2 minutes with a Mentor: meet Becky Kent-Perchalla

Becky Kent-Perchalla

We sat down with Becky, a Senior Manager from Travel Associates (Flight Centre Travel Group) with over nineteen years of experience. Having been a mentor since the start of their program, she has had the pleasure of mentoring three employees.

She has formed wonderful relationships with her mentees, even taking a bottle of bubbles and flowers to celebrate their final day of training.

She tells us about her experience:

I hope to be able to positively influence some of the new generations in our company.

My main goal was to be able to assist and guide new consultants in their role and be a sounding post when needed – to help them develop all aspects of their personal business when sometimes they only are focussed on their finances – our role is so much more than that.

Becky went on to tell us about what she thinks sets the Flight Centre program apart from others and why she joined the program.

Our company has a lot of unique features that are simply best passed on by those within the company.

I like to help where I can – mentoring is ultimately an investment in our company and it also keeps me on my toes and provides me with new perspectives. Even though I’m in my 19th year with the company, I remember bursts of my first 2 years like it was yesterday!

I also think that Travel Associates, as a brand, had a lot of offer some of our younger colleagues so I was happy to invest in the development of our younger members.

While I’m not that familiar with many other structured programs, I can only assume that having walked a similar path to our newest generation, the Flight Centre Mentoring Program has relevant info and insight to guide mentees on their way that other programs may not have.

For many, their mentoring journey starts long before they have started mentoring or had a formal mentor themselves. Often, these relationships continue for a long time – but finding this person or people can feel like a once in a lifetime opportunity.

Becky shares with us, the people that have supported her to this point in her caree – two standouts being, Shove and Sal. 

While I’ve never had a set mentor in my career, I do have several people that I can absolutely say have had a profound influence, both personally and professionally.

Shove would have to be one of the most influential people in my career.

His support, trust and encouragement were unlike anything I had ever received in any of my employment. He gave me a chance when others hadn’t and his no-nonsense approach to business was what pushed me from complacent manager to a keen businesswoman – that business should be conducted with professionalism and integrity, and that a positive result is an expectation, not a hope.

He allowed me the autonomy to make mistakes and learn from them and to find the best way to take my business forward. I’ll always be grateful that our paths crossed – he was a one of kind!

Another person who I learnt a great deal from in such a short time, was Sal Sylvester.

I only worked with Sal for a year and it was a tumultuous year but knowing someone 100% has your back for right or wrong, could only bring out my best. So little time, so much learnt and so much respect.

On a day-to-day level, I rely on a few key colleagues from interstate – they allow me to vent and profane and toss around ideas.. and then flip it back on me to make me challenge my own thoughts and beliefs. Some are managers, some are advisors and some are from support… they are bloody awesome people – truly a purple family.

Finally, I also follow several people from lovely suppliers and I enjoy the different skew they offer on everyday discussions.

With International Women’s Day this week, we asked Becky what her thoughts were on the importance of mentoring women in her industry and how it impacts all.

I believe that everyone is entitled to a mentor if they so wish. Everyone, regardless of gender, has different needs and requirements to develop into their best selves. It’s up to us to find the right fit for the right person to get the best out of them.

It allows the mentees a safe option to discuss issues and source new ideas and it allows mentors to have a positive influence on the next generation. Our industry is a dynamic one and can often keep us on our toes – it’s nice to have the support of others to know you’re not alone when life feels like it might be snowballing.

Becky firmly believes ‘we will all only get back what we put in’.

She recognises profit is important but no more important than running a business with integrity, honesty and respectful relationships, both inside and outside of our business – and we feel this is precisely where mentoring intersects, especially with millennials.

She went on to tell us her hopes for her mentees, and how she has seen them change over the course of the program.

I would like to see them develop into well-rounded business people who can work well as part of a team and equally as well, by their own steam. I would love for them to be respected and successful, in whichever way they define success. I can see them evolving each time we chat on email – gaining confidence, working through roadblocks and generally starting to excel in their profession. It’s exciting to watch!

We’re in touch on social media for the moment and I look forward to watching their development over the years and of course, I’m always available for a chat/advice or anything the may need! I know we’ll plan on staying in touch after the program.

I feel like a netball player – always saying, ‘if you need’!

Becky thought about her style of mentoring and shared that she feels she is a fairly relaxed one.

I’m more likely to ask questions about a broad range of topics – both professional and personal. I’m always available to chat (24/7), but I can see that with a good team around them, my mentees are so very capable and have the support they need to succeed!

Read more #MentorHer stories 

International Women’s Day

With International Women’s Day fast approaching, now is the perfect time to think about how you could deploy a bespoke mentor program to better support your people. Get in touch with heidi@mentorloop.com if you’re interested in hearing more about our special IWD package.

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Em is our Marketing Manager at Mentorloop. That's a lot of 'm's! | She is passionate about crafting messages, crafternoons and craft beer.

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