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Credits: EO

A volunteer-run mentorship program for Melbourne-based F&B Startups 

Entrepreneurs’ Organization (EO) in Australia has created a volunteer-run mentorship programme in collaboration with Melbourne’s North Food Group. 

Mentees in the programme will receive twelve months of free mentorship from members of the Entrepreneurs’ Organization, with mentors’ enterprises generating a minimum of US$1 million in revenue.

The 360 Mentorship Program Pilot is currently underway in Melbourne, with intentions to expand it across Australia in the future. The existing mentor programme of the non-profit, peer-to-peer network has been active for years, allowing EO members to obtain guidance. 

Additionally,  the pilot is focused on Food & Beverage due to the collaboration with Melbourne’s North Food Group, but the group is looking to expand to other industries after the pilot.

Program objectives

Entrepreneurs’ Organization 360 Mentor Program is a structured 12-month mentorship program run by volunteer members of EO looking to support local start-ups and give back to the local business community. 

In terms of structure, mentors and mentees attend a training session on how it will run and how to get the most out of mentoring, followed by monthly sessions covering goal setting, challenges and how to overcome them. The program aims to impart years of business guidance to young, rapid-growth start-ups with huge potential. 

Am I eligible?

The pilot program is being run in partnership with members of Melbourne’s North Food Group, based on the criteria :

  • Have a business with a product
  • Have demonstrated sales and revenue
  • Have a financial turnover of $250,000K + and aren’t eligible for the Accelerator Program
  • Be working full-time in the business

“Entrepreneurs’ Organizations 360 Mentorship Pilot Program is our way of giving back and uplifting other small business owners in our local community,” said Costa Vasili, founder and CEO of Ethnolink, a national language translation services provider.

“As a program mentor, I’ve been working with Ben Circosta on his traditional Italian chilli business, Bippi. It’s been an incredibly rewarding experience to give back to the community, particularly as both of our business ideas were inspired by our migrant backgrounds.”

Ben Circosta, Mentee, says, “It’s an amazing experience to learn from a successful entrepreneur such as Costa, and I’ve immediately been able to improve not just business processes but also personally, as a business owner.”

The twelve-month pilot program focuses on goal setting and resolving challenges as they arise, with monthly catchups averaging a couple of hours each month. Concluding in 2023, the goal is to roll it out in other states next year. Entrepreneurs’ Organization has independent chapters operating in VIC, NSW, QLD, SA and WA. 

The not-for-profit, peer-to-peer network’s existing mentor program has been running for years, allowing EO members to receive mentorship. 360 Mentorship Program is aptly named for completing the circle of providing mentorship to early-stage entrepreneurs, giving them the support to grow and flourish. 

Mentee businesses in the program include Josh’s Rainbow Eggs (2019 Victorian Young Achiever Award for Environmental Sustainability) and Bippi, an authentic Italian chilli, to name a couple. 

More here  http://www.eoaustralia.org/

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Yajush Gupta

Yajush Gupta

Yajush is a journalist at Dynamic Business. He previously worked with Reuters as a business correspondent and holds a postgrad degree in print journalism.

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