Maree is a facilitator and business development consultant. Her business, Belay Consulting focusses on strategic business development through facilitated workshops, business and personal coaching and succession planning for farmers and family businesses.

“Most people know the answers. They just might need some help to work things out or to prioritise and develop an Action Plan. That is what I help them to do.”
Maree says, “I offer ‘fresh eyes and ears’ to clients and their operations. Together, we work on challenges and identify opportunities.”
Maree has extensive experience in, and is passionate about, people development and product development – in particular in agriculture, hospitality and tourism, as well as community and regional development.
Having lived for most of her life in regional and remote WA as a primary producer and tourism business owner Maree comments, “I feel our rural women are often the ‘glue’ that “holds our regional communities together”

So often, rural women are busy looking after everyone else. In recent years, programs for men’s health and business mentoring programs have been developed. It’s time something was provided for our hard working rural women.”
Maree’s program will provide a facilitated workshops to allow participants (possibly even future and current leaders) to explore themselves and to build their confidence, to help define what else they need and to give insights into what they could offer.
“The program will help people identify and build their own special abilities and their potential – regardless of education or circumstance – and most importantly have some fun along the way!” says Maree.
Maree suggests, “The first tier of the program is primarily about nurturing and developing our future leaders, by providing an enabling environment for our young rural women, who are potentially tomorrow’s leaders, to grow and develop.“
“A second tier to the program is to provide an environment to continue to energise and engage todays rural women, by providing opportunity for them to continue to learn and grow, to re-charge and to gather ideas and to learn how to implement new ideas and innovation.

A pilot program will be developed and delivered to a group of women (and eventually men) in rural areas. The program will enable participants to learn and grow through:

1. Developing individual talents and career pathways, including personal grooming, business etiquette & career development
2. Developing self-awareness and self-confidence and dealing with stress
3. Communication and negotiation
4. Public speaking and media skills

Maree says, “my underlying aim is to raise the profile, value and significance of primary production – from the inside out and the outside in. We have an incredible pool of talented and innovative people working very hard. We need to tell our story and tell it well.”
“I will use the RIRDC award to leverage and tell how good we are at primary production story as well as I can, as often as I can.”
Christine.thompson@agric.wa.gov.au

 

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