Case study four — Mia Mia Landscapes

Christopher Robinson of Mia Mia Landscapes had a successful landscape construction and maintenance business with 3 employees but wanted to move away from typical landscaping projects and focus on his passion - designing and constructing contemporary Australian gardens incorporating sustainable design principles.

Chris applied for a mentor through the Mentor Partners Program and was matched up with Program mentor David Lennon.

David helped Chris to realise that the maintenance work could provide a steady income while he grew the design business and that he could subcontract other qualified tradesmen to undertake the construction elements. This then allowed Chris to spend more time with clients and raise awareness in relation to sustainable design principles.

By the end of the mentoring period, under David’s guidance, Chris had drafted his business plan with specific goals and timeframes and had begun executing the actions in the plan. He engaged the services of a marketing consultant to help him promote the new side of the business and he won several landscaping jobs that involved creating gardens with sustainable design principles.

Chris is very grateful for the assistance he received from the Program. “I felt very comfortable being open and honest with David and my respect for him grew as our mentoring relationship developed,” said Chris. “David’s feedback and encouragement gave me the confidence that I was on the right track and the confidence that I could change the focus if the need arose.”

David enjoyed mentoring Chris. “Mentoring Chris was particularly rewarding because the match was perfect and it was a joy to see him conquer in 6 months, the same issues I had grappled with for six years!” said David. “This program allows business owners like Chris to benefit from the experience of business mentors — including the mistakes we have made — and I hope as a mentor I can continue to make business more enjoyable and successful for mentorees.”