We equip mentors with the skills to nurture diverse talent and lead industry change.

Our model is designed so that everyone wins: supportive careers guidance for students; training and development for mentors; access to diverse talent for creative businesses.
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Duration: 16- week mentor training programme including:
• 5 in-person training session (time commitment 10 hours).
• 8 mentor meetings (time commitment 18hours).

Total time commitment: 18 hours

Course intakes: January - April; June - September; September - December

Course fee: £900 per place

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Session overview

Session 1:

An introduction to our programme, looking at the causes of under-representation in the creative industries.

Session 2:

We explore the impact of social capital and strategies to support students to start building their networks.

Session 3:

We introduce coaching and look at  how to encourage reflection in others.

Session 4:

We delve deeper in coaching practices, using the GROW model

Session 5:

We focus on how mentors can use their experience mentoring with CMN to become agents for inclusion in their workplace.

Mentor Training

Our 16 week certificated Mentor Development Programme (MDP) is delivered in partnership with Koreo.

1. Launch

Mentors from across the creative industries meet each other and the students they’re supporting for our launch event that marks the start of our programme.

2. Mentor Training

Through a mixture of workshops and roundtable discussions, we explore the barriers to entry for young people from low-income backgrounds, theories surrounding social mobility, diversity and inclusion, and coaching strategies to empower young people to lead their own progression.

3. Mentoring

Mentors and mentees meet for one-to-one sessions. Mentors apply these new coaching and mentoring skills in fortnightly sessions of up to 1 hour, supporting mentees to:

  • Build their professional networks
  • Grow their understanding of the creative industries
  • Develop soft skills they need to achieve their potential

4. Graduation

CMN mentors and their mentees graduate from the programme. Students present on what they've learned during their mentoring journey. This is a chance for our young people to reflect on their progress but also to practice networking.

Our training covers

Coaching & leadership
You'll learn coaching strategies, explore questioning and listening techniques, and develop yourself as a coach through our certificated programme.

Social mobility
We consider theories surrounding social capital, industry access and inclusivity — as well as the business benefits of a more diverse workforce so you become an agent for better representation within your organisation.

Nurturing talent 
We explore the value of reflection, helping you work with your mentee so they begin to drive their own learning and development beyond CMN.
>>Download our course outline

CMN INdustry benchmark

Our benchmark indicates creative companies who invest in nurturing diverse talent from an early age.

Get your company on board

CMN Partner Membership

Gold Partner

Group cohort of up to 25 mentors

Bespoke training sessions

FREE taster session to promote across your organisation

Bespoke event at your office to promote your internship / apprenticeship programme to our diverse network of young people

FREE posts on Collective jobs board

Featured jobs in our Collective newsletter

Bespoke impact report

Gold CMN Kitemark

Silver Partner

6 places on our Mentor Training Programme

Bespoke event at your office to promote your internship / apprenticeship programme to our diverse network of young people

FREE posts on our Collective jobs board

Featured jobs in our Collective newsletter

Silver CMN Kitemark

Bronze Partner

3 places on our Mentor Training Programme

FREE posts on our Collective jobs board

Featured jobs in our Collective newsletter

Bronze CMN Kitemark

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What is coaching?

Fundamentally, coaching is about helping an individual to improve their own performance, or helping them to learn. At CMN, we make a distinction between coaching and mentoring. We encourage our mentors to be both, depending on the kind of support needed.

A mentor has a level of maturity around a topic that enables them to offer opinions based on understanding. A coach doesn't necessarily need to anything about the topic they are helping their subject explore. Instead, through listening and asking questions, a coach can help their subject set their own objectives and plan how to meet them.

How do mentees get on the programme?

We work with schools across London. We run assemblies in which we talk to the students about what the creative industries are and how mentoring works. Schools offer the opportunity out to their students, who then apply directly to us. There are 3 stages to the application - a short written application, a phone interview and an assessment day. We aim to support talented and driven students who stand to gain the most from the process, so we also work on teacher referral.

Are mentees still at school?

Almost all of our mentees are still at school, studying for their AS or A Levels. CMN mentoring is an extra-curricular commitment for them. This means mentor meeting will be scheduled outside of school hours during term time. Generally speaking, school finishes at 3.30pm so this should mean meetings are best organised in the afternoon during term time.

What is included in the creative industries?

According to the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, the creative industries are those with a creative output. This includes design and fashion; advertising and marketing; architecture; crafts; film, TV, video, radio and photography; music, performing and visual arts; museums, galleries and libraries; publishing; and IT, software and computer services. We work with mentors across these sectors, also those working in non-creative roles. We also work with creatively minded individuals working outside of the creative industries - those in marketing or business development for non-creative industry businesses, for example.

I didn't realise there was a cost involved. Can I mentor without doing the course?

Unfortunately not, for two reasons. First of all, our model is designed so that our mentors have a positive and significant impact on the young people we're working with. There is much research, most notably a study by the Sutton Trust, that finds mentors who aren't supported and trained can in some cases be worse than no mentoring at all when working with vulnerable young people. Second, our Mentor Development Programme is designed as a way of incentivising businesses to play an active part in diversifying their workforce and investing in inclusion.

I'm a freelancer, can I still mentor?

Absolutely! We welcome creatives in all sorts of setups. On each cohort of mentors, we keep a number of supported places at a lower cost for those working on their own. Get in touch to find out more.

I'm a young person, I'd like a mentor – how do I apply

Send our founder an email at isabel@creativementornetwork.org  We usually work directly with schools so we'll probably need to get your teacher onboard.

Where will I meet my mentee? Will you be there?

We usually recommend you arrange to meet up with your mentee at your place of work. They'll find it interesting seeing where you work, meeting colleagues and understanding the whole environment. Young people have travel cards and are happy to travel to your area of town, as long as it's not too late in the evening.

What level of commitment is expected of me as a mentor?

Over the 16 weeks, we run 5 x 2 hour training sessions in the morning, during the week. Outside of these, we recommend you arrange to meet up with your mentee every 2 weeks for up to an hour. You and your mentee will arrange meetings over email so you can fit them in around both of your schedules.