This week we launched our Ambassador events program in Sydney, celebrating the learnings and experiences of some of the city’s brightest entrepreneurs and thought leaders.
Rare Birds Global Ambassadors Therese Tarlinton (general manager Australia, BuddyBid), Phil Hayes-St Clair (co-founder and CEO, AirShr) and Rhonda Brighton-Hall (leading HR expert) shared their experiences on the importance of mentorship and how entrepreneurs think differently. Here are the top four takeaways:
1. Mentors are essential to your growth
Rhonda Brighton-Hall emphasised the necessity of mentors to elevate your business and personal growth saying: “Mentors are the only thing that breaks you out of the swim lane you are born in – it’s such an important thing to get right”.
Phil Hayes-St Clair believes that, “mentoring is essential” and it should be an obligation for entrepreneurs to commit to and “one you should feel pretty good about doing”.
Based on Therese Tarlinton’s experience of being mentored, she says a great one will, “ask really good questions” with the understanding that you likely know the answers, “you just need the right prompts to dig it out”. She says that she goes to different mentors for different things, whether it is financial questions, for support through a challenging time or to celebrate a win.
2. Figure out the worst thing that can happen then go for it
Therese Tarlinton’s advice to young people is often, “what’s the worst thing that can happen?” She says she took this advice on herself and had a backup plan that involved taking a job in marketing if everything backfired in her business. She says being an entrepreneur is, “going to be a hundred times harder than you think, but it will be a thousand times better when you are actually living it” and so you should just have a go.
3. People want you to succeed, so ask for their help
Rhonda Brighton-Hall says: “I think 90 percent of the world are really great people who really want you to win, and you can rely on them and they can rely on you – and it makes the journey so much more fun”.
She says all you need to do is pick up the phone and ask for a hand, because, “there are so many people who say, ‘that’s awesome, how can I help?’” and this makes you resolve problems quicker and in a smarter way than you could ever do on your own.
4. The future plan can be defined or undefined
Phil Hayes-St Clair and Therese Tarlinton have different outlooks on the future of their businesses, highlighting that every entrepreneur is different and there is no single roadmap.
Phil Hayes-St Clair says he doesn’t know what the next three years will look like for AirShr: “We’ve plotted a very different path which has never been done before and strategy doesn’t cut it in that environment”.
He says he knows, “the product we have today is not the product we’ll have in three years time” and adds that the team understands their vision: “We want to make it insanely easy for someone to remember life”.
Therese Tarlinton, on the other hand, knows “exactly where we’ll be” in the next two to three years and has a clear vision for BuddyBid, including what resources they need, who they should partner with and how they will go global. With this clear strategy, “everything we do every single day is to get us towards this vision,” she says.
Do you need a mentor to help you develop your own entrepreneurial mindset and business? Contact Rare Birds community leader Sarah Coull at firstname.lastname@example.org for details about joining the Rare Birds Mentoring Program.