Clubs New Zealand 2021 Conference, AGM & EXPO - WRAP UP

25 March 2021

The Clubs New Zealand 2021 Conference, AGM & EXPO was held from the 19th through to the 22nd of March hosted by the Richmond Club. The Clubs New Zealand Conference, and & EXPO gives clubs from right across New Zealand the opportunity to come together, enjoy each other’s company and learn about fantastic opportunities, new ideas and more.  What made this conference so much more special was that it was our first major get together since COVID and for the Richmond Club a chance to show off the results of many years hard slog. We would like to thank everyone who attended conference this year and we would like to extend a huge thank you and congratulations to the Richmond Club for being fantastic hosts. The entire Richmond Club team went above and beyond to make sure delegates and guests were welcome and we cannot thank them enough.

Below is a wrap up of the 2021 Conference & AGM and where possible we have included PDF versions of the speaker’s presentations for you to view. Photos will be loaded onto our Facebook page shortly and we encourage you to share any snaps you have.


This years conference started off a little different with the Hop on Hop off Bus Tour and Addington Race Night.

We have had fantastic feedback from everyone who participated in these activities.  

A big thank you must go to the TAB who helped to sponsor the Addington Race Night and contribute to the prizes available. 

The winner who took out the Clubs New Zealand 2021 Conference Punting Challenge was Alby of Waitomo Club - who is the proud recipient of bragging rights until next year!


This year’s expo took place on Saturday 20th March and featured a wide range of exhibitors. The expo provides a wonderful opportunity for delegates to get face to face with our industry supporters and see first-hand how their products and services can benefit your clubs.  

If you didn’t get a chance to touch base with all our wonderful exhibitors or want to continue the conversations, you can click on the logos below to find out more information on the exhibitors and contact information.




































Conference morning started with a bus trip, delegates were split into two groups with one heading to Papanui Club and one heading to Hornby Club for quick fire workshops.  Delegates then returned to Richmond Club for an afternoon of key note presentations.

We would like to extend our gratitude to our wonderful Master of Ceremonies, Nicky Styris - what many of you wouldn't have known is that our conference was Nicky's first gig as MC and we are sure you will all agree she was brilliant.

Bernie and his team are seasoned veterans in light commercial design specialising in hospitality and retail. Bernie's presentation focused on the need for clubs to change in order to keep up with the rest of the world, but that the change must be for the right reasons.

Through his experience working with Clubs, Bernie was able to highlight some of the challenges clubs face in adopting change and reframed that to identifying the clubs purpose, what do you have to work with and the importance of involving your members in the journey.

At the conclusion of the presentation Bernie opened up a competition for one club to win $7,000 worth of consult services from RM Designs, the catch being that the winner had to cover travel related costs and report back to the AGM next year - that draw was made and we would like to congratulate Papakura Club - we look forward to hearing from you in 2022.

Melicia joined us from the Canterbury Employers Chamber of Commerce and was tasked with talking to delegates about respectful workplaces.  In her short presentation Melicia was able to touch on an introduction to workplace culture, what is unacceptable behaviour and bullying, what the law says and how to take all of that information to respond to unacceptable behaviour.  

Most importantly Melicia talked about the features of a positive culture and how you can develop a way forward.

Download a copy of Melicia's PowerPoint Presentation

Download a copy of Melicia's handout

Download a copy of the CECC HR and Employment Relations price list

The first of our afternoon keynote speakers was Nigel Latta, New Zealand Clinical Psychologist and TV Presenter.  As you may well have guessed from his presentation title, Nigel was here to talk about bullying.

Nigel asked a number of questions, why do we have so many personal grievances in clubs? What is the purpose of our clubs, is it good times or shit times? and What is the purpose of a leader?

Culture eats strategy for breakfast - the things we tolerate become our culture.  Culture is not what we say it is, it is what we do and it is measured by our actions.

Leadership is about service not seniority and a title does not mean you are a good leader. The bottom line from Nigel's presentation is that no one ever deserves to come to work an be yelled at or belittled, bad leadership is toxic and the implications of bullying that is allowed to fester will be felt throughout your organisation.

It is the job of our leaders to make people's lives better.

We were thrilled to be joined by the Hon Tracey Martin.  Tracey explained that in her time as Minister for Seniors she became incredibly passionate about the topic and that it was fantastic to be able to address Clubs New Zealand without politics or constraint.

Tracey begun by raising two concerns, the first was the concern for clubs in general and the impact that COVID has had on us.  The second concern was that there are people in cabinet that refuse to support clubs, not because they are clubs but because they cannot be seen to support gambling.

We all know how important clubs are within our communities, but do the people making decisions know this.  Our population is ageing and now more than ever we need safe places that foster meaningful connections.  Not enough of the conversation has been focused on the role of clubs in the lives of our aging population.  Loneliness is a major issue and as we well know this can lead to a raft of health issues including depression and self neglect.  Clubs need to apply pressure to the Government and ask what will they be doing!

So what is a possible solution?  Offshore gambling is unregulated, conservatively over $300 million is going off shore.  That is $300 million that is untaxed and those providers do not contribute in any way to our harm minimisation efforts (in comparison Quarterly GMP for Dec 2020 was $252 Million).

What Tracey suggested was that if the powers that be are so determined to reduce the gambling offering of clubs than we must insist on being written into law are a beneficiary from other sources such as online gambling.

Tech is not a dirty word, it is an incredible tool.  When Paul and probably most of us in the room started in the workforce, many of the jobs that he was involved with are now gone, why, because they failed to acknowledge the role of technology and now they are gone.

All organisations need to get onboard with the tech wave of prepared to be knocked over by it.

Tech does require a continue investment and the trap many businesses fall into is adopting some tech, ticking the box and calling it a day.  Tech adoption is not just for the big guys, even those in the non tech industry i.e. clubs have a great opportunity for improvement.

Paul talked about some of the dinosaurs in our industry such as old paper based membership systems (and yes there are still some in operation), outdated computers, outdated POS, outdated booking systems and a lack of attention to cyber security.

Innovative clubs will be looking forward to ensure they have up to date fit for purpose systems, how can technology save you $ and time.  Could you turn your non tech assets such as space into co working spaces (all you need is a strong, stable internet connection).  Could we take some of our tournaments online so that participants could be playing together all over the country or even internationally.

Paul did touch on the dirty words in tech - cyber security, money and adoption.  These three things are the major barriers to success in the tech world.  

To wrap up Paul asked, what would your club look like if you were starting from scratch today?

In true Clubs New Zealand fashion, we finished up the conference day with a laugh.

We were thrilled to be joined by Ben Hurley and the tails of that pie.


Before the AGM begun we were joined by Jarrod True of True Legal Ltd to talk Class 4 Gaming.  Jarrod's presentation focused on amending the 37.12% minimum authorised purpose percentage and provided the background to achieving this relief for clubs.

Jarrod also covered a recent issue where a club was asked to amend its Harm Minimisation Policy in order to restrict the amount a patron could withdraw in cash per day - i.e. maximum $200 per day in cash.  Jarrod's warning here is that this was a trap, if a club adopts this type of policy and a patron is able to withdraw $210 in a day, the manager has committed a criminal offence.  Of course it is more than reasonable to have an inhouse policy on cash withdrawals, however, they should be kept separate from your harm minimisation policy.

Don't be bullied!  Seek support and information, contact Clubs New Zealand or Jarrod if something doesn't seem right.

Download a copy of Jarrod's PowerPoint

Following the agenda President Terry Ray welcomed attendees to the Clubs New Zealand 2021 Annual General Meeting.

A special presentation was made to outgoing board members, Bernard Hickey, Glen Beattie and Prem Nath, recognising their service to Clubs New Zealand.

Minutes from the Annual General Meeting will be loaded onto the Clubs New Zealand website as soon as they are available.


The Clubs New Zealand 2022 Conference and AGM will be hosted by Clubs Hastings dates to be confirmed.

The Clubs New Zealand 2023 Conference and AGM will be hosted by Timaru Town & Country Club pending the outcome of a feasibility study.


As mentioned before a huge thank you to the entire team at Club Richmond for helping and supporting Clubs New Zealand in delivering a fantastic Conference & AGM.

And finally, a big thank you to our conference partners, without these guys our conference would not be possible!