Leadership in Wine #25 - Grant Taylor

  • Alexis Robin

Grant is one of New Zealand’s most awarded Pinot Noir winemakers, earning a string of gold medal and trophy accolades throughout his long career. However, none surpasses winning the trophy for ‘Best Pinot Noir’ at the major International Wine Competition (IWC) in London an unprecedented four times – a feat achieved by no other winemaker in the world.

Grant established Valli in 1998 after eighteen years of winemaking experience in the USA, Australia, France and New Zealand. His philosophy is to highlight the differences between sub-regions in Otago. Having now completed over 40 vintages, he looks forward to the next 40 and how much knowledge they will bring in helping to understand and fulfill Otago’s potential.


How do you define leadership?

The ability to get others to achieve a desired outcome.


What are the main challenges of being a leader in the wine industry today?

Finding people with the right qualities, experience and skills to lead in the first place.


What are your major breakthroughs in your career to become the leader you are now?

Listening to, and respecting the opinions of everyone involved in the company, and not letting ego get in the way of good decision making.

Also, understanding that generally others do not necessarily do things the wrong way or worse than you do, just differently. It's the end result that counts, not someone’s individual methods along the way.


If you were starting your career in 2019 in the wine industry, what advice would you give to yourself to become successful and content?

Follow the path of what you most enjoy, don’t be led by the bigger $$$. If you enjoy and love it, the rewards will follow.

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  • David Joll
  • 28 May 2019
  • 10:33 pm

Appreciate the wonderful advice!

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