Frequently Asked Questions

Mentoring

1How is my mentor selected?
As well as in-depth interviews, Rare Birds’ mentoring platform allows for Mentors and Mentees to be matched through a sophisticated algorithm assessment, including business challenges, skills, industry, personality, and management style and location.
2Who should pay for lunch or coffee if we meet up in person?
If you choose somewhere where there is an expense involved as your meeting place, you will need to set boundaries for who is paying.

We encourage splitting the cost between you and your Mentor – but the boundaries here are a bit hazy and might shift a little according to your specific relationship.

The important thing is to make these agreements in advance so that there are no nasty surprises.
3Should I buy my mentor gifts?
You are not under any obligation whatsoever to buy your Mentor gifts or reimburse them financially for their time.

Of course, if you wanted to buy your Mentor a gift to say thanks at the end of your time together, that would be absolutely fine.

Just exercise your judgment on this one!
4My mentor isn’t an expert in the industry I am working in – can I have a new one?
Our program matches you with a Mentor who has the experience and skills that best suits your business needs, so it doesn’t really matter which industry they have come from.

An outsider’s perspective can also bring fresh and innovative insights.
5Can I keep seeing my Mentor after the 12 months is up?
If you would like to continue a formal mentoring partnership where you meet regularly, you will need to sign up for another program.

At this point, we can also match you with a different Mentor who may be better suited to the needs of your business or career at this stage.
6I am concerned that my Mentor is not able to offer me the kind of help I need – what should I do?
You must remember your Mentor is not there to give you the right answers – it is much more about helping you to come to your own conclusions and to be comfortable with those conclusions.

They provide an experienced sounding board for ideas and also the opportunity to share in another’s wisdom, reflect on learnings and apply what is useful to your own experiences and challenges.

You will be pushed to think critically, creatively and innovatively about business problems, goals and solutions in an encouraging and supportive space.

You will also receive support, motivation and be held accountable to actions, progress and continual development.

Mentors are not problem solvers or ‘fixers’ but rather guides, teachers and tools that enable their Mentees to learn and grow.

Whilst supportive, Mentors are also not merely cheerleaders, they are honest; providing constructive yet sometimes challenging feedback.

The more thoughtful, deliberate and committed you are to the Mentoring relationship the more fruitful it will be.
7Is your program only for women?
The Rare Birds mentoring program was originally launched as a way to provide support to women entrepreneurs, to promote women’s economic empowerment and financial independence.

However, after having a great impact over five years in that area, Rare Birds is now also focusing on mentoring as a diversity and inclusion solution for large corporates.
8I signed up to be a Mentor months ago and I still haven’t heard anything. What’s happening?
Our online platform takes all of the information from the in-depth profiles and we also look at the notes taken during the interviews in order to create the most impactful partnerships possible.

If you haven’t been matched, it simply means that no one requiring a mentor at this point requires help with your particular skills and expertise.

But we have people signing up all the time, so I’m sure you will hear from us soon.
9How does the program operate?
The program requires a commitment from both Mentors and Mentees of 2 hours mentoring per month, for 12 months.

Once you have created a profile on our online platform, we then conduct on onboarding interview to find out more about you and your business.

Once we have a good understanding of your focus areas we then go out to our community of Mentors to find a match for you.
10Who are the mentors?
Our mentors come from a variety of backgrounds - serial entrepreneurs and c-suite executives who volunteer their time to participate in the program.
11What if I don’t like my mentor?
If, after your initial kick of meeting, you do not think you and your mentor are a good match, we allow another re-match.

We will also re-match you if your mentor is unwilling to continue in the mentoring partnership.
12What community and networking events will I have access to ?
We hold a number of learning and networking events throughout the country. We let our community know of these events through our weekly newsletter.
13What is the commitment ?
The commitment is 2 hours per month, for 12 months.
14What do the Mentors get paid ?
Our Mentors contribute on a volunteer basis.
15How does Rare Birds support its Mentees?
Our mentees have access to the learning library on our online platform, access to our community forum and a dedicated account manager throughout the life of their mentoring partnership.
16Does the Mentee pay for the program?
Yes, Rare Birds is a profit for purpose company, with the majority of the cost of the mentoring supporting the running of the program.
17What do I get back from being a Mentor?
Mentoring is a mutually beneficial experience. Becoming a Rare Birds mentor is an opportunity to reflect on and share your knowledge, skills and experience.

It is a chance to perfect your skills at developing others.

Your role is all about guidance and helping your mentee to achieve their goals and realise their potential.

You’ll help them understand problems, identify solutions and implement their plans. While you won’t get paid for being a mentor, there are lots of other benefits that come with the role such as:

• The personal satisfaction of being able to give back;
• The chance to pass on all you have learned about good business to someone who will benefit from your experience;
• To practice your managerial skills and guide your mentee through a key stage in their career;
• A boost to your own career by adding mentorship to your skillset;
• You’ll learn as much from your mentee as they do from you; • A fresh perspective on your own career;
• You’ll feel energised thanks to your mentee’s fresh enthusiasm.
• You’ll be involved in the Rare Birds community of mentors.
18When is my mentoring partnership ending?
Your mentoring partnership will end 12 months after the first session you had with your Mentor/Mentee.

To check this - please look at the date of the mentoring contract you signed with your Mentor/Mentee, and the end date will be 12 months from that date.
19What happens after my mentoring partnership finishes?
Our Community Manager will be in touch to conduct a wrap up interview to get your feedback on the partnership and experience.

In this interview they will discuss your preferences for your next partnership, and understand how Inspiring Rare Birds could help add value to your career.

Being an Ambassador

1What is expected of me?
We have two types of Ambassadors: Brand Ambassadors advocate for Rare Birds, promoting the business’ vision and mission at speaking engagements, in the media, and to the public. They attend our events and encourage their networks to be part of our community. Event Ambassadors do the same, and also actively grow the Rare Birds community in their local area by holding regular business and networking events. The expectation is two events per year.

How to partner with Rare Birds

1What benefits can Rare Birds provide to my community by way of a partnership?
Rare Birds can provide a mentoring program to your community, together with access to our community and learning/networking events.
2Is Jo available to speak at our event? We don’t have a budget, but it will be great exposure.
Jo gives a lot of her time each year to speak at Rare Birds events across the APAC region.

For all external speaking engagements, she requires a speaker’s fee as well as travel costs.
3Do I have to create a profile? What if I don’t want to put my information out there?
You can access everything on the platform by just providing your name and email.

Only Rare Birds can see this information and it is not shared with the community.

Community Platform

1What materials can I access by being in the community?
We have an online learning library of material. We also regularly post content through our blogs and weekly newsletters