Mentoring Monthly for everyone supporting, signed up for, and interested in Get Mentoring.
Mentoring Monthly
Welcome to January's Mentoring Monthly and a new direction for the Get Mentoring initiative. Now that the funded workshops for volunteer business mentors have come to an end we’re spreading the word about the benefits of mentoring within the micro, small and medium-sized enterprise community – and letting mentors know how, when and where they can start mentoring relationships.
The big news this month is that the Get Mentoring initiative succeeded in reaching its target to recruit and train 15,000 volunteer business mentors across the UK. We're delighted to report that this is the largest recruitment of volunteer mentors to support the micro, small and medium sized enterprise community, which will help to grow businesses and create jobs. Read the full story in this issue.  

Not wanting rest on our laurels, we've hit the ground running with seven Meet A Mentor events in the diary to help business owners and volunteer mentors make connections. The IOEE is also on the verge of a relaunch with a new look and feel on the cards to make it easier for mentors and businesses to connect online. 
It's not been a slow start to the year for our case studies either. Read about Chibuike Maduforo, an ambitious and inspiring entrepreneur looking to get his online social platform for the disabled community off the ground with the help of mentor David Thornton. Find out how mentor–mentee pairing Lorraine Hart and Susan Richardson have taken Susan’s company Innersight to new heights. And discover why retired IT professional Bob Browning, experienced entrepreneur Carole Watson and serial mentor Elspeth Thorburn are all committed to working with the next generation of entrepreneurs.

Also in this issue, SFEDI Solutions, the research arm of the SFEDI Group, has carried out some interesting research into the processes and practices at the heart of mentoring. Read about the initial findings below.
Bob Browning
Retired IT professional Bob Browning met his first mentee after being contacted through the IOEE. We spoke to Bob about his first impressions of putting his mentoring skills into practice. Read on here
Chibuike Maduforo
Inspirational entrepreneur Chibuike Maduforo is working with his mentor David Thornton to get an ambitious online platform for the disability community up and running. Find out how Chibuike plans to benefit millions of users as well as product and service providers in the disability sphere through his business E-Dis. And why David’s support has been vitally important since they first met at the MADE festival 'Meet A Mentor' lunch last September. more
Elspeth Thorburn
Elspeth Thorburn has worked with a number of mentees since completing the Get Mentoring scheme, from phone conversations with IOEE members to those introduced through friends and acquaintances. Read her thoughts on the importance of empowering small businesses and the encouraging results she’s seen already here.
Lorraine Hart
Excitement, satisfaction, fulfilment and the privilege of seeing someone else grow into a role and succeed.” These are the rewards of volunteer mentoring according to Lorraine Hart a beauty therapy specialist from Surrey. Find out how she’s helped mentee Susan Richardson take her business Innersights in a new direction. more
Carole Watson
Informally mentoring the board of her local tennis club when it faced bankruptcy inspired entrepreneur and newly-qualified volunteer business mentor Carole Watson to help change the fortunes of other businesses. Find out why she can’t wait to share her knowledge and experience here.

The IOEE is changing
Coming soon: a new and improved community area, more ways to make mentor and mentee connections and more communications to members about mentoring opportunities and ways to find a mentor. What is the IOEE? The IOEE came about as SFEDI wanted to create an Institute that would recognise and support entrepreneurial and enterprise skills in the same way that other professions are recognised. Having achieved Institute status in 2012 it is a not for profit organisation to support the enterprise community in the UK. It operates by drawing on resources from The SFEDI Group and the expertise of its communities of mentors, business coaches, enterprise educators and small business owners as well as the wider business population. It's role is to enable connections between its members and provide the opportunities for learning. We are very grateful to everyone getting actively involved and will be inviting more people to contribute and support in the coming months. Link to the IOEE here.
Meet A Mentor
Meet A Mentor Events 
We have organised Meet A Mentor events across the country to give businesses an opportunity to connect with volunteer mentors. Find out how you can get involved here. Not able to make it to one of the Meet A Mentor events? Find out about mentoring organisations in your area at Mentorsme and register on the IOEE to connect with volunteer mentors that have completed the funded training.
Business Mentoring
Yesterday saw the Government's official announcement about the 15,000 volunteer mentors recruited by the Get Mentoring scheme. Within the announcement, Business minister Michael Fallon said, “Small businesses are vital to our economy and we are determined to help them get on and succeed. We have invested in mentoring because we know that good mentors can provide the practical advice and support that an entrepreneur needs to take their business idea to the next level. They have been there and done it and can pass that experience on. I want to encourage people to come forward and take advantage of the mentoring network.” Read the full press notice here. See what 15,000 mentors looks like here.
If you haven't seen it already, take a look at this fantastic video from Penny Power and some of her mentees talking about how mentoring can inspire businesses. Watch it here.
Looking for volunteer mentoring opportunities? Remember that many New Enterprise Allowance Providers are keen to hear from you if you've completed the Get Mentoring training. These organisations provide vital business support to  unemployed people electing to get back into work through self-employment. Mentoring can transform the future prospects for these entrepreneurs and it is also extremely rewarding for mentors wanting to give something back. Find an NEA provider near you here.
Leigh Sear
Research from the world of enterprise mentoring
As part of the Get Mentoring scheme, research has been undertaken into the process and practice of enterprise mentoring. Through consultations with mentors, project partners and other mentoring stakeholders, the research has produced some interesting results. Read the headline points put together by Leigh Sear from SFEDI Solutions here.
Have you started to use a mentor for the first time in the last 18 months? The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) have commissioned an important piece of research to be conducted among SMEs that use mentors. An independent agency, BMG Research, is undertaking the research. BMG would like to interview you to learn more about what prompted you to decide to take a mentor, your experience of finding one and then your experience of using one. Find out more here.
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