5 Outcomes of Speed Mentoring


  1. Protégés will receive advice and leading questions to overcome challenges and see new opportunities.  This is where the question of how much reflective advice can be shared in under 5 minutes – and the answer is not a lot. So this requires two important pieces of preparation for this to be a success: i) share as much information in advance of the event – for The World’s Largest Business Mentoring Event, we are producing mentor guides which include protégé bios and 3 challenges they are facing in their business;  ii) It requires both parties to connect with velocity and skip the small talk (this is the biggest exception to the parallel between speed mentoring and speed dating).
  2. Introduce protégés to a broad and diverse range of prospective mentors.  To steal an adage from an old fairy tale and common dating reference -  ”You have to kiss a lot of frogs before you find your handsome prince.”  This metaphorically applies to finding mentors/protégés too.  It’s hard to know if there’s going to be chemistry in a relationship until you meet.  I was a mentor in a program, where I knew after the response to my first question, that it was going to be a painful 3 month process, because we didn’t click.  I’ve also searched for up to six months to find that special mentor I needed to help me overcome specific challenges.
  3. Showcase the programs that the mentors volunteer with.   Mentorship programs like MaRS Advice have an extensive network of highly-connected mentors.   Meeting with one of them, opens the door to a whole network of possible connections.   Mentors can facilitate “collisions”:  participant-to-participant and participant-to-mentor-–leading to new opportunities for partnership/collaboration/resources.
  4. Build a community of mentors.  I was recently speaking to my friend Chris who volunteered as a mentor for a Summer Company mentoring session I was leading last summer.  He mentioned that he had stayed in touch with Josh who was another one of our mentors and that he’d been in as a speaker/mentor for a number of business startup classes that Josh was teaching at a local college.  The connective tissue that we create between mentors can have a HUGE ripple effect.
  5. Generate introductions to produce long-term mentoring relationships.  This is really the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.  The big “aahhha”s likely won’t come from the speed mentoring interaction – but from the meetings that take place following it.  The questions and advice that are shared at the event are just a prelude to future interactions – where the magic really happens.


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