FAQ - Community Mentors

What is mentoring?

Mentoring is most often defined as a professional relationship in which an experienced person (the mentor) supports and encourages people to develop specific skills and knowledge that will maximise their community organisation's potential, develop their skills, and improve their performance.  In short, it is the transfer of knowledge, skills and experience.  The mentor acts as a guide for not for profit organisations, social enterprise groups, registered charities, charitable trusts and un-registered charities, NGO, to find the right direction and develop solutions.

Who will my mentor be?

Your mentor will be an experienced community mentor located within a reasonable travelling distance to your organisation.  Your mentor will be matched to your individual organisation's circumstances and requirements by a Community Mentors agency.

Who are the agencies and what role do they perform?

Community Mentors has a network of 18 agencies across New Zealand. Our agencies encompass the best economic development agencies, chambers of commerce and employment associations in New Zealand. After you register the nearest community mentors agent will contact you within five working days to discuss your application in detail.  This is an important contact to make sure the agent is able to match you with a mentor with the experience and skills you need. Your agent will contact you 30 days after the match, and again at 75 days to follow-up and ensure the match is working well.  You can also contact your agent at any time for assistance.

Business Mentors New Zealand proudly supports Community Mentors

Is there a cost to register?

Yes clients of the Community Mentoring Programme pay a $225 + gst registration fee.  After registration the mentoring is free for up 12 months, volunteered by your experienced Community Mentor.The registration fee helps to cover the administration costs of the programme.

When will I meet my mentor?

After the agent has matched you with a mentor the agent will let you know and your mentor will contact you within ten working days to arrange to meet.  Meeting times and locations will be organised to suit both you and your mentor.

How often will I meet with my mentor?

During your first or second meeting you and your mentor will usually set and agree goals or objectives that you want to accomplish.  Meeting frequencies and formats will be agreed between you so that your action steps can be supported and you have access to your sounding board when you need it.

How long do I have my mentor for?

Your registration with Community Mentors entitles you to free mentoring for up to one year.  The term of your relationship with a mentor depends on the goals and objectives that you agree on.  You can use one or more different mentors during the one year to assist you to meet different organisational challenges at different times.  You can also re-register for the service after the one year period is up.

What will the mentor do?

Your mentoring will be tailored to suit your individual needs so it's hard to be specific.  In general terms, your mentor will firstly work with you to conduct a confidential organisation assessment and define your mentoring requirements and objectives.  Using this assessment your mentor will develop an agreed action plan with you and then work with you to implement the plan.

How can I expect my mentor to work alongside me?

Depending on your challenges and circumstances you can expect your mentor to do some or all of the following:
  • Facilitate growth by sharing resources and networks
  • Challenge you to move beyond your comfort zone
  • Create a safe learning environment for taking risks
  • Assist with the implementation of any training that you do into your community organisation
  • Share knowledge and life experiences
  • Provide guidance and advice
  • Listen
  • Inspire and offer encouragement
  • Be genuinely interested in questions and concerns
  • Be open and honest
  • Discuss goal setting
  • Support the implementation of knowledge and skill  

What are the benefits of mentoring?

Community mentoring offers many benefits.  By participating in a mentoring relationship you will be able to realise the following:
  • Enhanced strategic community initiatives
  • Improved productivity
  • Elevating knowledge transfer from just getting information to the retaining of practical experience and wisdom
  • Critical feedback in key areas, such as communications, interpersonal relationships, technical abilities, change management and leadership skills
  • Having a sharper focus on what is needed to grow professionally
  • Acquiring specific skills and knowledge that are relevant to personal goals
  • Access to a friendly ear with which to share frustrations as well as successes
  • Better understanding of your overheads and cost structures.

Who do you help?

We mentor social enterprise groups, community groups, ethnic groups, registered charities, communities with special economic development needs, community based sporting groups and organisations, that promote health for the benefit of the general public and not for profits organisations that exist for charitable purposes.

In order to sign up for a Community Mentor, please follow this link Community Mentor sign up