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Forté Team Profile

Meet the Forté Management - Management and Marketing team

"If you can dream it you can do it."
Walt Disney (1901-1966)

Forté Management – management and Marketing Consultant's team is comprised of its two Consultant/Directors, Tony and Helen Smale. To complement our expertise we have woven together a carefully chosen portfolio of outstanding associates. Between us we provide our clients with a diverse range of management and marketing consulting services – drawing on high level expertise when ever it is needed. Please read on to meet the team.

Tony Smale - Principal Consultant, innovative fresh thinker

Tony is the firm's principal consultant. He brings his clients a distinctive blend of qualifications, experience, expertise, knowledge, insight and original thinking. Tony is considered New Zealand's leading expert on the relationships between national culture and innovation and management performance. That expertise permeates throughout all of his consulting work. He reads prodigiously in order to stay at the leading edge of what's happening around the world of business, seeking out the latest information and making sense of it for Kiwi businesses. For more detailed information about Tony, click for a PDF copy of his CV that outlines qualifications, experience, speaking roles and professional development.

Tony has broad governance and management experience in private sector business and in health, science and economic development – in addition to his more than 21 years of consulting. He is an accomplished and sought after speaker on a range of management subjects throughout New Zealand and further afield including Australia, the UNFCCC (United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change) conference in Bonn – speaking on a regional response to climate change, and the OECD Local Employment and Development conference in Vienna from where he was subsequently appointed to an OECD Expert Panel. Click for the OECD paper "Successful partnerships" that Tony was a contributor to.

Tony's qualifications
Tony's special competencies include

Click for a PDF copy of Tony's CV.

Helen Smale - Highly adaptable Management Practitioner

Helen brings a wealth of industry experience having worked in the seafood industry until September 2013 where she was CEO of the world leading Marlborough Shellfish Quality Programme. In that role she built a substantial national and international reputation for innovation and leadership. She is a multi-skilled and highly adaptable management practitioner who holds a Diploma in Training and Development, is studying for the Diploma of Professional Coaching and has participated extensively in professional development programmes over the last 25 years. She has earlier experience as a dairy industry quality assurance manager, is a qualified audiometrist, and managed a hospital audiometry department before joining the aquaculture industry.

Breadth and depth of experience

Helen has extensive experience is both governance and management roles. Upon joining the aquaculture industry in 1996 from a background in health sciences and dairy industry quality assurance management, she initially served as assistant Executive Officer of the NZ Marine Farming Association and NZ Mussel Industry Council with involvement in a broad range of initiatives including marketing, leading the development of industry based training, and project managing the establishment of the Queen Charlotte College Aquaculture Academy of which she was a Board member for several years. She was soon promoted to Executive Officer of the Marlborough Shellfish Quality Programme, the organisation that manages on behalf of industry, the water quality programmes that ensure compliance with market access water quality standards.

Helen had a leading role in the game changing innovation of the molluscan shellfish safety methodologies for detection of dangerous marine biotoxins that are now adopted worldwide. She advocated for the development of the new methodologies internationally, then led on behalf of the New Zealand aquaculture industry and alongside the Cawthron Institute and regulatory authorities, the development and adoption of the new methodologies, simultaneously improving food safety and saving the industry hundreds of thousands of dollars each year.

Helen has also been a member of and managed the National Industry Water Quality Committee and has represented the NZ aquaculture industry on the National Technical Committee and the NZ Seafood Standards Council. She is currently a member of the Cawthron Institute's Seafood Safety Industry Advisory Group.

Helen has served as a Board member of the Queen Charlotte Aquaculture Academy and has chaired the Marlborough Festival and Events Trust, Garden Marlborough, and the Ruru Trust.

International Roles

Helen was Chairman of the 2007 International Conference on Molluscan Shellfish Safety and is now a member of the International Advisory Committee. She is instrumental in transitioning the biennial international congress into an international scientific society. She has been a regular speaker and participant at national and international forums on Molluscan shellfish safety management in New Zealand, Spain, UK, Ireland, USA, South Africa, Australia and Denmark.

Special competencies include

In recent years Helen has been advocating for stronger alignment between quality and food safety programmes and consumers demands for information in their own language upon which they can make decisions regarding product integrity. Transferring her expertise in food safety management and the practices unique insights to consumer behaviour is one of Helen’s main focuses. Helen has competency in aquaculture, food and beverage processing and quality, water quality and food safety management, general management, training and coaching. Her particular competencies are in:

Click for a PDF copy of Helen's CV.

Branding and design associates

Please meet Tony Downing - Downing Design. Downing Design is a team of creative professionals based in Nelson, New Zealand. They use their creative talents, the tools of marketing, graphic design, advertising, and website design to help your business grow.

Publishing and Printing Associates

Please meet Maree and John Penney, Penney Consulting. John and Maree provide design, layout, digital printing, website and hardcopy publication services for our clients.

Intellectual Property Capture and Commercialisation Associates

Please meet Allan Main, Mainly Consulting. Allan complements Forté Management's intellectual asset and innovation management expertise through smart application of intellectual property tools to assist clients to achieve more with their innovations.