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Second year of ARI Mentor Program builds on success of inaugural challenge

Second year of ARI Mentor Program builds on success of inaugural challenge
October 8, 2018

Key stakeholders in NSW’s aquatics industry gathered at the Next Gen Health Club in Ryde, Sydney at the end of September to launch the 2019 Aquatic and Recreation Institute (ARI) Mentor Program.

This is the second year of the Program, which aims to support emerging leaders within the aquatics industry. Teams are required to solve a problem through research, program or solution design that benefits the industry, whie providing opportunities for participants to develop technical, project and leadership skills.

With Jonas Leisure the Principal Partner of the Program, Chief Executive Mike Henton spoke at the launch about the power of data, how it can be captured, and how it’s being used not only in the aquatics industry, but in other businesses, organisations and industries.

ARI Executive Officer Louise Magee said the event went well, with mentors and mentees showing a lot of enthusiasm, commenting “we were trying to get them to come and have lunch, but they were rooted to their seats, making plans and sharing ideas.”

Teams in the Mentor Program bring together promising young people with different levels and types of experience from within a facility, which Magee says “provides participants with the opportunity to work with people they might not ordinarily get to, both from within their facility and senior leaders from the industry. We want to motivate our future leaders and encourage them to stay in the industry – to show them what’s possible. To show them they’re valued and their ideas matter.”

Magee says the overall timeline has been extended by about eight weeks to better accommodate the six to eight weeks over the Christmas holiday period where the demands on participants from their day-to-day work doesn’t leave a lot of time for the challenge.

The teams will develop their concepts over the coming weeks, and then have until the end of May to implement their projects and report back. Three teams will then be chosen to present their project at the ARI Conference and Trade Show, where it will be evaluated by an independent judging panel, and the winner announced at a Presentation Dinner that evening.

Last year’s winning team, from facility management company BlueFit, developed a dashboard called Sales, Analytics and Lead Tracking, or SALT for short, that aquatic centre managers can use to record attendance, incident, water quality and maintenance data in a central location.

Magee says the SALT dashboard has received a lot of interest from industry, adding “if you look what was developed in six months, it’s mind blowing to think what we could achieve with data as an industry.

“The Program not only showcases what’s possible for our future leaders, but also showcases to our industry what’s possible with the use of data.”

It’s that buy-in and support from industry that Magee says is key to the success of the Program.

She concludes “we wouldn’t be able to do this without Jonas Leisure or our mentors. Jonas Leisure has a wealth of knowledge around data, and a demonstrated commitment to developing the industry, so their guidance has been really valuable.

“I know they’re as excited as we are to see what comes out of the challenge in the next eight or nine months.”

Related Articles

11th July 2018 - Jonas Leisure supports new ActiveXchange industry insights

10th July 2018 - Annette Kellerman Aquatic Centre named ARI Aquatic Facility of the Year

27th June 2018 - Time-saving aquatics reporting tool gains industry recognition

4th June 2018 - BlueFit and Lane 4 merge contract management operations

28th May 2018 - Innovative NSW swim centre receives top education award

4th December 2017 - ARI Mentor Program takes off at Sydney Olympic Park

29th September 2017 - Jonas Leisure backs ARI’s new Mentor Program

21st June 2017 - ARI launches facility managers mentoring program

26th May 2017 - Jonas Leisure introduces new customer service portal

15th November 2013 - ARI Active Ageing initiative gets NSW Government backing

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