Get Mentoring

Posted on by natalieparker

As an experienced professional and a new business owner, Michael Coe is in a unique position to share his thoughts on the importance of enterprise mentoring. Having spent the first 20 years of his career in the retail sector turning underperforming stores and teams into award-winners, Michael then decided to set up his own company, Dimension88, in 2011. And despite his obvious level of expertise and knowledge, Michael decided to enlist the help of a mentor through Menta and the Suffolk Chamber of Commerce. He says,

“I don’t think it matters how qualified or experienced an entrepreneur is, if you set up a new business it can be great to have someone there to question things and offer you different ways of looking at problems. I feel like I’ve really benefitted from having another pair of trained eyes look over my business plan and discuss ideas with me. My mentor empowered me to make my own decisions and set goals, and being able to contact him over the phone or by email reassured me that I wasn’t on my own.”

Michael says that mentoring has always been a part of his various roles within the companies he’s worked for, and it is something he is keen to continue doing now that he has established his own enterprise. Michael wasted no time in putting his half day training on the Introduction to Enterprise Mentoring course to good use:

“I was really excited by the opportunity to take part in the Get Mentoring scheme and become an IOEE mentor. I’ve taken a lot from my experience as a mentee and I wanted to put the skills I learnt to good use as soon as possible. People need to remember that both the mentee and mentor benefit from the relationship so I always feel like I’m learning and getting something out of the experience, whichever side of the table I’m sitting on. As a mentor I’m now working with a business in the veterinary industry based in East Sussex. They were looking to offer more work experience placements and training opportunities through their business when I began working with them 12 months ago. We’ve really worked on their people management skills, trying to get the best out of this aspect of the business.”

Not prepared to stop there, Michael has already been exploring other mentoring opportunities, including a pilot scheme through the CIPD and Job Centre Plus to mentor 16–24 year-olds. He sees it as the responsibility of established business owners to support enterprise wherever possible, especially when the UK economy is in need of a boost:

“Those who have completed the Get Mentoring training are helping to inspire a generation rather than moaning about the recession. It’s very important that we offer others the benefit of our experience and business acumen, which is why I think the scheme is so worthwhile.”

Posted on by natalieparker | Posted in Case Studies, Get Mentoring Monthly