Dr Betty Ofe-Grant

profile image

Lecturer

Email: betty.ofe-grant@aut.ac.nz

ORCID: ORCID logo https://orcid.org/0000-0003-0535-3596

Links to relevant web pages:

Academic appointments:

  • Lecturer / Researcher, AUT University (2019 - ongoing)
  • Researcher, The University of Auckland (2018 - 2019)
  • Tutor - Critical Issues in Management (Staqe 3), The University of Auckland (2017 - 2017)
  • Graduate Teaching Assistant - Business 101/102, The University of Auckland (2014 - 2018)

Qualifications:

  • PhD in Management, The University of Auckland
  • MHROD - Master in Human Resources & Organisational Development, Southern Cross University
  • Bachelor of Business, Manukau Institute of Technology
  • Introduction to teaching TESOL, Manukau Institute of Technology

Overview:

Dr Betty Ofe-Grant is a NZ-born Samoan academic of mixed heritage from Otara, South Auckland, and attended Mayfield Primary, Bairds Intermediate and Hillary College. Her parents were among the first Pacific migrants from Samoa to New Zealand in the late 1950s and were employed in the factories and hospitals of Auckland.

Betty's employment career began in the public sector before moving into mainstream corporate work. During her time as a public servant, Betty noticed the disparity and inequality for Maori and Pasifika and the disadvantages of low socioeconomic status with housing and income. Added to that were the societal class distinctions that further perpetuated poverty and low-skill, where these groups continue to cluster and over-represent labour-intensive and low-paid jobs.

In the private sector, Betty’s numerous roles and work observations in Human Resources, particularly Performance Management activities (such as performance appraisal interviews) highlighted the unfortunate consequences of cross-cultural misunderstandings between Pacific people and Western-NZ cohorts, and the lack of emotional and cultural intelligence that led to missed career promotions and opportunities for Pacific people. The combination of these work experiences and personal encounters were the impetus that ignited her quest for academic research in highlighting the work and cultural challenges for Pacific people (and other ethnic minorities) in the New Zealand context.

Research interests:

My research interests focus on work-related issues and the role of cultural identity for Tagata Pasifika (Pacific people) as ethnic minorities in New Zealand. This perspective navigates Fa'asamoa and other forms of traditional cultural hierarchy and gerontocracy, systemic discrimination and unconscious bias, and its impact on career advancement for Pacific people. Other research interests encompass Workplace numeracy and literacy, Poverty, International Business and small developing nations, and Labour Migration.

I also specialise in Oceanic/Pacific paradigms, methodologies and methods that advance traditional indigenous Pasifika scholarship and knowledge in research design. As such, I co-supervise Master students from Management and International Business departments, and serve as an examiner of Master Dissertations.

Teaching summary:

HRMG601 - Human Resource Management (includes Summer school)
HRMG701 - Diversity at Work
BUSS701 - Co-operative Education (Academic Supervisor for HRM students)

Professional activities:

Featured professional activities

    Appointment, affiliation, and membership

    • Member, Australian and New Zealand Academy of Management (ANZAM) Conference (2019 - ongoing)
    • Alumna, The University of Auckland Alumni (2019 - ongoing)
    • Member, International Business Honour Society, Beta Gamma Sigma (2019 - ongoing)
    • Early Career Academic (ECA) Maori & Pasifika Programme, Auckland University of Technology (2019 - ongoing)
    • Alumna, Southern Cross University (Australia) Alumni (2013 - ongoing)

    Editorship, reviewing, examining, and judging

    • Dissertation Examiner, Auckland University of Technology (2020 - ongoing)

    Invitation to present research

    • IAG Insurance Lunch and Learn: Smashing through the 'brown glass ceiling', IAG Insurance, NZI Centre, L1, 1 Fanshawe Street, Auckland CBD (2019)
    • 'Pacific Breakfast with Brian' (Radio 531 pi) Pacific Media Network, Boehringer Ingleheim Building Level 4, 2 Osterley Way, Manukau, Auckland (2019)

Research outputs:

Featured research outputs

  • Ofe-Grant, B. (2018). Smashing through the 'brown glass ceiling': Exploring perceived barriers and facilitators to career advancement for Samoans in Aotearoa, New Zealand. (University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand). Retrieved from https://researchspace.auckland.ac.nz/handle/2292/45109

  • Ofe-Grant, B. (2015). Samoans in New Zealand: Cross-cultural dilemmas. In Global and Cross-cultural Organizational Research. Maastricht University, The Netherlands: Aarhus University, Denmark & Maastricht University, The Netherlands.

Conference contributions

  • Ofe-Grant, B. (2019). Pure-bloods and mud-bloods: Perceptions of “double-barrelled” discrimination towards Afa-kasi (half-caste) and female Samoan CEOs and Senior Managers. In Gender and Diversity Research Showcase: Playing the Infinite Game. Auckland: Gender & Diversity Research Group.

  • Ofe-Grant, B. (2019). Silence is golden? Navigating the Pasifika culture of silence. In Creating Inclusive Classrooms Seminar. AUT University, Auckland: Gender & Diversity Research Group.

  • Ofe-Grant, B. (2018). Beyond the Pacific 'brown glass ceiling': Employment career challenges and strategies for contemporary Samoan CEOs and Senior Managers in New Zealand. In Oceans and Islands Conference. Fale Pasifika, University of Auckland: The New Zealand Institute of Pacific Research.

  • Ofe-Grant, B. (2018). Leading the future by remembering the past: The legacy of our parents, grandparents and matai for the next generation of Samoan senior managers and leaders. In Samoa Conference - "Our Heritage, Our Future: Fostering Sustainable Development through Leadership, Innovation and Collaboration". National University of Samoa: National University of Samoan - Samoan Studies. Retrieved from http://samoanstudies.ws/samoa-conference-iv-2018/

  • Ofe-Grant, B. (2016). Brown glass ceiling: Career challenges for Samoans in Aotearoa, New Zealand: (3Minute thesis PhD Category - Winner). In International Indigenous Research Conference. University of Auckland: Nga Pae o te Maramatanga.

  • Ofe-Grant, B. (2016). Pacific people, Cultural values, and Performance Appraisals. In Pasifika Graduate Conference: The University of Auckland. Fale Pasifika, The University of Auckland: Pacific Studies Centre, UOA.

  • Ofe-Grant, B. (2015). E fofo e le Alamea le Alamea: Employment Career Facilitators for Samoans. In Islands & Oceans: Navigating Pasifika Futures. Auckland, New Zealand: Pacific Studies Centre, University of Auckland. Retrieved from https://www.eventbrite.co.nz/

  • Ofe-Grant, B. (2015). Samoans in New Zealand: Cross-cultural dilemmas. In Global and Cross-cultural Organizational Research. Maastricht University, The Netherlands: Aarhus University, Denmark & Maastricht University, The Netherlands.

Reports

  • Sisifa, S., Ofe-Grant, B., & Stringer, C. (2019). Opportunities to improve vanilla value chains for small Pacific Island countries. Auckland, New Zealand. Retrieved from https://www.nzipr.ac.nz/

Theses

  • Ofe-Grant, B. (2018). Smashing through the 'brown glass ceiling': Exploring perceived barriers and facilitators to career advancement for Samoans in Aotearoa, New Zealand. (University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand). Retrieved from https://researchspace.auckland.ac.nz/handle/2292/45109

Other outputs

  • Ofe-Grant, B. (2019). 3MM: Dr Betty Ofe-Grant om weight bias in the clothing industry. Radio New Zealand. Retrieved from https://www.rnz.co.nz/

  • Ofe-Grant, B. (2019). Workplace challenges for Pasifika people - Brown glass ceiling. Radio New Zealand. Retrieved from https://www.rnz.co.nz/