Connecting Founders partners with the Cherie Blair Foundation for Women to provide women entrepreneurs from emerging countries the opportunity to engage in a year-long mentorship relationship with experienced mentors from all over. Applications open in September each year and mentoring starts in November. Each year, we have a limited number of spots for mentees and mentors from Thailand and the Philippines. The criteria to join the program are listed below. If interested to join next year or want to find out more, please contact us.
Mentee selection criteria
As you nominate women as mentees, please keep in mind that all nominees must meet the following criteria. We encourage you to only nominate women you know and believe could benefit from a cross-border mentoring relationship. Nominees should be:
- Able to access the internet at least twice each week and keep in regular contact with their mentors over email
- Able to hold online meetings using Skype and Google Hangouts at least twice every month for one year (from November 2017 to November 2018)
- Running their own enterprise or about to launch one in the next three months
- Able to speak English at the intermediate level and engage in a mentoring relationship in English on their own (without a translator)
- Able to engage in a 1:1 mentoring relationship
- From and living in a developing or emerging economy
- Able to commit for a full year, starting in November
- Willing to fill in four online feedback forms and provide updates to our team
- Keen to engage in a mentoring relationship that offers support and a space for reflection/growth (but does not offer consulting or advisory services)
- Nominated by a member of your team who is confident they are committed to this opportunity and able to make the most out of their mentoring relationship
Support and questions
We will be on hand throughout the nomination period to provide updates and answer any questions you or your nominees have.
We will be in touch with an update on your applicants on 15 August. If you have any questions before then, do let me know and I’d be happy to assist.
Our approach to mentoring
We’re looking for women entrepreneurs with passion, drive and commitment to join as mentees. Mentoring can offer a great source of support and a wealth of rewards, but it is important that nominees understand what mentoring does and does not provide when they are considering whether this is the right opportunity for them.
What a mentor is: The role of a mentor is to act as a thought partner and a sounding board for the mentee. They provide encouragement, help the mentee to reflect and brainstorm solutions, ask probing questions to help the mentee think further, help the mentee to set and work toward her goals, help to build the mentee’s confidence and provide a source of support.
What a mentor is NOT: The mentor is not a business advisor, consultant or coach. The mentor’s role is not to provide the answers, but rather to help create a reflective space so the mentee can think further and work through possible solutions. The mentor will not necessarily be from the same sector and will not be from the same country, but will have experience in the areas that she wants to focus on in the mentoring relationship. The mentor will not advise the mentee, do work for her or make decisions for her, but will be there to support her as she makes her own decisions and works toward her business goals.
The women entrepreneurs we work with are all very accomplished and bring experience to the table. We see mentoring as valuable at all stages of the entrepreneurial journey. Indeed, some of the most accomplished professionals and entrepreneurs count mentoring as the key to their continued success!
More about the programme
You can also check out our recent programme evaluation, which highlights the value of mentoring for both mentees and mentors.