A great way to develop your career, no matter what form it takes and where you’re thinking of developing your skills, is to participate in a mentoring program and connect with someone who has had similar experiences to you and have had the benefits of a longer engagement in the work you commonly share, whether it’s in the fashion industry, as a writer, visual artist, or even as a lawyer.
Mentoring is also a very rewarding opportunity for someone who has worked in their industry for a while to give something back, to encourage someone who’s earlier on in their career, whether they’re just starting out, or at a crucial decision making junction in their career path. Mentoring can take the form of helping develop skills, or it may be about connecting the mentee with industry contacts, or it could be helping make a decision or how to handle someone or something in the workplace, workshop, theatre or studio. The mentor plays a supportive role using their life experience as well as transferring skills and guidance from their working life.
Arts Law has recently created a Mentoring Agreement template for a mentor and mentee to sign off on. This contract encourages the two people who are planning on joining together as mentor and mentee to think about what they want to get out of the project and what steps they need to agree to take along the way to make it work best for them. It covers things like:
- How long the relationship will last
- What goals do you want to achieve
- When will you meet and how long for
- What the expectations are of both people
- It makes it clear that the copyright and moral rights remain with the mentee, unless the parties agree otherwise in which case this needs to be recorded in the agreement
- Will there be a fee – set this out in the contract.
It joins a mentoring agreement template we have which is specifically for writers, of books and screenplays.
Mentoring is different from a partnership, it is a more supportive role where the decisions about what advice to accept or not ultimately rests with the mentee.
These templates can be found on our website here: https://www.artslaw.com.au/product/mentoring-agreement/