Women in Drinks celebrated the conclusion of a successful 2018 Mentoring Program last night.
The Mentoring Program, now in its second year, is an initiative by The Drinks Association in conjunction with Serendis Leadership Consulting.
This year, mentors and mentees from Australian Vintage, Bacardi Martini, Brown Forman, Campari, Casella, Coca Coca Amatil, Lion, Coles Liquor, Diageo, Moet Hennessy and Pernod Ricard took part in the program.
It is a measure of how well the program has been received by the drinks industry that four mentors returned for the second year, while two launch program mentees became mentors.
The cocktail finale was held in tandem with The Drinks Association's annual Chairman's Drinks at the Palais Room at Luna Park.
Women in Drinks Chair Jennifer Collins (above left) noted: "This mentoring program and all that it stands for - the industry that we are becoming, the people that are within it, both senior leaders and emerging leaders - it's all worth celebrating.
"Many of the participants - both mentors and mentees - have reported seeing results in their performance from what they have learned on the program and how they are changing their leadership behaviours."
Collins said three comments in the feedback given by the mentors had stuck with her.
>> "Great initiative and great response from the industry."
>> "Excellent, but it must achieve more to directly impact the problems of sexual discrimination from top down. Not bottom up."
>> "It is working, but we need to do more."
Collins added: "So whose role is it to do more? That rests with everyone in this room. In the words of Gandhi - we must become the change that we want to see."
She also revealed that Gandhi's powerful words will be the theme for the Women in Drinks 2019 International Women's Day event.
Collins urged mentees to "pay it forward" to "create that ripple effect".
"This is a community and you are part of it," she explained. "You have not only your mentor but the other 19 people that have shared this experience on the Mentoring Program and there can be no network stronger than that.
"And while you may not know it yet, that network can become everything that you always wanted, but never knew that you actually needed."