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CEO of Pax Republic taps into PwC mentor insights

Barbara Sharp, CEO and Co-Founder of Pax Republic (left)

Imagine helping employees voice their true perceptions of their workplace, to empower senior leaders to drive better workplace culture.

This is what Pax Republic does, explains CEO and Co-Founder, Barbara Sharp.

“We’ve got an AI-powered, anonymous conversation and analytics platform, that’s uniquely able to give employees a place to talk in a safe and facilitated conversation,” says Barbara. 

“This elevates the voice of the people to the C-Suite and board so they can make changes for better resource use and implementation of strategy.”

Mentorship with an eye on scale

By helping companies address this challenge, Pax Republic has experienced considerable growth, shifting from startup to scaleup. It’s a transition that led Barbara to seek wider expertise to keep the company on its growth path. 

“As a founder, you need to know about marketing, developing your own culture, recruitment, sales, investments, and networks - all while running a business,” says Barbara. It’s for this reason that she sought mentorship through Stone & Chalk’s MentorMatch program

Walking in customers’ shoes

Through a bespoke matchmaking process, Stone & Chalk paired Barbara with PwC Global Business Development Leader, Mark Veyret. They’ve been working together for a year now. In fact, the relationship has proved so fruitful that Mark has since become an advisory board member at Pax Republic.

“Mark knows how to help you get into the customers’ experiences and to help you walk in their shoes,” says Sharp.

He worked with Barbara and her team specifically on growth strategy, provided advice for major sales opportunities, shaped stakeholder messaging, and opened up his network to aid with the company’s channel partnerships.

Barbara explains this in more detail: “We have a channel strategy, where we need partners. There are people in the corporate ecosystem — such as the big four professional firms and technology integrators such as Microsoft — who are close to our target customers and who can co-sell with us to those clients. Having access to people who can help us navigate those relationships has been really valuable.”

When passion and strategy combine

For Mark, becoming a Stone & Chalk CEO mentor was an opportunity to help Australian founders like Barbara realise their social and business purpose. He said he was impressed by the passion and credentials of the Pax Republic team and its ability to fill a real business need. Stone & Chalk also ensured the mentoring relationship was a good fit. 

“We received great briefing packs and took part in well-designed ‘speed dating’ sessions with mentors and founders. We were also given practical checklists to structure the mentoring relationship, which created the right mentoring relationship objectives,” says Mark.

Stone & Chalk’s wider mentoring community also played a key role, by helping to generate ideas and source deep specialist advice where needed.

Mark highlights that “it’s been rewarding to see Pax Republic’s individual successes turn into a faster upward growth momentum. They’re empowering customers’ employees and leaders to make better business decisions.”

3 tips for CEO mentors and mentees

1. Step forward and engage in Stone & Chalk’s change-making community

2. Grab a coffee with a mentor or founder and get a feel for what it's all about

3. Get prepared for a new type of professional, learning and personal experience.

If you'd like to participate in Stone & Chalk’s MentorMatch program as a founder or mentor, or to learn more, please get in touch with General Manager of Stone & Chalk Melbourne, Annie Le Cavalier, via

December 2019

Filed under: mentors, startup


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