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Navigator

Matthew Harris

On the beginning of Navigator…

After many years working for Inland Revenue I felt that it was time to see things from a different perspective. I literally walked out of my job and into a shared office down the road with little more than a laptop and a cellphone. It’s great to help people achieve their financial goals. We help a wide range of entrepreneurs, business owners and property investors comply with their tax obligations, obtain funding and grow their business. We are forward thinking and like to use a lot of smart software to make everyone’s job easier. 

On my role…

I am the Managing Director which means I wear many hats, but essentially, I meet with clients, work on new business, manage staff and ensuring the business meets its strategic goals. We have grown rapidly so some days juggling it all is a challenge. No two days are ever the same.

On the changes you’re seeing in business…

Technology and social media are changing the way business is done in New Zealand dramatically. We are seeing lower barriers to entry in almost every industry and a lot more businesses being started by younger people who have decided to ‘skip’ a career and go straight into business.

On advice when you’re starting your own business…

Ensure you know who your customer is, understand turnover versus cash flow, obtain an overdraft facility (even if you think you don’t need it) and prepare to pay Provisional Tax early. Even though it is now easier than ever to start a business in NZ, we still see these problems a lot in the first two years of a business operation. 

On living and working in Auckland…

After growing up in the sunny Hawkes Bay, I moved to Auckland and now live in Freeman’s Bay. Working in the CBD is great: lots of people, good coffee and restaurants. There’s a real sense that the Auckland business and social landscape is changing. 

On being inspired by the community…

Community is about my environment and the places I choose to be on a daily basis such as my office, local cafés, gym and friends’ houses. I am inspired by my clients, friends and family.

On someone that has made a significant impact in my life…

Peter, my mentor at Inland Revenue, taught me so much and I am forever grateful for the opportunity to have learned from him. He is a brilliant man!

On supporting the Starship Foundation through Great Full’s first project…

Access to quality healthcare is so important for New Zealand society as a whole. However, when it comes to children and families I think that if we can do something to make getting access easier, we have an obligation to do it.

On practicing gratitude…

I try to take a moment to be thankful every day for how far I have come. It’s not always easy to stop, take a breath and be happy with what you have achieved when you are always trying to achieve more! Gratitude in three words: today, thanks and happiness.

On partnering with Great Full…

I’ve wanted to get involved in something that would give back to the community and Great Full is such a great idea.