During the last year, while largely in lockdown, it became evident that we have extraordinary experience, resourcefulness, and resilience within our Victorian WCEI community. Yet often we look outward for knowledge, content and guidance from others. It inspired an idea to tap into the gold of our own high calibre members.
So, we created our own unique mentoring program.
The thing is, many women want to talk not just listen. We often need to talk to really work out what we are thinking and feeling, what’s on our minds and how it sounds when we share our thoughts. Often, we need to be in a safe place to explore our thoughts and ask questions in confidence before we take our ideas to a wider audience. We love to understand how others feel, how others think, and how others do it.
To take advantage of the wealth of knowledge and experience of the women in our group we agreed to meet, via Zoom, every two months to participate in our WCEI Victoria mentoring program. The 10–15-minute introduction is based on a leadership theme or issue. We then pair up in virtual rooms to discuss the topic or simply just talk. The big ideas that emerge are summed up and shared at the end. That’s it, simple. Basically, we talk, listen, and create our community as we go.
Our program has covered topics like Get the Balance Right, Overcome Limiting Beliefs, The Confidence Game, Listen from the Heart, Tell Your Story, Celebrate Success.
What have we discovered?
- A guided conversation between a diverse range of smart women who whilst successful in their own right, have the same challenges as everyone else in life and in their professional space.
- A supportive and inclusive group of wonderful, smart, and strong females
- Hearing about other participants challenges and stories re their work and personal life in an environment that is conducive to people sharing on a deeper level.
- Being able to connect with other professionals and business owners as running your own business can feel lonely at times.
- Making new connections with businesswomen and thinking about the value of executive coaching and mentoring for myself.
- That I have some wisdom and experience to impart but also lots to learn.
- I’m connected socially with someone I did not know prior to the mentoring which has been a joy.
- I’ve reached out and sourced some recommendations for executive coaching
- Inspired, collegiate, included, connected, positive and invigorated
In summary we know we have the answers within but it’s great to share our thoughts with other successful women.
Facilitated by Jenny Hoysted, Leadership Coach, who knows that, at our best, when we are feeling comfortable and confident, most of us can be highly effective. We can speak clearly and powerfully; we can be sympathetic and understanding. We can find the right words of encouragement – or challenge. We can support our WCEI members to be seen and heard so they can be effective in their business and personal lives.