Soar Collective’s focus is on building an engaged and supportive community of businesswomen who by sharing their successes and failures, can learn from and empower each other.
In May 2014, founder Jess Jones (below) 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. She’d had enough of attending events where guests seemed to be competing for a prize for who was the busiest.
Jess realised that there was something lacking in the businesswomen’s networking market and was frustrated at the current offer not quite resonating with her. The first Soar Collective event was held in Mornington, Victoria and has grown to 5 locations in 2017.
Jess grew up in East Gippsland, living most of her school years in a town with a population of 4000. No stranger to regional living, she watched her own parents attempt to run a successful business in a small country town and saw how theirs and many others, fell victim to a lack of resources and support.
Jess believes that mobilising a workforce is the whole community’s responsibility; encouraging partners and family members to recognise that the women in their lives have aspirations to fulfil is key to this objective. Jess believes that a cultural shift is needed to empower women in non-metro, rural and country towns.
“Changing old habits and mindsets can be a slow process but I’m ready to take it on. I want to see regional businesses actively seeking out women in their communities, developing collaborations and projects, challenging the traditional networks that they have relied on for so long.”
Jess is passionate about celebrating and empowering regional businesswomen of calibre and believes there’s a lack of events, funding, support and awareness around businesswomen in non-metropolitan areas of Australia. Jess wants these incredible women to be seen and heard by the business and general community.
After 3.5 years of building Soar Collective, Founder Jess Jones decided it was time for the right person to step in and grow the business to the next level. Someone who understood the big vision and potential, as well as being able to nurture the regional communities of businesswomen forged along the way. Fortunately, Jac Bowie came along.
One of Jess’ big projects is the Rise Documentary – a film about 2 ladies and 2 babies who went on a road trip to learn from women who rise to the challenge of a modern world. More about the documentary and how you can see it here.