January is National Mentoring Month!
Mentors are a critical aspect of any thriving entrepreneurial ecosystem. They support and guide entrepreneurs by sharing their experience, knowledge, network, and best practices. Stories of their success and failure can be great sources of inspiration for aspiring entrepreneurs. Mentors have the ability to steer entrepreneurs toward success by listening, challenging, and supporting them throughout the process. They provide ‘realistic optimism’ for the mentee when it comes to addressing the mentee’s challenges, and can reveal blind spots the entrepreneur may have about their idea or business. It can truly be a life-changing relationship!
“My S2V mentor, Cindi Reading, was a very big help to move me forward in a decisive direction and move out of analysis paralysis. She had a wealth of sage advice on software, to help with things such as page load time and documentation, and provided a source of accountability for my tasks and progress. She also put me in touch with a great student intern at JMU! All around, having a mentor was a very encouraging and supportive experience!” said David Rosenberg, founder of Budget Referee, about his mentor relationship during the Startup Shenandoah Valley accelerator program.
A Call for Mentors
SCCF is looking for mentors from all backgrounds, with varying experiences and perspectives. Mentors with SCCF interact with entrepreneurs and our greater ecosystem in many different ways:
Although the word “mentor” is a verb, it’s also a noun. It’s a reciprocal title that is given by the mentee, once a relationship of trust and mutual respect has developed. You truly become a mentor when someone refers to you as, “My mentor” - a wonderful and powerful gift!
If you are interested in providing a Shenandoah Valley entrepreneur with your mentorship, please fill out our mentor interest form for more information.
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