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Auckland Council Local elections 2019

Skills and qualities you need to become an elected member

Ngā pūkenga me ngā āhuatanga me whai koe ina tū hei mema pōti

Elected members come from diverse backgrounds, and bring a range of different skills and experiences to the role.

​Who can become a candidate

You don't need any specific qualifications to become a candidate in the local elections.

You just need to be:

  • a New Zealand citizen
  • aged 18 years or older
  • enrolled on the electoral roll.

Skills and qualities that make a successful elected member

Time management

Being an elected member and representing the views of Aucklanders requires a lot of preparation.

You will be expected to read agendas, minutes, plans, reports, submissions, advice, recommendations and various other materials.

You will need to be flexible and able to prioritise and manage your time effectively.


You will often work outside of normal working hours, at night and on weekends.


You will be in the public eye as a part of your role, and will be called upon to speak publicly at meetings and events, and give comments to media on certain issues.


You will need to be able to listen to, relate to and empathise with the people you represent, and feed their views into your decision-making. 

You should be able to confidently communicate your own views and opinions when speaking publicly and when engaging with the public. 

A large portion of the role will involve technology, so you should know how to use email, Skype, and a smartphone, computer or tablet.

Strategic thinking and decision-making

You will need to draw from a range of sources when making decisions - advice from staff, community views and your own experience.

You will need to be able to balance conflicting views, consider the financial and long-term consequences of decisions, and keep an open mind. 

You also need to understand how the governing body and local boards work, so you can get an idea of what decisions you may be able to influence. 


As a part of your role, you will need to build and maintain productive relationships and networks.

You should be willing to respectfully engage with a wide range of people from different cultures and disciplines, including community members and council employees.

Te Tiriti o Waitangi/The Treaty of Waitangi

We are committed to meeting our responsibilities under Te Tiriti o Waitangi/The Treaty of Waitangi, and our broader statutory obligations to Māori.

Knowledge of tikanga Māori will be helpful in your role as an elected member. 

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