What is entrepreneur mentoring?
Entrepreneur mentoring is a program through which experienced volunteer mentors provide support and guidance to mentees, based on a relationship of mutual trust and respect.
Through this program, mentees can gain knowledge and insight from someone who understands the ins and outs of entrepreneurship and learn from their experience.
The business of being an entrepreneur
- Mentorship is about focusing on the human being at the head of a business. Mentored entrepreneurs can concentrate on acquiring the soft skills they need to excel.
- The mentor-mentee relationship is strictly confidential and free of any judgment or conflicts of interest – the ideal conditions to grow and thrive. The Réseau Mentorat framework is underpinned by a code of ethics, a confidentiality agreement, a set of operating rules and learning tools designed to facilitate the entrepreneur mentoring process every step of the way.
Impacts and benefits of mentoring
Through Réseau Mentorat, mentored entrepreneurs can tap into the insight and experience of a seasoned business professional to get a better handle on the situations they are faced with and sharpen their entrepreneurial acumen.
Mentors share what they have learned over time and provide food for thought to guide mentees in the decision-making process and make informed choices. With each successive interaction, mentors cement their role as a respected confidant, thus empowering their mentees to withstand the challenges before them.
What mentors do:
- Help mentees escape the isolation common to many entrepreneurs
- Listen and ask questions
- Prompt mentees to see problems from a different angle
- Identify possible solutions
- Are a source of encouragement and motivation
- Provide a critical perspective
- Give feedback on mentees’ overall outlooks and attitudes
- Supply real-world examples drawn from their own experience
- Adhere to a strict code of confidentiality.
What mentors don’t do:
- Assist mentees in managing their business
- Serve as a consultant or expert advisor
- Tell mentees what to do (be it through a business action plan or a set mentoring “curriculum”)
- Establish a business relationship with mentees
- Refer mentees within their own networks
- Invest in a mentee’s business
- Receive compensation for their services.
Our mentors are accomplished entrepreneurs who have “been there”
- They are active, semi-active or retired entrepreneurs with a wealth of experience to offer.
- They voluntarily mentor other entrepreneurs on a regular basis for up to two years, in most cases.
- They come from a variety of sectors and work with business owners at any stage (startup, development, growth/export, takeover/transfer of ownership).
- Réseau Mentorat also has mentors who specialize in social and cooperative entrepreneurship who have been specifically trained to work with entrepreneurs in this sector.
- Our mentors have access to powerful tools to hone their own skills so they can provide the best possible level of support, including an accreditation program, training, joint development with their peers and access to best practices from hundreds of mentors in the Réseau Mentorat network.