Steering away from the typical networking event offer of filtered coffee, mini Danishes and a torrent of repetitive sales pitches, Soar Collective's focus is on building a community of women who by sharing their successes and failures, can learn from and empower each other.
In May 2014, founder Jess Jones saw the need to create a comfortable, open environment allowing the women attending to be brutally honest with each other as well as identifying collaborative opportunities. Jess was sick of attending events where guests seemed to be competing for a prize for who was the busiest. She and a friend discussed this in depth over coffee, and that there was something lacking in the women’s networking market. They were frustrated at the current offer as it didn’t resonate with them. Less than a week later, the first Soar Collective event was held in Mornington with 12 local business women attending.
Jess encourages her attendees to have a ‘no bull approach’ when introducing themselves to other women. She says ‘it’s absolutely ok to say “I’ve had a really bad day” or “sales aren’t good at the moment and I don’t know how to fix it.” The need for authenticity is imperative at the Soar Collective events as the founder explains ‘you need to break through whatever is holding you back from being your best self. If you’re not being genuine about your business and who you really are, how can you expect to truly connect with anyone and identify opportunities for improvement?’
Soar Collective has grown through social media and word of mouth, to a supportive and inspiring community of women in business in the Mornington Peninsula region of Victoria and launches in Berwick in February. Throughout 2016 Soar Collective will be running 4 business workshops, 6 After Dark events in each region with a variety of inspiring presenters, including a celebration of International Women's Day in March plus the inaugural full day conference and cocktail event SoarCon in November. Soar Collective is launching a third location mid-2016, so stay tuned!