Out of the Box

How Mentoring is More Than a Career Opportunity


Ever felt your work life is bit like walking with your eyes closed through unfamiliar territory? That’s how young mum and business owner Natalie Scanlon felt when she applied for a competition in Cosmopolitan magazine to win time with a mentor.

The mentor: Christine Black, head of public affairs and communications, Coca‑Cola Australia

A self confessed news hound, the first thing Christine does when she wakes up is check social media for what’s trending in the news. According to Christine, the more she knows about what’s happening, the better chance she has to play a meaningful part in it.

The mentee: Natalie Scanlon, founder, Written Communications

The first thing Natalie does in the morning is wake up at 5am to her two-year-old ‘alarm clock’, her daughter. Natalie works while her daughter is at daycare or sleeping, and finishes up at midnight. Natalie is driven by her need to show her daughter what hard work and success looks like.

The purpose: empowering people through fresh perspectives and great advice

What perspectives can professionals bring to really help women as they're thinking about their career paths, and their lives? According to Christine, mentoring is key to helping people imagine and plan their futures.

“Coca‑Cola is doing a lot globally and a lot locally on gender equality through our programme called 5by20, which is a global programme to empower five million women by 2020. One of the things we do is mentoring young women and provide skills, expertise, and knowledge to help them when they're thinking about what they want to do when they leave school,” Christine said.

“Natalie is a very positive, thoughtful young woman who has started her own business, and talking to her I felt rewarded by her fresh perspective and her openness and positivity. We talked about a number of topics from confidence in yourself, confidence in your ability, the way that sometimes people tend to box themselves in. “We talked about a number of impactful topics and I’m really excited for the mentoring journey we have ahead.”

Interested in being a mentor? Find out more about MyRoad, the mentoring program for high school students pioneered by Coca‑Cola Australia and Beacon Foundation.

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