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A bright future of bringing trades people and homeowners together to get jobs done is ahead of a rapidly emerging New Plymouth start-up company, and the Business Mentor Scheme is right behind it. 

The brainchild of New Plymouth woman Tonya Callebaut, Logajob is an online tool where homeowners list their renovation and trades projects, and local tradesmen are notified and can provide a quote to do the work. 

Since launching in October 2011, after more than three years in development, the site has seen rapid growth in Taranaki and is now being taken nationwide. 

“I’d got to a stage in the development of Logajob where I needed someone other than my husband to bounce ideas off,” says Tonya.
“While he was great, I was looking for advice that would help me make more educated business decisions, and would help me get to a position where I could launch.” 

About this time, Tonya heard a radio advertisement for the Business Mentors Scheme.
“They say that advertising talks to you when you need it most, and this sounded like a great next step, so I made the call to Venture Taranaki, and was matched with a business mentor.”

Tonya teamed up with first-time mentor Craig Oliver, whose background in finance, banking, home sales and more recent entrepreneurial forays into sales and project management were a perfect match for Logajob.

 “I’ve always enjoyed training and helping people, and mentoring seemed like a really good way to do both and give something back,” says Craig.

“Hanging out with positive and passionate people and being able to help them grow their business is a great feeling, with nice side effects of building your own networks and stroking your ego as you realise how much you know that you otherwise take for granted!”

The two usually meet over a coffee, with the occasional white-board session thrown in to work through some of the bigger goals for the business. 

“Thinking back, I really needed someone to talk to about my idea, hold me accountable and encourage me to move beyond the plateaus I reached. Craig’s industry and financial knowledge, as well as his business connections, were a great sounding board to get me moving,” says Tonya.

Though helping Tonya to take Logajob to market was his first mentoring assignment, Craig has now taken on mentoring roles with two further Taranaki businesses.  

“My advice for anyone who has considered being a mentor is to just do it and see if you like it. You certainly won’t lose anything by the experience, other than a little bit of time,” says Craig.

“You do have to be open to different ways of doing things, but that’s also an opportunity for you to learn. It’s not about being strict – as a mentor you’re there to guide them to make their business better.”

“It’s been really good to see Logajob launch successfully and grow so strongly – and really rewarding to have been part of that process.”
The fruit of their collective wisdom and energy is now live and rapidly growing at

For more information on becoming a mentor or getting a mentor contact Kayleen at Venture Taranaki today on 06 7595163 or kayleen@venture.org.nz

  Mentor case study: Logajob  

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