Z celebrates service station staff who go above and beyond at 2024 Z Retailer Hero Awards

March 6, 2024

Z Energy (Z) is recognising site staff that brighten their customers’ days, make the best barista-made coffee, and go above and beyond in every way at the annual Z Retailer Heroes Awards.

After a brief hiatus due to COVID-19, the awards were back up and running in Christchurch last night, with Z on a mission to find site staff that represent the very best of an already awesome team.

Z’s GM Customer, Andy Baird says that Z's customer promise is to make the service station experience “easy and enjoyable”, and the winners of this year's awards exemplify the above-and-beyond culture that Z champions.

“Z sites are part of a constantly moving Aotearoa, helping Kiwi and our communities on the go. We aim to provide the best possible customer experience and our crew are key to enabling this.

“We've promised to back our people and encourage them to be the best they can be as an individual and as part of a team. They’re ready to anticipate and respond to customer needs to create a unique “wow factor” experience,” says Andy.

Andy states the calibre of entrants was very high, and it was difficult to pick winners as every Z service station is lucky to have such great team members.

“I would like to sincerely congratulate all our winners last night, as well as all our finalists. We could not be prouder of the work you do, the stories you have, and the difference you make.”

Award winners

Site Team Hero

Z Hautapu in the Waikato won the group award for Site Team Heroes for demonstrating an excellent and supportive team environment that saw them grow sales, despite some staffing shortages. The judges highlighted the way the team chipped in to bridge this gap, while maintaining their above and beyond approach to customer service and an immaculately presented store was something to be proud of.

Customer Experience Hero

Cara French-Green of Z Sawyers Arms in Christchurch won the award for Customer Experience Hero. Cara demonstrates the “Z Factor”, with the judges remarking that her customer service is defined by “surprise, delight, and wow”. Cara receives amazing customer feedback, with one customer remarking that Cara remembered her coffee order verbatim after more than five months since she’d last visited Z Sawyers Arms.

Foodie Focus Hero

Jessica-Rose Fastier of Z Courtenay Street in New Plymouth was named as the Foodie Focus Hero for bubbly, energetic, and friendly food service – with one customer remarking “she treats everyone like a long-lost friend”. Jess has taken real ownership of the café zone at Z Courtenay Street and has immense pride in being a true professional and executing her role to the highest standard.

Z Stands Hero

Leanne O’Neil of Z Seaview in Wellington and Saloni Bajaj from Z’s operations team were named joint winners of the Z Stands Hero award for their commitment to representing Z’s Stands – the company pillars of environmental sustainability, community, diversity and inclusion, and safety and wellbeing.

Leanne O’Neil drew accolades for her willingness to challenge the status quo in order to prioritise the safety and wellbeing of her team, the level of respect she both gives and receives, and her “fix-it” mentality. Leanne has been closely involved with the local community in Seaview, including attending community meetings to ensure Z is an active member and contributes to the community in a positive way.

Meanwhile, Saloni Bajaj had demonstrated a passion for the training and development of people, particularly in areas of safety, staff and processes. She led the teams that conducted refreshes of Z Sylvia Park and Z Otahuhu, and she is often sought out for her advice on food and coffee.