PHOTO: TIM WHEELER
It’s easy for entrepreneurs to get bogged down in paperwork and planning, but sometimes you need to change things up to reinvigorate yourself.
From death-defying heights to underwater wonders, these eight activities are perfect for entrepreneurs in Melbourne who want to get their blood pumping. Try one if you dare.
For a full adrenaline junkie experience head to St Kilda to skydive over the beach. After jumping out of the plane you will experience 60 seconds of free-fall before enjoying a sail down to the sandy shore.
2. Escape room
Put your problem-solving skills to the test while you battle the clock at Escape Room Melbourne. You have just 70 minutes to solve the puzzles in the room in teams of two to six people. It’s a great team bonding experience that will have your heart racing and your brain working, too.
3. Rock climbing
Rock climbing is a fun activity that puts your strength to the test. Hard Rock in Melbourne’s CBD is a large facility with plenty of space to scale the walls. From the bottom it might not look that high but once you start climbing it’s a different story.
4. Shark diving
Interested in an extreme adventure? Head to Sea Life Melbourne Aquarium where you can come face-to-face with a shark – an experience you will probably never forget. Shark Tank has got nothing on this!
5. Hot air ballooning
You may have seen hot air balloons dotting the early morning skyline in Melbourne. Why not experience the city at sunrise in a hot air balloon yourself? Melbourne hot air balloon by BalloonMan gives you a thrilling ride with panoramic views of the city ending at the Grand Hyatt for a champagne breakfast.
6. Body electric dance class
Dancing might not seem too dare-devilish but Body Electric Dance Studio takes things to the next level. Designed for beginner adults, the jazz dance classes run for a semester during which you learn a routine. At the end of the semester there is a performance with matching costumes to boot. Test out your performance skills on stage and shake off those nerves! Classes often book out so get in early to secure a spot or apply to the waiting list.
PHOTO: TIM WHEELER
7. Treetop obstacle course
Trees Adventure in Glen Harrow Park is an obstacle course with a difference – it’s located high up in the canopy. Soar between the branches at super-fast speeds on the flying foxes, jump across to ropes and test out the airborne skateboard. The course will take you around two hours to complete and afterwards your legs might feel a little like jelly.
8. Aerials circus class
Learn circus skills with an aerials class. You can work on strength, flexibility and confidence while soaring through the air on a trapeze or aerial ring. The National Institute of Circus Arts in Australia is located in Prahran. Cirque De Soleil, eat your heart out.
Do you want to stretch your entrepreneurial mind? Rare Birds Con 2016 is a two-day conference (8-9 June) that equips founders and aspiring entrepreneurs with all the tools and information they need to grow global businesses. Come and connect with other businesswomen.
Entrepreneurs often say that co-founder relationships are like marriages. You find out the best and worst of your business partner throughout your journey. It’s great to have the support of a co-founder but when the going gets tough things can go awry.
These 10 pros and cons of having a co-founder may help decide if you need one or if you are better going solo.
1. Complementary skills
A co-founder can be a great addition to your business when they have complementary skills. A tech co-founder could help launch an app or SaaS platform when you do not have the skills to do so.
2. Two brains, one goal
Co-founders are great for sharing ideas and challenges of running a business. Rather than relying on your own brainpower, with a co-founder you can bounce ideas off one another and get a different point of view. Two brains can be better than one and that other brain is great for sanity-checking your ideas.
3. Trusted support
You and your co-founder will be a team in the good times to celebrate the wins and bad times when you need to support one another.
4. Mitigate risk for investors
Having a co-founder on board shows investors that someone has already bought into the idea, besides you! A team of two validates the business and can settle any qualms investors might have about the probability of success.
5. Shared resources
Ideally you and your co-founder will be come from different backgrounds and have different connections, and spheres of influence. Combining forces will enable you to create a larger impact, so you can scale faster.
1. If they’re not 100% in, they need to be 100% out
It can be challenging getting your co-founder to commit to the same level of involvement as you. If they’re not 100% ‘on the bus‘, then at some point you may have problems.
2. Staying aligned over time
As the business grows and evolves so too might your personal view of the direction the business should move in. This could be a sticking point if your co-founder has a different plan in mind.
Not everyone thinks alike and disagreements are a common problem that breaks up co-founding teams.
Committing to a co-founder is a big step. You will be contractually obliged to stick with them in good times and bad, or you might end up out of pocket.
5. Dividing up work
Working out who is responsible for what can cause rifts, especially if you and your co-founder have similar skill sets.
Before you take the leap
If you are thinking of finding a co-founder for your business it’s essential you share the same vision. Make a list of ideal qualities you would like in your co-founder and skills you lack.
If you do choose to get a co-founder on board sign an agreement to protect each party. Use a free template as a starting point.
Are you a founder who is experiencing problems in your business? Rare Birds can connect you with a mentor who can help steer you through the maze of uncertainty, which may be creating problems for you and your co-founder.
What is the value in mentorship? How does an experience with a mentor (or being a mentor) impact the personal and professional life of an entrepreneur?
These were the questions discussed at our Rare Birds ‘Meet My Mentor’ event with panelists Vanessa Cullen (Principal of Forward Thinking Design), Ron Geekie (CEO Coach and TEC Chair of The Executive Connection) and Shan Shan Wang (Founder and CEO of Roam Technologies). Led by Rare Birds Founder and CEO Jo Burston, the panel shared their experiences of mentoring and being mentored throughout their entrepreneurial journeys. Key learnings included:
Mentoring is experience sharing, rather than advice giving.
Ron noted ‘the best mentors don’t give advice, but know how to ask the right questions’. As Ron’s mentoree, Vanessa said that sometimes Ron will keep asking her questions ‘until I’ve figured out my own answer…’ For Shan Shan Wang, her mentors have often prevented her from making costly mistakes through sharing their own challenges and how they overcame them.
Time with your mentor is precious – go in prepared.
It’s important to remember that your mentor’s time and knowledge is valuable, and you are privileged to have it. In short – don’t waste their time (or yours)! Jo said she would always go into a meeting with her mentor with ‘a list of questions as long as my arm’. Before you meet, prepare questions, a list of areas you’re stuck on, financial plans, anything that you need advice on to discuss with your mentor.
It’s personal, AND it’s business.
A mentor and mentoree may be very different personalities, or very similar – either way it’s important to find a mentor you can connect with on a personal level as well as professionally. This will allow you to be 100% authentic and honest in your discussions with them and help your mentor to support you in whatever way is necessary.
Have you launched a business, and are you looking for a mentor to guide you through the entrepreneurial journey? Or would you like to offer your knowledge and experiences as a mentor? Join the Rare Birds Mentoring Program and you will be matched with a entrepreneur from the Rare Birds global community.