The CIPR hopes the annual programme of one-to-one personal engagement will develop and coach PR practitioners to achieve more from their careers.
Each mentor will go through training on the mentoring process, which will include guidelines on levels of engagement, expected commitment and what mentees should get from the scheme. The role of mentors may vary from the need to act as a role model, a sounding board, a guide and a skills developer to an advocate and a champion.
It is hoped the scheme will help advance the practice, professionalism, educational standards and status of public relations within the UK.
The scheme is intended to benefit PR practitioners who have a minimum of two years’ experience. It will formalise and build on the informal mentoring started by some of the Institute’s regional and sectoral groups.
Jay O’Connor, a CIPR Fellow, chartered PR practitioner and past president (2010) who has just signed up as a mentor, said: ‘The CIPR’s mentoring scheme is an exciting new development that will encourage and empower PR practitioners to achieve their potential. The scheme will help to grow talent by understanding the needs of an individual and matching them to someone who can add real value in that specific area.’
CIPR associate member Ellie Thouret, who has signed up as a mentee, added: ‘I’m looking forward to receiving relevant and individual guidance and advice on developing my career. Having a mentor who is a few years ahead of me will give me the extra insight I need and show me how to work towards specific career goals. The CIPR programme seems an obvious choice due to the wide range of disciplines and experience that its members cover.’
A team of CIPR mentors is currently being assembled, to feature senior PR practitioners from across the profession.