Mentor Program Frequently Asked Questions
Q: How long will it take for me to get matched up with a team?
A: That depends on several factors, including the number of contestants, timing to complete a mentee profile and the number of mentors looking to be matched. We encourage the teams to complete their profiles promptly. Our volunteer team uses our matching system to pair up contestants and mentors. Matches are based on a variety of factors, including skills, industry experience and geography. You will receive an introduction when you have been matched.
Q: What are the different options for me to get involved in?
A: There are two types of mentors:
Generalist mentors get assigned to one specific team and we ask that you give 4+ hours per week to the team you are mentoring. You will provide general support and feedback across all areas of the business. Mentors get matched up with contestants as soon as the contestants pay and complete their profiles. After the semifinalist announcement, additional generalist mentors will be matched to the semifinalist teams, so many will have 2-3 mentors each.
Specialist mentors are available to all teams in the competition to mentor in one specific area. If you aren't yet matched up, it may be because you have a special area that many teams need help with, but for a limited time. Examples are legal IP or manufacturing sustainability. Semifinalists will have access to a long list of specialist mentors and will be encouraged to contact these mentors when specific help is needed. You may help as many teams as you wish.
Q: What if I don't get matched up with a team? Am I still in the mentor program?
A: We engage unmatched mentors in a variety of programs.
Business clinics are one-on-one consulting sessions and these run in August. We need many mentors to help us with these to act as the consultants and coaches. Look for contact in June/July.
Mock Judging happens in late September. You'll listen to the semifinalists' presentations and offer feedback. Look for contact in August.
Outreach for next year's competition is continually happening. We need your help as a member of the strong group of mentors to find potential contestants. Contact the mentor chair for more information.
Q: As a mentor, do I get to attend events for free?
A: If you are matched to a team, you are invited to attend the majority of our events at no charge. These events include all Briefings, the Academy, Business Clinics, and the Regional Awards Ceremony. The large, national events have a small, discounted fee associated with them. Mentors who do not get matched with a team still receive extra benefits, including participation as mock judges, business clinic mentors and specialist mentors. You are also welcome to attend all contestant-mentor mixers, and of course we welcome you at all our public events.
Q: Can I mentor teams in a different region from which I live?
A: Yes. Just indicate your interest when you update your profile.
Q: As a mentor, how much time will I be expected to give?
A: We ask for 4+ hours per week. Please refer to the Competition Handbook for a thorough explanation of the mentor role.
Role of The Cleantech Open Mentor
How to Sign Up to be a Mentor
The Important Role of Mentors & Angels