Ordinarily I wouldn't need to write here about processes that are part of the public service, however, as we all know, times have changed.
And particularly, when you have policies, procedures and controls which are in place to save lives and ultimately prevent further hardship on businesses, families and workers – this is a time and place for commenting because right now they affect us personally and collectively.
The most important essence of any undertaking, for it to be successful and achieve its objectives is trust.
And for trust to be created and maintained over the long term, leadership and the structures set in place to govern and manage the undertaking need to be both in place and effective.
Often times there is significant investment in the undertaking, meaning that the stakes can be very high and the price of failure is even more so.
Which brings me to the events of last week and how I personally went from a feeling of cautious confidence in the ongoing management of the Covid-19 threat to being where I am now – very concerned and more than a bit angry.
Right now I have clients, associates and members of the public telling me that the impact of "hard and (contestably) early" lockdown is both harsh and long-lasting.
The sacrifices made don't just apply to business either – they include being restricted in visiting family and friends, delays in necessary medical treatment, through to shortages of products and unavailability of services (among many others).
New Zealanders have paid a heavy price for the "prize" of being Covid free (or at least partially free as new cases are appearing).
It is not good enough that we are learning that the border processes that we rely on being reliable have been anything but.
Tests increase at Whanganui community-based assessment centre
Modern strengthening techniques for 100yo gallery
Costello showcases new tunes at single release party
It is not sufficient that, at the highest levels, those we rely on for leadership are denying either responsibility or saying they "don't have information".
Knowing that this viral threat was real back in January, there has been plenty of time to "get this right" and yet we are now in a phase of cracks appearing in the "dam" holding back the flow of community transmission.
And it only takes one significant crack to break it entirely.
All this does is erode confidence, which is something that people, markets and businesses need now more than ever. Once confidence goes trust follows. And should another community outbreak occur (God forbid), I worry that there may not be the compliant "team of 5 million" that existed in late March.
So, the message from me as a citizen, business owner and as one who is assisting local and national businesses to negotiate this difficult period of "recovery" is for the powers that be to go "hard and early" in ensuring (and confirming) that all necessary processes, controls and protocols at the border are in place and have been in place.
In addition, the true situation needs to be ascertained and released to the public ASAP.
As one example, if hundreds have left quarantine and were not tested this needs to be disclosed together with a plan for locating and testing them.
And if reports are correct we need to remind returning Kiwis that complaining about quarantine procedures is akin to moaning about getting wet when you finally make it to a lifeboat.
A special thanks to media and the whistle blowers out there as we are relying on them to assist with holding the system to account.
Already there is an alternative narrative appearing that the virus is really "hard to control", almost as if attributing cognitive skill to the bug which it certainly doesn't have.
A major reason for its spread is not that it is "crafty" or "elusive" but that worldwide there was a lack of preparedness and proper process. Actually, with proper planning and execution, any risk can be managed – in this case a single entry point actually makes it easier.
So to those in charge of mitigating this life and death, economically painful, socially degrading risk I speak for a number bigger than just myself about the requirement for effective border control – "JUST DO IT (and properly)".