Resources for You

As recruitment consultants, we’re regularly asked questions about working in New Zealand’s public sector—everything from what to expect in a government job interview, to what the ‘senior’ in senior policy analyst really means.

To help out job seekers, contractors, and clients alike, we’ve put together a selection of resources from people in the know, including answers to common questions about working in the public sector, what it means to be a contractor and how to choose a recruiter.




Career Coaching and Management

While The Johnson Group does not provide career coaching, we are happy to recommend the following Career Management Coaches who may be able to help:

Leigh Johnson

I specialise in helping women over 50.  Why?  Because that’s where I know I make the biggest difference.  

Who am I?  I’m a successful coach, business owner, blogger and parent who loves adventure, learning and inspiring others. 

For more than 30 years I worked hard (too hard) in a range of roles. When I found my perfect job at age 40, it was time to fulfill my childhood dream to turn it into a business. The Johnson Group has now been operating for 14 years.

Then in 2015 (during my recovery from a major mental health event), I chose to put that painful experience together with my other life and work skills to purposeful use. That’s why I call myself a Work & Life Coach.  (This was also when I set up my blog site -

When clients started telling me that my strategies were surprisingly simple and effective – then I knew I could use them to help other women. I am now ‘living the dream at our wee house on Paraparaumu Beach. I love the work that I do - and I want you to love your work too! 

Contact Leigh

Susan Handisides

I am the founder and principal consultant of Sea Change Solutions.  I am committed to people having careers which are satisfying to them, using their competencies and meeting the demands of their lives.

I help people explore options and make decisions about where to next in their career.  I work with people who have been made redundant particularly those who are taking the opportunity to re-evaluate their career direction.  I also work with those who have embarked on a career journey and find it is not working for them.

Originally an accountant by profession I have been self employed, worked in the public sector, been employed in large corporates, worked for small businesses, been part of not for profit organisations, and juggled home and work commitments.  I have also experienced redundancy and made a significant career change.

Contact Susan: | (04) 905-2461 | 027-2311-443

Gillian Hellberg

Gillian has been working in career development in both the private and public sectors for the past twelve years. She comes from a background of teaching, recruitment and career development coaching. Prior to setting up her business Gillian was the Graduate Programme Coordinator with a Government Department, a role she took after she established the in-house recruitment centre for the same Government Department.

In both of the above positions, Gillian fully utilised her extensive recruitment, teaching and career coaching knowledge and skills.

Gillian’s ability and expertise in career coaching has developed from the sound training she undertook with the world renowned career coach Richard Knowdell. To fit the specific purpose and person, she utilises a combination of tools and material from Richard Knowdell and Paul Stevens, believing that each individual requires a customised approach within acknowledged guideline.

Contact Gillian: | 021-46-2881

Angela Hauk-Willis

I have been coaching and mentoring people for many years during my career as a senior manager in the state sector. For the past nine years I have focused on governance roles, tribunal work, advice to Chief Executives and Senior Leadership Teams and, increasingly, on coaching and mentoring. Both my Board appointments and my advisory work have enhanced my coaching/mentoring tool kit and I have successfully worked with a range of people, primarily senior managers and Chief Executives in the state sector, in a coaching and mentoring capacity.

I do not perceive coaching and mentoring as entirely separate professional interventions. Rather, each approach sits on one end of a continuum. Mentoring elements usually form part of a coaching assignment, and often there are coaching aspects to mentoring relationships. I also do not subscribe to a specific coaching/mentoring technique or framework. Successful coaching and mentoring, in my experience, relies on a tailored approach specific to the needs of the individual client.

I use a range of tools and exercises to stimulate thinking and their use depends on the client’s preferred learning style rather than on standard templates. Some clients prefer to reflect on issues by themselves, so ‘homework’ between session’s works for them, whereas others like to explore issues on the day on a whiteboard or through explorative discussion.

Contact Angela: | 021-892-113 | LinkedIn

Gillian Jones

Gillian is the Director of Change by Design Ltd.  Change by Design, an established and respected Human Resources consultancy firm, brings extensive experience supporting organisations and their people through change and development, with a key focus being the provision of quality change management and career transition and leadership coaching.  

As a principal consultant, Gillian Jones, brings more than 20 years experience working with organisations and with individuals to facilitate growth and change.  Her consulting focus includes: Leadership and Career Coaching; Career Transition; Change Management; Team Building; Values Alignment; Facilitation and Phased Retirement.  Gillian holds a Master of Education degree, a post graduate Certificate in Counselling gained through Canterbury University and a Diploma in Teaching.

Contact Gillian: | (04) 471-2155 | 027-443-764 |

Michelle Mearns

TruePoint has a nationwide team  of Career Coaches available to support you. We are experts in helping people create rewarding and dynamic careers and in assisting organisations to create an environment where employees can thrive and contribute at their best.

Our programmes are individually tailored to provide you with the best opportunity to clarify what you want in your career, providing support, strategies, resources and coaching on how to make it happen.

Programmes range from impactful single sessions coupled with our online assessment tools, through to a comprehensive series of sessions which help you to systematically discover your career vision and to create a powerful career strategy to achieve your goals.

We also help you with CVs, Interview Techniques and other Job Search Strategies

Contact Michelle: | 021-279-7875 |

Yvonne Anderson

Yvonne’s entire career has been about the enhancement and development of other people's lives. She has worked with a full spectrum of people; from those who have overcome life-threatening illness to individuals at the top of their game.

Backed with a blend of nursing, coaching, mindfulness training, adult training and supervision, Yvonne is passionate about working with individuals and teams to mindfully design their lives.

Yvonne works with many aspects of her clients’ professional and personal lives' to increase productivity, effectiveness and resilience by reducing stress, overwhelm and anxiety. She provides her clients with tools and frameworks for ongoing development.

Contact Yvonne: | 021-278-6931.

Alan Taylor         

I believe in the potential that an individual has and see my role to assist the individual to realise that potential. This can be obtained by using Vocational Assessment tools or engaging with an individual as they work to find that career path.

One of my strengths would be helping individual with their job search, as I have immense experience in this area as a result of my position at Valley Transitionz and now Red Cross. I also carry empathy for the client because of my experience of successfully changing my career path at forty years old.

Contact Alan: | 027-533-3534 

Alyson Garrido  

Alyson is passionate about helping professionals grow in their careers. As a career coach, she takes a strengths based approach and partners with her clients to create and execute a career strategy. Through her extensive experience supporting clients in job search, networking, interview preparation, salary negotiation and performance reviews, she ensures that her clients authentically present themselves in the best possible light for career advancement. She revels in helping professionals plan for a challenging project or conversation.

Alyson is unfailingly positive and inspires her participants to move forward and put their ideas into action. She values partnership and customer service above all else, creating a customised approach for her clients. 

Contact Alyson: | 022-572-0131 |