Winning feels pretty good - with Louisa Bloomer

Winning the ACE New Zealand Emerging Leader Award feels pretty darn good. Just ask Louisa Bloomer, regional digital practice lead at Stantec who won in 2022 for her leadership quality and potential.

Louisa Bloomer has 31 team members at Stantec spread out across Aotearoa and Australia and every day, she puts her leadership skills to the test.

''On a daily basis, I get to hear about so many interesting projects from designing new hospital wings, drones that make safety assessments, analytics that predicts flood risk to communities, through to how we’re doing environmental impact assessments and I get to watch my group deliver incredible digital solutions that make better outcomes for communities,'' says Louisa.  Judged by leaders in the professional consulting sector including specialists at Tonkin+Taylor - the sponsor of the awards - winners are scored out of five for things like leadership quality, stakeholder management and the ability to inspire and motivate people. For Louisa, the thrill was as much about winning as going through the application process. 

''I really wanted to get the story of my career path across, as I’m really fortunate to have had it. I also think it’s relatively unique, it’s not a pathway I got to see when I was younger. Now aged 34, with three children, both public and private sector experience and having worked internationally, I lead a team of 31, shortly to become a community of hundreds. I think it is a cool story - especially for other young women to see, as maybe it will influence their sights in terms of what their career might look like.

''I think it is really important to tell that story that you can have a family, you can have a seat at the leadership table and make a huge change, while still finding balance. Hopefully that influences others and then I’d love to see those people then influence my daughters.''

What does leadership mean to you? ''I think leadership is about building trust, and growing a group and a direction, based on a collective intake of ideas and perspectives. I think a leader is really someone who can pull together a story or a voice, whether that be a group of 4 or 400 people, a project team or at an organisation level. It’s someone who can help tell the story of the direction we want to go and do that in a way that brings others on board.''