Mentors. From Parents to Successful Entrepreneurs.

Ché O'Donnell-Gibson
November 4, 2015

Starting up Alike, I have predominantly looked to my parents when I have faced difficult decisions. I haven’t had the money to pay an experienced professional consultant so my parents were my best first option and I am extremely grateful for the advice they have given.

As time goes on, I appreciate more and more the advice of people with experience. Whether it is my parents, business mentors, experts I outsource work to or members of Alike.

My father is an entrepreneur at heart. He lives in Havelock North with his partner Francie where they run several small businesses. They run Hawkes Bay’s largest window cleaning company, a Boutique (self catering) Accommodation business and have recently purchased a commercial property as an investment. He is not a stereotypical “rich” person but to me he lives a very rich life as he has what a lot of people never get – time. He has designed a lifestyle for himself over the years that works for him and his advice is really appreciated.

Mum has worked lots of different jobs over the years (hospitality, real estate, administration) and completed a BA at Victoria University as a mature student. She has currently been working at Plunket NZ head office for approximately 8 years. Mum has no direct business experience on paper so would seem the least likely to give good advice but this has far from been the case – backed up by this Economist Report. Mum has been there for me through the tough times more than any body else with words of wisdom and logical encouragement so has been a tremendous asset to keeping Alike moving forward.

At the beginning of this year I wanted to take some pressure off my parents and looked elsewhere for a mentor. I registered with Business Mentors NZ and have had some great meetings with my allocated mentor for a very cost effective rate. The benefits for me have been confidence in my own decisions, an ear to bounce ideas off, management tips and a fresh perspective that isn’t from my family.

I now want to step up another level and am seeking someone/people with specific industry knowledge so Alike can be even better prepared for change and growth. As Research prove, top performing startups have had successful entrepreneurs as mentors. This is my new direction. I’ll let you know how it goes.



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