Mentoring, coaching and one-off coffee meetings

We could all do with a chat about our work life sometimes. Our jobs are important to us and being able to discuss issues we’re having with someone external can be hugely beneficial.

Whether it’s about a particular comms topic we’re finding challenging or perhaps a more personal issue such as our confidence in the work-place, being able to vocalise this to an experienced, sympathetic ear gives us a new and fresh perspective to help us progress. Our peer support scheme is a personal matching service run exclusively for our organisational members.

How the scheme works

We like to get a good understanding of what you want from the scheme before deciding who could be a good match for you and in what capacity. We ask you to approach the scheme with one clear objective in mind, which we will ask you to explain in our application process. Once we’ve received your application, we have a couple of different options we’re likely to steer you towards. We will do our best to help with all requests, but bear in mind there may be applications we’re not able to help with.

Mentor

In a mentoring relationship, you learn from the experience of your mentor. This will often be someone further ahead on your chosen career path. A mentor is a sounding board, someone you can talk to in confidence who will often have some similar experiences to share.

How does the mentoring service work?

Coaching

Coaching is more fundamentally about you as a person. You will be able to explore how you think, feel and act in situations. A coach is a trained professional who will not necessarily have career experience similar to you, but someone that will listen, reflect and ask questions to help support and guide you.

How does the coaching service work?

One-off meeting

Sometimes a one-off chat over a coffee is all you need to get you on your way. It can be a good opportunity to get a quick fix of inspiration and have some questions answered about a particular job role or comms division. Or perhaps you’d like to know how a particular charity carries out their work.

How does the one-off meeting service work?

Choose a mentor if:

  • You need help with a specific comms challenge. Eg how to deal with a re-brand / writing a comms strategy / getting to grips with social media/ advice on PR work etc
  • You’ve just moved into a new, perhaps more senior role and you’d like someone neutral to talk to while you find your feet who has experienced a similar transition

Choose a coach if:

  • You or your organisation are undergoing a significant shift and you will be developing personally in response to new challenges and opportunities
  • You need help with some strategies for dealing with tricky work relationships or challenging organisational issues

Choose a one-off meeting if:

  • You’re interested in finding out more about a specific comms role. Perhaps you want to move from PR to campaigning, for example, and you’d like to talk to someone in this role to ask some questions
  • You’d like to brainstorm about one particular aspect of a comms project

Our highly popular Peer Support Scheme for organisational members is enjoying a surge in mentee applications. We will continue to deliver tailored, high quality matches between mentors and mentees, to help our mentees achieve their work and career goals.

However, due to the increasing popularity of the scheme, it may take longer than usual to find a suitable match. But please keep your applications coming and we will continue to focus on finding the best matches for all of our CharityComms mentees. If you have any questions about the scheme or your application, please contact Sarah, our mentoring manager, who will be happy to help.

Considering becoming a mentor?

If you would like to help our mentees by becoming a mentor and sharing your communications experience, we’d love to hear from you.

I signed up to the mentoring scheme after taking on a more senior role at my charity. I was matched with a fantastic mentor who provides a sympathetic ear, lots of insight and plenty of encouragement. Talking through a range of issues and identifying potential solutions has given me an entirely new perspective.

Lizzie Webster
media manager,
Stroke Association

Coaching provided a space for me to build my capacity to establish myself as a senior leader. It was incredibly helpful to work through my challenges with a professional coach who listened, reflected back and gently guided me.

Antonia Bance
head of campaigns and communications,
TUC

I got loads of great ideas out of my one-off meeting, which lasted about an hour.  I wanted to brainstorm with someone about the challenges I was facing putting together a programme of messaging training. It was so reassuring to talk to a more experienced professional outside my own charity who could provide some real perspective.

Anna Pietrowski
communications and copy manager,
Breast Cancer Now

Who can apply for the scheme

All CharityComms organisational members are welcome to apply for our peer support scheme. The most important factor is that you have one clear objective to explore before applying for the scheme. Please be aware that we can’t help with multiple issues.

How do I apply?

To apply for our peer support scheme, you’ll need to fill in an online application form. Please preview the questions here before going to the online application and be sure you have just one clear objective on what is bringing you to the peer support scheme before applying.