Boost your business with a mentor

22 August 2023
Development West Coast
In business, making well-informed decisions and overcoming challenges are vital to success. DWC aims to make this journey smoother by introducing small business owners to mentors through Business Mentors New Zealand (BMNZ).

Whether you're taking your first entrepreneurial steps or running an established business, BMNZ's mentoring service can equip you with the right tools to navigate your business journey effectively.

Local businesses are taking advantage of the service, such as Raewyn Fern, who runs Buller Fabric & Fiber. In addition to managing a physical store in Westport, she operates the online store, Knit Sew Quilt NZ, serving customers across New Zealand.

Raewyn says she loves working in the community. “I know just about every woman in the district.”

She says having her business mentor is like having to report to a managing director or a board.

“It keeps me honest. It makes me do my financial planning, calls me out on any woolly thinking, and is a good sounding board which is nonjudgmental and not local, so we get a different perspective.”

“Having a business mentor has helped remind me of the management skills that I learned in my previous career so that I actually do proper business analysis,” she said. “I do strengths and weaknesses. We look at new income streams, which is a major part of the business for the retail recession. Adding income streams so that we can stay in business and keep growing and making sure that those are well-planned out and fit within the scope.”

“A couple of weeks ago we were saying that we would be succeeding online when we go for an order from the Chatham Islands. And then that weekend we got an order from the Chatham Islands,” Raewyn said. “We're happy to be able to supply craft supplies all over New Zealand to absolutely everywhere where people live.”

Whether you're looking to start a new venture or expand your current operations, a fresh perspective can make all the difference.

For a one-off registration fee of $295 + GST, businesses gain up to 12 months' access to a business mentor. These mentors share their knowledge and experience, assisting to advance business capability, capacity, and sustainability.

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