Meet the team

Jann Watt-Drake

Jann Watt-Drake is passionate about helping people find their career mojo. Personal branding is a key to helping people focus on the positives in their lives, and Jann's personal mission is to be catalyst for making work meaningful and fun.

After observing a number of highly talented people feeling unfulfilled in their roles, Jann stepped out of her corporate role in Organisational Development and launched de novo in August 1999 to enable her to follow her purpose of inspiring others to be the best they can be (and more).

Jann has a reputation of being a forward thinker, yet always practical, quickly tapping in to the barriers that are holding people back and giving them the tools and confidence to achieve their career goals. To benefit of others, she shares her knowledge life experiences and network with authenticity and optimism. She is a firm believer that networking is all about sharing. This is clearly seen in the number of coffee chats Jann fits in to her busy week with people within her network.

Jann loves 1:1 coaching and is also happy working with groups in the role of facilitator or trainer.  She was New Zealand's first Reach-Certified Personal Branding Strategist.

Career Transition and Strategy Coaching, Interview Technique Coaching, Leadership Coaching, Personal Insight and Effectiveness Coaching, People Development, Talent Sourcing, Facilitation, Public Speaking.

Sue Blair

Sue Blair joined the de novo a team in 2010. In addition to expertise in career transition programs and one on one coaching Sue brings over 20 years recruitment industry experience to the de novo team. Sue has had the opportunity and privilege to work with many outstanding New Zealand businesses, clients and candidates, many of whom she has dealt with for much of this period. This knowledge and experience in recruitment and selection is well utilised in her capacity as a consultant working in partnership with a diverse range of businesses on staffing, training, career development, business development and HR related initiatives.

Her time in the recruitment industry has included being part of the establishment team for two successful businesses, one of these being for a leading international recruiter and managing the Wellington office which became the Australasian award winning operation. Sue specialised in executive recruitment for 12 years with a particular focus on roles in general management, marketing, sales, communications, operations and service delivery for clients in private, public and Not for Profit sectors. She has also worked on many recruitment projects that have involved volume recruitment, change management and restructuring. As a result Sue has extensive networks and contacts in these areas, particularly so in the Wellington market. There has been a natural synergy between Sues background and consulting in career transition and strategy. Feedback from those who have worked alongside Sue over this time suggests she has a reputation for being engaging, energetic, empathetic and professional while also knowing how to have fun. Colleagues and clients see her strength in relationship management and sage advice resulting in open transparent processes, a thorough understanding of individual and team needs and a collaborative approach to achieving desired outcomes.

Career Transition and Strategy Consulting, Interview Technique Coaching, Talent Sourcing, Talent Management, Tailored recruitment solutions and techniques, Independent Panel Interviewer, People Development.

Bruce Johnston

Bruce Johnston joined the denovo team in 2015. He is an experienced professional career strategist, mentor and coach. Having successfully negotiated seven career changes himself, Bruce is someone who has already been where you currently are in your career. He has made the transition or career change you’re trying to achieve. In General and Senior Management experience in business, and his own companies, Bruce has gone through the same professional hardships you’re dealing with right now. He has “already climbed your mountain”.

Bruce also has 10 years of specialist recruitment and HR Consulting experience, as a Senior Consultant, and Director/Shareholder. Combining this experience with skills and expertise as a career strategy mentor, and interview skills trainer, Bruce understands what employers look for in a prospective candidate, what stands out in a job application, and result producing personal presentation. Bruce’s work and experience covers seven industries, and a diversity of personalities, job types, and levels of seniority.

Bruce has worked in General and Senior Management roles for the Ford Motor Company, Subaru NZ, the National Provident Fund, Morrison Morpeth, Westpac Financial Services, and PowerHouse People. Most recently he managed, and worked as an Instructor in his own company Body Magic Pilates.

Career Transition and Strategy Consulting, Interview Technique Coaching, Talent Sourcing, Talent Management, Tailored recruitment solutions and techniques, Independent Panel Interviewer, People Development.