There are many definitions but put simply it is a supportive professional relationship between two people; the mentor and the client. Mentoring is a powerful collaborative relationship that provides the person being mentored with `quality thinking time`. With the mentor asking the right questions the client is able to clarify issues that s/he wants to work on. As the process continues, clarity develops into decisions and then into actions. It involves effective goal setting and action planning; above all it is about results!
The mentor has experience of working with people in similar situations to you. They have worked in business themselves for many years and are committed to helping you to be the best that you can. Our mentors are volunteers who care about small business and want to ‘put something back’ into our business community.
The mentor’s expectations of the client:
In return the mentor will:
Mentoring is a very powerful tool for learning. Your mentor won’t give you all the answers but will use their knowledge and experience to help you work out solutions to problems and ways to make progress with your business. The mentor will expect you to identify and agree to actions – and will also expect you to implement actions and be prepared to discuss your business honestly with them. Mentoring is usually very motivational and inspiring!
In theory anyone who is starting or growing their business. In practice we only have a limited number of mentors who can give their time voluntarily, so we allocate mentors carefully and aim to match people with mentors who have the right skills and experience to help them.
They are experienced local business people who can give a small amount of their time to help new businesses get off the ground. They have a range of skills and experience behind them and some of them will have specialised knowledge in areas such as finance, marketing, exporting, engineering etc.
In the first instance email Andrew Maliphant with mentoring in the subject line and a brief description of your business idea and the possible areas where you might need help.