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The New Zealand Railways Magazine, Volume 6, Issue 2 (June 1, 1931)

General Manger's Message — The Change In Control. — As it Affects the Public

page 8

General Manger's Message
The Change In Control.
As it Affects the Public.

A great adventure, with the odds on success—that is how the change in the system of administration adopted under the Railways Amendment Act of 1931 impresses me.

It represents the materialisation of an idea with possibilities for the future welfare of the railway system of the Dominion and of the Dominion itself.

The freeing of the Department from the deflecting or dispersing power of non-business influences and considerations clears the decks for the emergence of a policy which will allow the principles of modern business management to have fuller play.

The responsibilities of the Board are great and obvious. Equally great, if not greater, is the responsibility of the public to adjust its point of view and its methods of approach to the railway business to conform to the new conditions. The change connotes the abandonment of the political point of view as affecting the Department's business and of political channels of approach to the Department. The extent and effectiveness of the change in both these aspects will, in the last analysis, depend on the public itself. It is a great opportunity.

As it Affects the Staff.

Much interest has been felt throughout the service in the probable effect of the change in control of the Railways, upon the position and prospects of members. Therefore to the members of the staff I would give this message:—

The change means the emancipation of the Department from trammelling influences. Our main consideration now is to get the business and do the job. If we don't get the business then there's no job. There can be no such things as sheltered positions in the service—everyone must be able to prove himself necessary and valuable to the Department or there is no reason for his employment.

It is my belief that the new order provides a way past many stumbling blocks which have hitherto impeded progress and made our service not understood. From now on we should find fuller opportunity for all the business capacity and enterprise within the Department in watching expenditure, inducing patronage, and producing a service dependable in every respect and worthy of a great nationallyowned public institution.

General Manager.