The Mentoring Programme

GUIDELINES FOR MENTORS

The FGC Mentoring Scheme aims to assist younger executives build their careers in FMCG.  As a trainee it’s a chance to learn from our more experienced members. For our wiser heads, it’s a chance to put something back into the industry by supporting the next generation of FMCG senior executives. Once your application has been received it will be considered by FGC's Membership Services Working Group at their next meeting and a suitable mentor will be selected for you. Selections will be made using criteria contained in your application and we will endeavour to find as good a match for you as we can. 

Why be a mentor?

1. Have a good rationale for being (or not being) a mentor.

Think carefully about why you’re saying yes to the opportunity of mentoring someone. Good reasons to say yes: you genuinely enjoy helping someone develop, you like to share what you’ve learned in life; you have a wish to leave a legacy which makes a positive difference.

2. Recognise all you have to offer.

Many prospective mentors don’t believe they have much to contribute to potential trainees. Accept the fact that you have a wealth of experiences, skills, knowledge, lessons learned, and the ability to consider a trainee's thoughts, goals, experiences, dilemmas, and questions as an objective “outsider” in their lives. You don’t have to be an expert, their teacher, or a person with answers. Your trainee is looking for a listener, sounding board, encourager, and someone genuinely interested in helping them think through their options and make decisions.

(Complete the Mentor Application/ Skills Identification Form in the online application to help with mapping the most appropriate trainee, based on your strengths - link below).

3. If you go ahead you will be agreeing to:

  • A 12-month commitment.
  • Regular meetings (average of 2 hours per month).
  • Providing sound advice on the trainee’s development activities.
  • Keeping confidences between you and your trainee, and not using your position to try and ‘poach’ him or her.
  • Being honest, yet caring and diplomatic in the feedback you provide.

To apply to be a Mentor, click here:
MENTOR Application and Skills Identification Form 


GUIDELINES FOR TRAINEES

1. Recognise that mentoring is just one key development tool.

Mentors are truly valuable helpers. They can save you time and inspire, teach, and encourage you. They can be excellent role models for what you want to do and become. At the same time, you can learn from many other sources. Consider a mentor as part of your overall personal development strategy.

2. Think “what” before “who.”

It’s always tempting to think of someone you’d like as your mentor, especially if you’ve met someone you think would be extremely helpful. However, before you identify whom, think about what you want to learn and develop in yourself. Only when you have a pretty strong idea of what skills, knowledge, or attitudes/perspectives you want to gain or grow are you ready to accept an invitation to help you do this.

(Complete the online Trainee Application/Skills Identification Form - link below)

3. Expect to lead or at least manage the relationship.

No longer can you expect mentors to initiate and manage the relationship, direct you in what to do, and think of creative learning experiences for you. The trend now is for trainees (you) to guide and direct the process. Usually your mentors will expect and welcome this role reversal. Discuss roles early in your relationships. Ask directly if your mentors mind if you take the lead, assume responsibility for setting up meetings, and otherwise keep everything on track. Even as the manager, be sensitive to good mentoring protocol, which calls for you to honor your mentors’ needs and schedules as much as possible.

Common Activities that mentors and trainees do together:

  • Talking together (eg. about the trainee's past experiences, idea exchange, goals, plans and skills, the mentor’s career path, challenges both face, useful problem solving strategies).
  • Attending meetings, conferences and other events together (and discussing these later).
  • Exchanging and discussing written materials (such as document written by mentee or an article valued by the mentor).
  • Interacting with other people (including people who could be of help to the trainee and other trainee-mentor pairs).

4. If you go ahead you will be agreeing to:

  • A 12-month commitment.
    Do the necessary work and preparation (guided by your mentor).
  • Regular meetings (average of 2 hours per month).
  • Keeping confidences and commitments between you.
  • Being open in accepting advice and constructive criticism.

To apply to be a trainee, click here:
TRAINEE Application and Skills Identification Form