We created our mentorship program to connect new vendors with veterans who can help guide them through their first show experience, and we’ve seen great friendships and successes grow out of this vital program. But now, as the retail (and One Of A Kind) landscape changes faster than ever before, we want to help all vendors connect with the resources they need to create a successful show experience. So, we’re taking advantage of Facebook’s new Mentorship feature to make the most of the wisdom and generosity of all members of our amazing community.
Our new Facebook-based Mentorship allows us to open up this program to vendors of all skills and experience, whether as a mentor or mentee. All you need to do is create a profile listing your areas of expertise or assistance, then match or be matched with available partners. Start a conversation and get to know potential partners, then pick your match and Facebook will guide you through a program of regular check-ins toward your ultimate goals.
We encourage you to consider participating on both sides of the program, to learn as well as share skills. Modern creative businesses need a whole arsenal of skills for success, and veteran vendors may need help with different areas than those just starting out. So, think outside of the box and examine what skills you might have to share for the betterment of the whole One Of A Kind community!
Follow these steps to sign up.
- Head to www.facebook.com/groups/oneofakindshowartisans/mentorship_application or select “Mentorship” in the left sidebar of the Artisan Facebook Group.
- Sign up to ‘Offer Support’ or ‘Get Support’ and create a profile that lists your expertise or areas you need guidance. Make sure to also include information about how and how much you prefer to communicate, so that people can decide if your availability matches their needs.
- Browse through the profiles of potential partners to learn about their expertise and see all the posts they’ve contributed previously in the Artisan Facebook Group. Click “Start a Conversation” to connect one-on-one in Facebook Messenger with anyone you might like to match with. Others will also have the ability to start a conversation with you. From there, you will have a few days to get to know your potential partner and make sure they are a good fit before the actual mentorship begins.
- Then, each week, you will receive guided prompts to check in with your partner on progress towards goals over the 7 weeks of the program. Your first task will be to discuss and set overall goals for your time together. Most people spend about a half an hour a week talking to their partners and reviewing the steps of the program, but you can set those expectations in your profile or when you first connect, if you prefer something different.
- Note that your profile will remain active, even after you have matched. If you would like to connect with additional mentors/mentees, you can leave your profile active. Otherwise, make sure to take your profile down to indicate that you are no longer available.
Not Comfortable on Facebook?
Not to worry! To ease the transition, we’ll still offer our traditional mentor matchmaking services, which you can sign up for here. Note that this version of the program is only open to new vendors looking for guidance. Ultimately, we do encourage you to try and dive into this new Facebook program, as it streamlines the process and provides many benefits that our traditional program does not, but we will match mentees looking for a more traditional email/phone connection.