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Mentee and Mentor of the RISE Mentorship Program
Christo Lodder (mentee) and Nico Venter (mentor)

[IIWC] At the speed-meeting event, was there an immediate connection between


[NICO] As I recall definitely, yes. From my point of view it felt as though we may be

very similar in many respects, with similar thinking and personality types. This

has become very clear as we spent time together and so it has been an

absolute pleasure spending time with Christo, because we’ve both been

looking at a few things and learning together! Richard Bach said that “You

teach best what you need to learn”

[CHRISTO] I can definitely say so. I very soon realised we think alike and have like-minded



[IIWC] What is the advice that you want Christo to carry with him throughout his


[NICO] I’d have to suggest that he always keeps building and believing in

himself as a personal brand that represents something to those he interacts

with and people will keep enjoying buying into the brand that is Christo

Lodder. I’d want to add that he keeps using the many strengths that he’s been

blessed with, remaining confident in his abilities yet always humble. Don’t be

afraid to stand out but always value the team that you are a part of.


[IIWC] Has the program met your expectations? What have you learned that you can

apply to your career?

[CHRISTO] It most definitely has. Only choosing one thing is tough, but I would say I have

learned the importance of having a mentor. I believe everyone needs a

mentor. Life is always changing and we will never know everything or have all

the answers. We might as well figure it out together.


[IIWC] I love the winning-selfie! How do you balance work and personal life to make

time for hobbies, loved ones and career?

[NICO] Thanks, we really had a blast hiking in the

winter cold! I guess balancing work

and personal life starts with the awareness

that one needs to have around a

healthy balance and the things that you

allow to take up the hours, weeks,

months and years of your life. With that, to

me, that also comes priorities. As

one figure out what is really important in the

long term, you get to situations

where you make choices and hopefully at the end of your week, month, financial year, career or life, you can look back and be able to say “With the information at my disposal, I made the decision that was best for me & my family, even if now, it may feel or appear to not be the case, I did my honest best” For me a big part of balancing things often comes down to action - I

guess it relates to what some call the 5 second rule: when you know you need to now do X, get up and do it now: like going for that run or making that important call etc. This approach has often been very valuable to me.

[CHRISTO] Work-life balance has actually been one of the many topics we have been

discussing, and it will always be tough. I believe ensuring you have hobbies

that truly encapsulate you and allows you to switch off is important. If it

becomes difficult to make time for it, schedule it in your diary!


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