A Solutionist’s Journey

Emily Melgar

Emily Melgar has been a part of the vocational education and training sector for over two decades. She is the Managing Director of Enable College, an RTO specialising in vocational education and training.

Emily calls herself a “solutionist,” a fantastic word she coined to describe her approach to problem-solving. She looks at problems and analyses why things aren’t working and what has been tried before. She then gets creative and starts thinking of ways to find the right solutions.

A natural networker, Emily remembers the first time she learned about BNI. It was duing a conversation with Marty Edwards from Multiple Solutions at In Studio + Café. Whilst walking to work one day, she saw Marty having coffee from the corner of her eye and decided to pop in and say hello. They hadn’t known each other for long, but during their conversation, he suggested that she come to a meeting.

“We talked on this particular day, and Marty said, “Why don’t you come along?” And because I’m always looking for new opportunities, I said, “Okay, I’m a bit of a natural networker; I like going out and meeting new people. So, it was a bit of a no-brainer to go.”

After visiting BNI Advantage, Emily knew she needed to be a part of BNI. It wasn’t just about networking but the energy in the room and being surrounded by other businesspeople. The camaraderie and support among the 70+ members were strong, and the “Givers Gain” concept resonated with her.

She’s always been a natural referrer and gets satisfaction from helping others solve problems, even if it doesn’t directly benefit her. Knowing she had the group’s support was a big drawcard.

“I’ve been referring long before BNI. I refer a lot within the room, but on a day-to-day basis, I also refer a lot outside of the room. It’s just something I’ve always done.”

It took some financial manoeuvring, but Emily made it happen because she knew she needed it. BNI has been a fantastic experience for her, and she continues to enjoy meeting new people and supporting others in their business endeavours.

A love affair with BNI

Emily appreciates the value of BNI and the Givers Gain philosophy. She finds comfort in the structure, goals, KPIs, and measurable aspects of the group as she measures her own success similarly. With 60-70 individuals in the room, Emily sees the potential for everyone to refer business to one another, creating a win-win situation. She views it as having 70+ BDMs in the room, where doors can be opened without her knowing.
Emily actively listens for cues and options to support her fellow members. One-to-one meetings have proven particularly valuable. Educating others about what she does takes time, and she loves getting to know her fellow members.
Power teams in BNI are another aspect that Emily finds appealing. She quickly identified her ideal referral partners (a power team around NDIS) and established a core group with whom she shares a common interest.
“In my power group, we’re essentially looking at creating an NDIS provider business support package. Within our power team, we can offer all HR, accounting, compliance, and training & support needs.”
This initiative has only been in place for a few months, but the NDIS team already sees some exciting opportunities.

Making the BNI Australia Top-20 member list

Emily has been on the regional top 10 list now for a few months and has even been at number one for a couple of months consecutively.
“I remember the first time I looked at that, and I thought, “Oh, wouldn’t it be cool to be on that?” And I started looking at the bottom of the list and going up and thinking, “Oh, I’m not there.” And then, “Oh, my God, I am there. I’m at number one!”
BNI referrals come naturally to her when she hears hints of problems or concerns from others. She has become skilled at asking simple questions like Oh, tell me a little bit more about that” or Whats the issue there?” to encourage them to open up about their situation.
Emily is always trying to ensure that she does her part to help her chapter become the largest and most profitable in Australia. Her ongoing contributions to building the chapter havent gone unnoticed, with her inclusion in BNI Australias Top 20 members for February (#20) and April (#17).
“To see my name on the BNI Australia Top 20, I was pretty chuffed when I first saw that. Then, it happened again, so I’m still on a bit of a high…”

A local record

For Emily, networking comes naturally. Although she is conscious of the key metrics and targets she needs to meet to contribute to her chapters success, she doesn’t seem to have too many problems. One of the metrics is visitors, and she blew it out of the water when recently, a visitor challenge by her chapter saw her bring 28 visitors to her presentation and we reckon it’s a local record that will stand for a long time.

Best networking tip from one of BNI Australia’s best?

Emilys best networking tip is to build a relationship with the person she wants to network with.
“It’s not all about talking business; you need to develop a relationship with them. That way, when you meet them again, you can easily say hello and continue your conversation.”
She also suggests being an active listener by asking questions and paying attention to peoples cues. Research is essential for successful networking, according to Emily. She advises giving someone your full attention and politely ending conversations that arent worth having.
“Don’t look over someone’s shoulder when talking to them. Give them your full attention. And if the conversation isn’t worthwhile, politely thank them and move on.”
Emilys BNI journey has been a transformative experience that has helped her grow personally and professionally. And were excited to see where her journey will take her next as she continues to build strong relationships and achieve her goals.