Long before ridiculous house prices and traffic chaos took the gloss off Auckland, entrepreneurial youngsters Rachel and Nick Cornwall made a calculated decision to redirect their future. In 2002, with a three week old baby, some great business ideas and not a lot else, the Cornwall’s decided to jump ship from Auckland and head to Hawke’s Bay. All they knew was that the region came highly recommended by university mates who had come from Hawke’s Bay. In Auckland, Nick had started a forestry management business that was easy to relocate to Hawke’s Bay. He has since successfully spearheaded new business development across a range of sectors. Rachel is Managing Director of the now well established recruitment company Red Consulting Group. Their children are 12 and 13. “We specifically chose Hawke’s Bay. We saw it as a place where we could develop opportunities, it seemed receptive to new business and people liked to do well, we knew it had excellent schools and it was a place people who’d grown up here wanted to come back to,” says Rachel. Their faith and hard work have been rewarded.
“EVERY DAY I CONSIDER HOW LUCKY I AM. I MEET PEOPLE OF OUTSTANDING CALIBRE AND WORK WITH VERY SMART BUSINESSES.” RACHEL CORNWALL, MANAGING DIRECTOR, RED CONSULTING GROUP
Red Consulting Group started in Auckland in 2003, and Rachel used her sales and marketing expertise to open a branch in the Hawke’s Bay a year later. Red is a boutique, fully integrated executive recruitment business and Rachel is well versed in identifying skilled leaders and decision makers right across the executive level. However, Red recruits throughout an entire organisation to ensure companies have the right people in the right roles. “We’re a niche business and every day I consider how lucky I am. I meet people of outstanding calibre and work with very smart businesses in Hawke’s Bay, New Zealand and, increasingly, internationally,” says Rachel.
“QUITE SIMPLY, OUR COMMITMENT IS TO LINK GREAT BUSINESSES AND GREAT TALENT. WE WORK ACROSS A WIDE RANGE OF SECTORS AND INDUSTRIES.”
Hawke’s Bay is great if you’re young, driven, not afraid of hard work and happy to be held to account. You don’t have the anonymity of a big city but I love the transparency. If you perform, you will succeed and people will support you. “There are some very good businesses here that are privately held, some people are doing really very well and these businesses are fuelling the economy.” Rachel quickly disputes the perceived pay rate disparity for top talent between regions like Hawke’s Bay and bigger cities. “If they are the best operator and win the role in Hawke’s Bay, they will enjoy parity with a main centre. There just aren’t as many of these top jobs.” Lifestyle is also a winner. “There’s no traffic, you know the parents of your kids’ friends and where they live, we have great school communities and an amazing physical environment, and an engaging and inclusive business and social community,” says Rachel.