We recently heard first hand from experienced Business Leaders and Mentors as they discussed the strategies they’re implementing for business continuity in this time of uncertainty. Huge thanks as well to Ashleigh Camm for facilitating and our mentors and experts for their insight and wisdom-sharing in the panel discussion.

Please find below links to below to each section if you would like to recap on any of the information shared or if you registered but unfortunately missed the session.

For more information on our mentor program and how our mentors can help you through these extraordinary times click here

Introducing our panelists:

Dr. James Cowley,
SBP Co-founder

Murray Richardson
Chair, SBP

Jane Laverty,
Regional Manager
Northern Rivers Business NSW

Zach Rook
COO, Subpod

James, can you please share with us what the cycle of a downturn / recession / depression can look like, and can you help us to understand where you think we are now?

Dr James Cowley, SBP Co-founder – Bio
Over most of James’ working life he has set up from scratch businesses related to the commercialisation of knowledge. This has cut across Business, Health, Education, Corporate and Government fields. They have been both successful and profitably sustainable organisations with strong teams. Some of the organisations are now over 30+ years old and some over 20+ years old. They have been privileged to advise the most senior levels of Governments and Corporations and be part of projects, crises, changes which have impacted whole populations.

If we are entering this period of essential needs versus wants and being funded by sales above all else, Sonia, what products do you expect will be selling, or how do we know what customers will be buying?

Sonia Friedrich, Strategic Consultant, Mentor & Keynote Speaker – Bio
Sonia is a leading expert in the application of behavioural economics in business. She aims to teach insights that can begin to be applied within 24-48 hours, for clients to measure results on their bottom line within 1- 2 months. Sonia lives in Byron Bay Australia. Her extensive corporate career spans more than 25 years working in Executive Roles in advertising and marketing, mostly with Fortune 500 Companies. She was the General Manager of Grey Healthcare Advertising, Sydney before establishing her own consultancy.

If we are in businesses where we have products that are wants or even potentially based on wants or are discretionary, Murray, what are the key things we should be considering now, given the likely longevity of the period ahead of us?

Murray Richardson, Chair, SBP – Bio
Murray is the Chair of Sourdough Business Pathways and has extensive experience in the food and agricultural sectors having worked for some of the world’s largest food companies. He has established a broad understanding of the food market and the emerging trends that will shape the future of the food industry both locally and globally. From a sales and distribution background, Murray has several businesses based in the region and has developed a strong capability in defining business strategy, establishing clear focus and working with key people to build momentum to effect change.

Jane, do you expect there will be enough government support to prop up businesses that might be touch and go? And do you think this is a solution business owners and sole traders can rely on?

Jane Laverty, Regional Manager, Northern Rivers Business NSW – Bio
Jane Laverty is a passionate and experienced strategist with a depth of experience in economic development, stakeholder engagement, project management, marketing and business/public advocacy. Jane is currently the Regional Manager Northern Rivers with the NSW Business Chamber and will celebrate 14 years in the region this year working alongside an amazing group of like minded and passionate professionals who believe in the importance of creating jobs and investment in regional Australia. Prior to starting with the NSW Business Chamber Jane worked extensively across the Northern Rivers with business and industry clients, Local and State Government and the not for profit sector.

If we aren’t going to rely on government support and we are planning to stay in business, Zach, can you please share with us some strategies and tactics of how we can best focus our time and resources?

Zach Rook, COO, Subpod – Bio
Zach is a Startup Mentor and the Chief Operating Officer of Subpod, the Ultimate Composting System business founded and operated from Byron Bay, Australia. Zach came to Subpod as an avid entrepreneur who has successfully built and exited multiple service businesses, led fast-growth businesses from $0 to several million in turnover in under 3 years, and managed business turnarounds from positions of insolvency to profitability.

Opportunities – if we take a moment before we conclude to share some emerging re-imagining, what are some of the opportunities that we think could be born from this period?

Key Takeaways – if you have one piece of wisdom that you wanted to share with the audience to emphasise what’s already been said or something new, what would it be?

We hope you found value and support from the wisdom shared by our Sourdough community of experts and mentors. If you are needing additional support during these challenging economic times here are some ways you can stay connected and supported by SBP: