What’s the purpose of this form? Who is it for?
This form is aimed at Finnish and international tech sector entrepreneurs, leaders, investors and/or experts (any gender), who would like to support as mentors Tech Nordic Advocates / City of Helsinki and partners’ International Mentoring Programme, to help (aspiring) Female Tech Founders in Helsinki/Finland launch, grow and scale digital/tech businesses. The form describes the content of the Programme, mentor role and expectations, what’s in it for you, and how to join the Programme as mentor.
What is the International Mentoring Programme?
The Programme offers selected (following application) high potential (aspiring) female tech founders in Helsinki/Finland:
- Hands-on mentoring: 2 hand-picked Finnish and/or international “Rockstar” mentors to match individual goals. Time: up to 10 hours per month, i.e. 5 hours/month per mentor (to be agreed with each mentor based on needs)
- “Office Hours” with experts: Access to 1:1, tailored, business, legal, financial and technical suppor, delivered by Tech Nordic Advocates’ and partner professional advisors and experts in Helsinki, Finland and internationally. Time: up to 5 hours per month
- Skills development: Training in the ‘hard’ (e.g. business plan, selling) and ‘soft’ skills (e.g. personal branding, communications skills) needed to launch, grow and scale a tech business, delivered by Finnish and international experts, in peer groups, to stimulate learning, sharing, and networking. Mix of virtual and physical events (subject to Covid restrictions). Time: 3-5 hours per month
- Community events & networking: Access to relevant Finnish, Nordic/Baltic and international events and networks outside the Programme through Tech Nordic Advocates and Global Tech Advocates. Time: variable
- Access to Finnish, Nordic/Baltic and global networks: Access to Tech Nordic Advocates and Global Tech Advocates impact ecosystem. Time: variable
The aim and contents of 1-5 is to help Programme participants acquire the skills, support, access to peers, talent and networks in Finland and internationally to help them launch, grow and scale tech businesses, including internationally.
Who will join the Programme as mentees?
The Programme is aimed at highly motivated women with a great tech business idea and/or existing female tech founders who need support to grow/scale their business, all with an entrepreneurial mindset and drive to succeed through this high-impact Programme. Mentees may come from 3 groups:
- Pre-startup (Group 1): Women in employment/finishing university/not currently working/have lost their jobs due to the Coronavirus pandemic, who are considering launching a tech startup and need support from female peers, role models and mentors to get started
- Startup founders/leaders (Group 2): female tech founders who need support, knowledge/experience share, new skills, guidance and advice from peers, mentors, investors and professional advisors to grow their businesses
- Scaleup founders/leaders (Group 3): The same needs as Group 2 AND need to build international networks and support to expand in international markets
Why an International Mentoring Programme?
Helsinki and Finland aim to sustain its leadership position as international tech innovation frontrunner. To achieve that, Helsinki/Finland need to use all its talent. However, few women choose to launch businesses in high growth, high risk sectors such as tech. So the City of Helsinki and partners have commissioned Tech Nordic Advocates to deliver our successful international mentoring programme, to help them achieve that goal. At the end of the Programme, mentees will produce an executable business/growth plan to launch/grow/scale a tech startup. The Programme is set up to give mentees the support they need to achieve that.
How many mentees will need mentoring?
The Programme will support 60 mentees per year through 2022 and 2023 i.e. 120 mentees in total. Each year is divided into 3 cohorts with 20 participants in each. Cohort 1 starts February 2022. Cohort 2 starts April 2022. Cohort 3 starts June 2022.
What’s the role of Mentors?
Finnish and international mentors play a crucial role in helping selected mentees and the Programme as a whole achieve the stated goals. As per theabove, the Programme offers selected mentees two mentors each to support them.
The Programme is looking for Finnish/international male/female/any gender mentors with a mix of entrepreneurial business/technical/sales/marketing/specific industry sector expertise, hard (e.g. business planning)/soft (e.g personal branding) skills and and a track record as entrepreneurs/business leaders/experts/investors. Mentees are matched with 2 mentors, based on their stated preferences and mentor profiles.
What’s Required of Programme Mentors?
Mentors must be able to offer-up to 5 hours’ mentoring per month (meetings, email and document review time), to be agreed between each mentee and her two mentors directly.
Mentees ‘own’ the responsibility for their time on the Programme. Mentors support by adding expertise and experience in specific areas, general advice, review of draft documents, access to own networks and moral support.
What’s in it for Mentors?
Mentoring is so established now – all great leaders know how important and valuable mentoring is for mentees AND mentors. See why here