Some people call this a social lab. Others call it community-led development. Most people have no idea what I'm talking about when I try to explain this at a dinner party.
I like to combine tools and methods from all sorts of worlds. Law and policy. Marketing and business development. Facilitation. Social entrepreneurship and lean startups. Design-thinking. To name just a few.
I'm frustrated by box ticking, and in a boring meeting I'll be the one asking 'What's even our purpose here'? or 'What do our customers/users/clients/partners think?' or 'How might we...'
Thanks for showing up.
What gets me out of bed
There's plenty to love about living in little old NZ. For many people, things are pretty rosy here. Yet, in the midst of that, we have facts like these:
- NZ has the worst teen suicide rate in the developed world. And it's getting worse.
- 1 in 5 New Zealand adults can't do basic reading, writing and maths. Yet we expect a lot from them.
- Over 50% of our prison population identify as Māori. Even though Māori make up only 14% of the population.
- We have one of the worst house-price to income ratios in the world.
These challenges are complex, continually evolving and systemic. That's what makes them so difficult to solve, and so worth getting out of bed for.
What I'm up to at the moment
I write this from the office of Business Lab - a niche consultancy that's connecting people for a stronger society. I'm now doing all my contracting work through Biz Lab and I'm chuffed to have a team beside me once again! We've got some pretty interesting work in the pipeline, with my two main projects involving ACC and a cross-sector group of agencies in the Top of the South Island.
The other half of my paid working life is with Adult Learning Support - a second-chance school for adults in Nelson. I'm loving the freedom in that work. Jumping from being on-the-ground alongside people learning again for the first time in years. And then sticking up my head to figure out how to align our marketing, funding or IT systems better with the people we're trying to serve.
I'm a member of three amazing tribes who keep me learning, connected and on-point.