Navy Women’s Expert Mentor Program available to all

The Expert Mentor Program , created by Women & Leadership Australia (WLA) to support the Navy in their gender equity work, is now available for all people in Australia who wish to contribute to gender equity in their industry and organisation.

The program was created in partnership with the Royal Australian Navy, as part of their initiatives to support more women to take on entry level, middle and senior leadership roles within the organisation.

LEUT Kim Green from the Directorate of Navy Culture, said of the program, “the Navy Women’s Mentor Program links Navy personnel of all ranks, categories, primary qualifications and experience, from across the country through a virtual mentoring framework where the support and development of all Navy people is a priority. Navy views mentorship as a key enabler to retention and capability and as Navy continues to grow our female participation rate, the mentoring program is seen as a key enabler for gender equality and future gender parity.

“The inaugural first round of the Navy Women’s Mentor Program was well received with over 200 personnel registering for mentorship. As the mentoring program matures, we are seeing an increased demand for future participation which is a fantastic outcome for Navy and our people.”

The program has now been adapted to assist current and aspiring mentors in all industries to maximise their approach, in order to provide meaningful professional and personal growth to their mentees.

Suzi Finkelstein, CEO of WLA, said of the initiative; “We have done so much meaningful work with the Navy. The impact of this program inspired us to adapt this program for all industries. We want to ensure women across all industries and sectors can benefit from this best-practice mentoring program.

“Mentoring is a powerful tool for enabling gender equity and breaking down stereotypes. Good mentors have no agenda other than assisting their mentees in reaching their own goals. They aim to provide a safe, confidential space for their mentees to explore new ideas, and an unbiased sounding board to test their assumptions.

“And for the mentor, the relationship can build confidence, provide opportunities for self-reflection, and generate a sense of satisfaction in supporting emerging women leaders.​

“The Expert Mentor Program imbues mentors with the skills required to facilitate learning, connection and advancement for the mentee.”

Chief Petty Officer Zoe Mack, who participated in the Navy Women’s Mentor Program said that “throughout working with my mentor I have gained insight into different opportunities available to me that I hadn’t previously considered. My mentor encouraged and supported me to tread my own path and facilitated a space for me to be unapologetic with my ambitions. Discussions with my mentor have propelled me, shaping my career into something that fulfils me and helped me find strength in non-traditional paths.

“The Navy Women’s Mentor Program has not only assisted me in having clarity of my own professional career path, but has also given me the confidence and the skills to support the younger generation of Navy personnel to develop theirs.”

The Expert Mentor Program is a one day, online, immersive program. Facilitated by Women & Leadership Australia, participants will spend the day learning from WLA’s expert leadership facilitators and subject matter experts. You can see more about the program and enrol here.