Dynamic trio Navigates Local Business
What do a successful business owner and strategy expert, a senior rural finance professional and a marketing guru have in common? They’re part of a new-look team helping Western Downs businesses develop their ideas and accelerate growth.
For more than 12 months, the Shell’s QGC Business Navigator program has been assisting local businesses to turn their ideas into reality. Business Navigator, delivered by Toowoomba and Surat Basin Enterprise, is a free program to support regional economic development by helping business owners implement new or growth ideas.
The program has been enhanced to include a new lead business coach and a marketing expert - joining long-time coach and local champion Suzie Wood.
New lead business coach Ariane de Rooy is a business improvement and growth specialist with twenty five years’ experience in the energy, construction, government, not-for-profit, sport, tourism and hospitality sectors. She comes directly from global accounting and advisory firm Grant Thornton and has also built and sold a number of successful business from scratch.
Ariane describes herself as an unmistakable optimist who loves to collaborate. She knows what it takes to get a business off the ground and is looking forward to hearing the innovative ideas brought forward.
“There are many people in the Western Downs with innovative ideas that have huge potential for commercialisation and success. We’d love to hear from you, and help you on your journey,” Ariane said.
“Regional people are persistent and resilient, qualities shared with the great entrepreneurs.”
Marketing expert Ailsa Cass has also joined the Business Navigator team. She brings wide-ranging experience in marketing planning and delivery, websites, branding, traditional media and social media. Having lived in Chinchilla for the past 10 years, her coaching services and experience are underpinned by a great understanding of the community and local challenges.
Ailsa says she’s looking forward to taking a hands-on approach with digital and traditional marketing to help people reach their business goals.
“Assistance I can offer our clients include, establishing an online presence, building a business brand, exploring new markets or gaining media coverage,” Ailsa said.
Ariane and Ailsa join veteran Suzie Wood, who has been a business coach with the program since inception. Suzie is a chartered accountant and provides client advice, coaching and hands-on assistance, with a particular focus on strategy, planning, financial management and funding. Suzie has over 20 years’ experience, most recently as a rural financial counsellor across the Western Downs. These roles, as well as her involvement in the family farming enterprise, have provided her with a particular affinity for agricultural and family-owned businesses.
Suzie said in its first year Shell’s QGC Business Navigator had assisted 45 businesses across 20 industries.
“I’m very excited to be able to offer an even wider range of assistance to program participants with the expansion of our team,” Suzie said.
Between them, this team of passionate women has more than 60 years’ experience across all aspects of business. They’re here to help. If you have a business growth idea and would like to find out more about Shell’s QGC Business Navigator and the support on offer, please go to www.NavigatorWesternDowns.com.au
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