Mercedes Mentor Circles
How They Work
The Mercedes Mentor Circles are free for members. Six participants will be selected by each mentor through an application process.
The circles will meet no less than monthly over six months. Mentors will act as guides and provide support and feedback for participants who will be expected to play an active role in the circles. Each mentee will benefit from a one on one session with their mentor throughout the program as well as have the opportunity to participate in networking events.
Mentoring has been recognised as an effective way of professionally and personally developing for decades. When you connect with a successful and inspirational leader, that mentor can greatly assist you to navigate through issues, challenges and progression with ease by sharing their experiences and knowledge with you in addition to encouragement, support and guidance. The circles will not only give you access to the knowledge and experience of your mentor, but you will be able to collaborate with five other participants.
Session runs from May-November. Mentoring requires a high level of trust and commitment to the process and a sincere focus on learning and development. In return mentees will:
- share personal and professional experiences and learnings
- discover and explore new perspectives
- be encouraged to think strategically and holistically about business and life
- receive guidance on challenges
- be supported and coached on how to overcome barriers or push themselves further
- increase their effectiveness through learning
- review and renew their goals and visions
How to Apply
If you are ready to leave your comfort zone and share your challenges and experiences, we want you to apply. It is important that all applicants understand the level of commitment required, in order to get the most out of the Mercedes Mentor Circles.
Our mentors are volunteers and mentees are expected to be flexible. 100% participation at no less than six monthly meetings is required (in person). Each mentor selects the six participants for their circle. Two people from the same organisation or industry will not be selected for the same circle as this can impact on a participant’s ability to be completely honest and transparent in discussions.
Complete the Mercedes Mentor Circle Application Form. Mentors will make their selection and you will be notified of the outcome of your application.
Applications close April 25, 2022.
Applications are now closed.
Breaking out of your Comfort Zone
Creating your Business Vision
Fay Barker has had a long career in business and Corporate strategy. During the period 1984 to 2001 Fay was the Managing Director of a privately-owned company which she had commenced as a start-up until its sale to a multi-national company in 2001. Fay would attribute her current knowledge to the experience she attained during this on the job training. “This was a remarkable journey and taught me many aspects of business I was not prepared for.”
Fay was a great advocate for business in Townsville as the first female President of the Townsville Chamber of Commerce.
Fay reinvented her career as an independent company director giving her time to many not-for-profits as well as serving on a number of government advisory boards and public company boards in Townsville, including the Townsville Port Authority, The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, James Cook University, The Breakwater Island Trust and many others as an independent director.
Between 2004 – 2008 Fay also served as a Townsville City Councillor, was a director of RACQ for 16 years until her retirement in 2018 and more recently Chair of the RACQ Foundation until 2020. Fay also chaired The Townsville Hospital Foundation for many years as well as the Benefactors of the Good Shepherd Nursing Home.
Fay has for the past 12 years and currently chairs the Brisbane Group of the CEO Circle, which draws CEO’s from Queensland, Melbourne and Sydney for roundtable discussions to provide perspective and enhance the CEO participant’s journey as well as contributing to Group strategies and well-being.
“I love being virtually retired, and having the time to spend with women who are growing their corporate careers, irrespective of what that looks like.”
Leading with Intention & Purpose
Coaching and Mentoring
Amber is the very proud Principal of St Patrick’s College Townsville, an independent, Catholic girl’s secondary college, established by the Sisters of Mercy. She is intentional and relational in her leadership approach, and deeply understands the importance of being a strong role model for both staff and students. Amber is unwavering in her commitment to empower young women to dare to imagine a future where they possess the confidence to speak up, stand out and take charge. Creating an environment, where young women are compelled to have the courage of their convictions, is her passion. As a leader, she inspires the young women of the College to challenge the status quo and break down gender barriers, and in doing so, leave the College as confident, hopeful, purposeful leaders and agents of change who demonstrate ambition and compassion.
It is Amber’s privilege to lead a dynamic and joy-filled community, and she remains committed to ensuring the College continues to grow and flourish. She is a woman of great passion and integrity, and brings with her an optimism and zest for life.
I began my career in the banking and finance sector working for Barclays Bank, Bank of Queensland and Queensland Teachers Credit Union.
I then completed my Bachelor of Education at QUT, double majoring in Accounting and Business Management and have worked in the independent schooling sector since July of 2000. I took on a leadership role from my second year of teaching and have enjoyed leading various portfolios and teams throughout my 22 years in the education sector. I relocated with my family to Townsville in 2016, joining St Patrick’s College Townsville as the Deputy Principal and since 2020 have led the community as the Principal. The role of a Principal in an independent school is incredibly interesting, dynamic and highly strategic. I am directly accountable to a Board of Governance, who delegates responsibility to me as the Principal for effectively and efficiently managing the operations of the College.
What type of mentee would benefit the most:
I genuinely love inspiring a strong vision of empowering women through education and have a particular passion in coaching and mentoring, to build effective teams. I have been described as being highly relational, intentional and purpose-driven in my leadership style.
Early career leaders or aspiring leaders with direct responsibility for building effective teams might benefit most from my experience.
Finding Your Voice – confidence / communication / marketing
Where do I start? Developing concepts and taking the leap
Taking your business to the next level and staying relevant in a changing Landscape
Joanna Murray is an occupational therapist who has been running her own business for over 13 years. During this time she has grown from being a sole trader to now running a successful medium sized business. She is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, has an MBA, a Master of Public Health and is a Board Director for a National Association.
Joanna recently merged her business with another local allied health practice and is now leading a team of nearly 40 people across 5 locations in North Queensland. Joanna has developed a variety of critical entrepreneurial skills to ensure that her business has stayed contemporary and relevant in changing business landscapes. Her skills include governance, strategy, marketing, people and culture, communication, stakeholder relationships, innovation, and technology. She has successfully applied for state and federal grants and funding and has won several business and leadership awards.
Joanna has experience in working with and supporting businesses from concept stage, startups and established organisations looking to take the next steps in business.
I started as a sole trader in my study in my home and worked on weekends and evenings whilst working full time as a lecturer at JCU. My caseload grew really quickly due to the personalised service I was offering and my ability to create strong relationships with key partners and stakeholders in the local area. I quickly grew out of the space and needed help! With the support from my husband I took the leap and jumped off the branch and quite my full time job and worked in the business. I rented a small space within another allied health practice and set myself up with a filing cabinet, a desk and a laptop.
There was never any intention to take over the world at that point – I just wanted to do a job that I enjoyed and not be constrained by working for someone else. I just simply wanted to enjoy going to work every day. The more that time went on the more interested I became in business, strategy and governance. I read lots of books, went to lots of workshops and undertook further study in business because, after all, I had no formal training in business and knew that I needed some!
I quickly realised that my passion was as an entrepreneur – I loved the blue sky thinking, making impossible promises and watching them materialise. I loved the risks of jumping into something and working bloody hard to make it work. It didn’t always work but I learnt from every mistake that I made and enjoyed the highs when it did work! I loved the rush of the risk and the satisfaction from building a fantastic service for our community.
In 2021 I merged my business with another local allied health practice which has been the most challenging but exciting risk so far! I’m still on the rollercoaster and loving it! Watch this space 😊
What type of mentee would benefit the most:
- Some with a concept
- Someone who is stuck in a rut and needing some help to move forwards
- Someone who is in overwhelm and does not know what the next step is
- Someone who has an idea but unsure how to execute
- Someone who needs to reach stakeholders / customers
- Someone who needs help to ‘find their voice’ (communication, confidence)
Grow your own Big Little Business
Creating a ‘values based’ business strategy – find your purpose
Roles, Goals and Process – the keys to managing a high performing team
Jayne is one of Townsville’s most prominent business women and has been actively involved in the local business community for the past 25+ years. Jayne built her group of businesses from start up through to a $10million turnover, before selling to a large multinational company. At the same time that she was building her businesses, she had a parallel career on a variety of boards from little not-for-profits through to big billion dollar organisations. Now a full time business growth and strategy consultant and author, Jayne applies Big Business learnings to Little Businesses (like yours) to help them grow! If you are a business owner or in a leadership role at work – and you are excited by growth, then come and join other like-minded women in this mentoring group.
Jayne has been a mentor in both formal and informal mentoring programs for 20 years including Townsville Business Women’s Circle, Townsville Emerging Leaders, Mentoring for Growth and the Small Business Recovery Centre.