Appropriate mentoring has been shown to give significant benefits in terms of career development and progression in commercial and higher education settings. In conventional mentoring, a senior colleague mentors a more junior colleague and although this brings benefits to both mentee and mentor, there are additional benefits in reciprocal mentoring arrangements where there is a two-way relationship. Mentoring can be particularly valuable for those from under-represented groups.

Reciprocal mentoring can be beneficial to both parties, bringing different approaches to problem solving and helping to gain a fresh perspective through working with a more diverse network with varied knowledge. Further benefits can include increased sharing of skills across distinct hierarchies, increased career motivation, and enhanced people skills.

The Supergenerations Mentoring Scheme

To help support career development within the ORE community, we have developed the Supergenerations mentoring programme. This is a reciprocal and intergenerational mentoring framework, across career levels, which will match senior leaders with Early Career Researchers (ECR) and Early Career Industry (ECI) colleagues who will, in turn be paired with PhD students and those on industry training schemes.

We are seeking participants in the scheme at all levels and from all backgrounds. The operation of the scheme is briefly outlined below. In order to assess the effectiveness of the scheme, we will monitor it and seek feedback from participants. Mentoring relationships are all different and we will not seek to impose particular aims or activities.

Finding a mentor/mentee

  • Participants provide personal profile and identify what they would like to get out of a mentoring relationship. These profiles are shared with scheme participants.
  • Based on these profiles:
    • ECR/ECIs identify Senior industrialist/senior academic they would like to be paired with.
    • PhD students/ industry trainees identify ECR/ECIs they would like to be paired with.
  • Participants will receive face-to-face mentoring training, where pairs of mentors and the wider mentoring network will have the opportunity to meet informally.

During the mentoring relationship

  • Pairs will discuss and agree what they want to get out of the relationship, including:
    • how often/when to meet
    • recording of meetings
    • how long the mentoring relationship should be
  • It is encouraged that pairs meet at least twice per year so that some momentum is maintained in the relationship. It is important that there is mutual respect in these discussions and that the subjects discussed remain confidential.
  • A confidential record of the items discussed at the meeting and actions should be completed and shared between the mentoring pair only.
  • Following each meeting, we request that the meeting outcomes be recorded but no further details are reported

Find out more

Further information about the mentoring scheme is available to download in a PDF booklet.

Supergen ORE Hub Core Partners