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Mentorship and friendship go hand in hand for business mogul

Bwa Mentorship   May 17 (002)

INSPIRING MENTOR: Businesswomen’s Association members, from left, Cassandra Lascelles, Sabiha Moosa and Heather Dutton (BWAPE vice-chairlady) were among those inspired by hotelier Adrian Gardiner’s advice on the value of mentorship.

“If you are hungry for success and want to make your business idea work, simply find someone who has done it well before you and learn all you can from them!” was distinguished hotelier and conservationist Adrian Gardiner’s uncomplicated advice to those attending a Businesswomen’s Association Port Elizabeth ‘Hurdles and Help’ event in the city this week.

Addressing a packed audience of BWA PE members on the subject of mentorship, Gardiner said numerous people had impacted significantly on his life, and that if he had to define mentorship in one word it would be: friendship.

“Collaboration, friendship, exchange of ideas, a sense of family… these are what have contributed to my success and these are the relationships I like to nurture with my managers,” Gardiner said.

Citing his relationships with prominent international business leaders such as Dr Ian Player, Britain’s Prince Charles, Sol Kerzner and Graham Beck, Gardiner told how they and others had influenced his diverse and exciting career – from a Spar wholesaler, Penguin Pools, transport and crane hire business owner, to the internationally acclaimed conservationist and founding owner of the Mantis Collection boutique hotel group of today.

“One person can change a life. If each one of us, using the time, abilities and resources we have available, chose just one person to mentor every couple of years, what a difference that could make! With our diverse cultures, we can add significantly to each other’s values and lives we lead.

“We’ve got a lot of work to do in assisting those who had none of the advantages of the previously sheltered population. I’m sure that the women of the BWA will play an important part in that.”

Michelle Brown, chairperson of the BWA-PE said the association was privileged to be able to tap into the expertise of Gardiner, who also personally mentors some of the members involved in its renowned mentorship programme.
“The BWA’s mentorship programme is free to all our members and one of the most valuable reasons for being involved with our organisation. Friendship, connections and collaborations – all mentioned by Adrian and pivotal to business success – are integral to the opportunities presented within the BWA,” said Brown.

“So too, are opportunities to pay forward what we are privileged to learn and to gain. The BWA PE is one of the most active and dynamic of the BWASA branches, with thriving community programmes that include our sanitary towel collections for school girls as well as the matric workshops, all aimed at empowering generations of women to come.”

For more information about BWASA, visit the website: www.bwasa.co.za or the Facebook page at BWA Port Elizabeth.

Issued by: Michelle Brown, Chairperson Business Women’s Association of South Africa – PE Branch, Telephone: 041-367-1104, email: pe@bwasa.co.za, www.bwasa.co.za/branch/port-elizabeth

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