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Becoming a Mentor
SBMS is currently seeking Mentors in Metropolitan and Regional areas of Tasmania.
SBMS Mentors are people who’ve run successful small and large businesses. They are familiar with up-to-date business practices and keen to support start-up businesses through to established SMEs in developing and making their businesses better. Not everyone has got what it takes to be a good Mentor so if you are interested and believe you have what it takes, read on.
Click here to download an Application Form.
Please note: Your application must be accompanied with a copy of your C.V.
What type of person are we looking for?
Small businesses are all so different, from the new start-up to the well established. They can be husband and wife teams, businesses employing dozens of staff, manufacturers, retailers, importers, service providers, there’s no limit. The common thread is they all need Mentoring help and we are the organisation to help them. We want Mentors who have a passion for sharing their knowledge, making a difference, offering guidance, giving confidence and motivating people. Mentors need a broad business experience with a range of different skills and disciplines that enable them to confidently Mentor across this wide spectrum.
A good Mentor will identify and empathise with people who may be struggling to run their own small business. Having experienced the ups and downs of your own business adds real relevance to the advice you can give. There is certainly a role for people with major corporate backgrounds but there is a need to understand the often minor details and difficulties of the small businessperson.
What makes a good Mentor?
A good Mentor is a good listener. Some senior business people find it frustrating to listen to clients with little knowledge of business disciplines, who need help on basics and who are often unaware of how to go about a straightforward business process. But that is why they are asking for help. The SBMS Mentors role is to listen to the client and then help them to help themselves. SBMS is not a consulting organisation so does not undertake paid project work on behalf of clients. SBMS Mentors listen to clients’ hopes, ideas, problems and worries and try to lead the client to find the right solution and way forward. This requires patience, humility, imagination, optimism and being non-judgemental and constructive. This can be more intellectually challenging and harder work than you’d expect.
How much time is required?
Client meetings usually take a couple of hours. In most cases it’s good to meet at their business premises and clients usually want to do this during office hours. It can easily be half an hour’s drive each way. So it’s important that a Mentor has the time available to provide this support when and where it suits the client. As a guideline, Mentors are expected to take on a minimum of 6 clients a year, usually with 4 sessions each. Sessions can easily take 3-4 hours including travelling and the hour or so writing up the Action Plan afterwards. Spread over a year this equates to a minimum of 2 to 3 hours a week with the usual peaks and troughs of activity. This is a minimum expectation for a genuine commitment and there are numerous Mentors who do many times this.
Outside of Hobart and Launceston, Mentoring activity is less concentrated and demand can vary. There is just as much need for Mentoring to small businesses regionally but there is less awareness of SBMS and its services. SBMS is in a building phase for regional Mentoring so there are good opportunities for Mentors keen to develop SBMS and its expertise beyond the metropolitan areas, both creating the demand and satisfying it.
Training and Procedures
SBMS requires all new Mentors to undergo training and briefing in procedures and Mentoring skills which is usually split across two days to cover the necessary ground. SBMS requires that all Mentors are fluent in the use of websites and email and are well versed in Word and Excel. There is a monthly General Meeting to which all Mentors should attend when possible as there is a speaker program that ensures that all Mentors are up-to-date with current trends.
How to apply to become a Mentor
Clients are encouraged to select a Mentor appropriate to their needs by looking through the C.V.’s of Mentors on this website. Have a look for yourself at the menu Our Mentors. If you are interested in becoming a Mentor, we’d love to hear from you. Fill in the Application Form and email it, along with your C.V., to Ross Jennings - [email protected]
To download a copy of the application form, click on the icon below:
Find out why Mentoring is so effective, how it works, how SBMS can help your business and how much they cost. Our programs implement practical business advice that can boost your business. This is coming soon.