It is hard to even believe that HERA has made the major milestone of releasing our 100th podcast episode!

I recall the moment that we sat in our newly engaged PR company’s office discussing how HERA could improve its communication reach, and they pitched the podcast idea.

I honestly thought they were mad. I had no idea how to curate a podcast and I was unsure how we could get people to listen when we were struggling to get engagement with our normal communications as it was! All I can say is that Alexander PR was extremely convincing because fast-forward a few months and we were launching our first podcast to the world!

Now five seasons on with over 10,000 downloads and 100 episodes under our belt, as well as being named a shortlisted finalist in the global SABRE Awards – it is safe to say it was the communications move of a lifetime!

Reflecting on 100 episodes

How it all began… a focus on digital

Back in 2019 HERA was looking to do things differently.  We had made a strategic communications plan which was focused on pivoting to digital communications, increasing our touch points and committing to being more transparent and genuine on a regular basis. We also decided that we had to be a stronger thought leader which meant provoking conversations and choosing a side of a fence when it came to topical conversations in play.

Until that time, we had not been too loud in sharing what we were doing, what we stood for, or responding to statements in media. In fact, it would be safe to say that for the most part, our industry has always been comfortable with saying very little… sticking to the notion that a ‘heads down and bottom up’ approach ensures our great work does the talking for us!  Of course, this didn’t work in our favour as it allowed others to position us in the market.

For HERA, our podcast ‘Stirring the Pot’ was the answer. If the topic wasn’t inspiring, insightful or challenging in someway to the listener – it didn’t make the cut. From steel making to our research, sustainability, innovation, Industry 4.0, mātauranga Māori and more we have had amazing guests share their expertise on the topics that matter.


A new lease of life

Admittedly, mid-way through this year we were thinking the podcast had done its dash and perhaps it was time to wind it up. Five seasons is a long time, and it is hard to know if you are cutting through the noise.

The podcast gods must have heard us! Last month hitting our 10,000 download milestone, a week later releasing our 100th episode, and then low and behold – we made the top 15 inspirational podcasts in Aotearoa list!

It was enough to keep us hooked – so don’t worry, Stirring the Pot is not going anywhere soon, because these are three amazing milestone that we’re really proud of!

So, what better way to celebrate… than to highlight the top 25 podcasts across our five seasons who have contributed greatly to getting us where we are today!

Season 5 | 2023: Episodes 84 – 100


Ep. 89 – Mumin Bhat | Ecostruxure Power at Schneider Electric, National Business Development Manager

Ranked 7th across all five seasons


Ep. 84 – Tīmoti Harris | Empowering NZ, Manager


Ep. 86 – Marie-Salome duval-Chaneac | University of Auckland, PhD in Material Science and Engineering


Ep. 97 – Geoff Bird | Beca, Structural Technical Development Manager; and Craig Stevenson | Aurecon Technical Director – Buildings and HERA Chair


Ep. 95 – Cliff Ellery | Tīra, General Manager – Innovex

Season 4 | 2022: Episodes 60 – 83


Ep. 69 – Sahar Hosseini | New Zealand Steel, Quality Assurance Manager

Ranked 10th across all five seasons


Ep. 63 – Margaret Devlin | Infrastructure NZ, Chair; and Amy Barrett | Downer, GM New Business & Commercial

Ranked 22nd across all five seasons


Ep. 66 – Wairangi Jones | Tira, Specialist in Māori Engagement and Cultural Advice

Ranked 24th across all five seasons


Ep. 75 – Stephen Powell | Black Steel Mobile Ltd, General Manager


Ep. 70 – Chris Litten | BRANZ, General Manager of Research

Season 3 | 2021: Episodes 41 – 59


Ep. 48 – Nicky Smith | HEB Construction Chartered Professional Engineer

Ranked 4th across all five seasons


Ep. 42 – John Cole | University of Auckland Engineering & Law Student and HERA Intern

Ranked 6th across all five seasons


Ep. 53 – Mahonri Owen | At the time: Pūhoro Charitable Trust, General Manager – Research and Enterprise

Ranked 11th across all five seasons


Ep. 46 – Ceinwen McNeil and Matt Bishop | BVT Engineering, CEO; and Founder & Managing Director

Ranked 14th across all five seasons


Ep. 49 – Troy Coyle | HERA, CEO; and Renata Hakiwai | HTK Group Managing Director

Ranked 21st across all five seasons

Season 2 | 2020: Episodes 23 – 40


Ep. 34 – Emily Townsend | Life Cycle Association of New Zealand, President

Ranked 1st across all five seasons


Ep. 39 – Greg Macrae | University of Canterbury, Associate Professor – Department of Civil and Natural Resources Engineering

Ranked 2nd across all five seasons


Ep. 24 – Shahab Ramhormozian & Professor Charles Walker | Auckland University of Technology

Ranked 8th across all five seasons


Ep. 28 – Chris Bumby | Victoria University of Wellington – Robinson Research Institute, Project Lead and Senior Scientist

Ranked 13th across all five seasons


Ep. 23 – Sarah Lewis | HERA, Whanake Scholarship Recipient; and Leland Ruwhiu | Pūhoro STEMM Academy

Ranked 15th across all five seasons

Season 1 | 2019: Episodes 1 – 22


Ep. 1 – Goran Roos | Industrial Transformationalist Professor

Ranked 3rd across all five seasons


Ep. 22 – Des Watkins | Watkins Steel, Managing Director

Ranked 5th across all five seasons


Ep. 20 – Clair Jewell | NZ Steel, Environment Manager; Scott Morrison | Fletcher Steel, Marketing and Innovation Manager

Ranked 9th across all five seasons


Ep. 3 – Troy Coyle | HERA, CEO; Darren O’Reily | SCNZ, General Manager; Nick Collins | At the time: Metals NZ, Chief Executive

Ranked 12th across all five seasons


Ep. 15 – Tim Ng | Treasury Deputy Secretary and Chief Economic Advisor

Ranked 16th across all five seasons

Keen on ‘Stirring the Pot’ yourself?!

If you haven’t yet tuned in to our podcast, please head over to your favourite podcast platform and hit subscribe!

If you want to stir the pot yourself when it comes to your communications but aren’t sure how to do it… we have an amazing digital content studio ‘Pūtātara’ which is available to support our members in their own digital content creation.

Find out how you can utilise it today by contacting our General Manager Communications, Kim Nugent.