What types of mentoring are available from NWA SCORE?

iStock_000011550315MediumBy far, the most common reason for small business owners to contact Northwest Arkansas SCORE is to obtain a business mentor. Technology makes it possible for SCORE to offer two forms of mentoring—in person and online.

The lead mentor’s responsibility is bringing the right skills to the client situation, often requiring the involvement of other mentors within the NWA SCORE chapter that bring diverse capabilities to the assignment. When needed, mentors from anywhere in the U.S. can also be called on for highly specialized assistance.

SCORE is the premier small business counseling and advice organization in the United States. We are a national nonprofit, charitable organization composed of more 13,000 volunteer business mentors, both working and retired, who counsel businesses from nearly 350 counseling offices throughout the country. The NWA SCORE office is in Springdale and serves all of Northwest Arkansas and the surrounding area.

NWA SCORE has specific expectations for any mentor, regardless of past experience or type of counselor. These requirements are set to make sure that SCORE continues as an excellent organization that can help them meet their business objectives. We expect all counseling volunteers to complete our training program, be computer literate, perform counseling on a regular basis, and maintain an accurate record of their SCORE-related activities.

The lead mentor is responsible for maintaining regular contact with the client as needed, and for setting up and confirming all counseling meetings. The lead mentor is also responsible for making contact with a newly assigned client within 48 hours to establish a time for the initial meeting. Timely contact is important as the client will expect to hear from SCORE quickly so they can obtain help with their business situation.

Face-to-face (or in person) mentoring can be done at a location that meets the needs and schedule of both the mentor and client. We have available office space in Springdale, Rogers, and Bentonville. Meetings can happen at the client’s place of business or even a quiet local coffee shop.

Once a mentor gains experience working face-to-face with clients, he can begin mentoring clients online. Online mentoring has been available to SCORE clients for nearly 20 years and continues to be a key method for reaching many clients.

Online mentoring is a way to provide invaluable, time-sensitive business mentoring and mentoring services to the busy entrepreneur who seeks immediate guidance in an online format without sacrificing human connection and personal touch. Online mentoring sessions are still one-on-one and provide more human interaction than an information database.

Online counseling increases SCORE’s ability to match clients with volunteer mentors who meet their exact needs regardless of each person’s physical location.

We’re looking for mentors to start immediately with NWA SCORE. Why not explore this unique opportunity to pass along your skills and experience to the Northwest Arkansas business community and area entrepreneurs? Contact us today to start the process.