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Mentoring Levels

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Mentoring Assistance - Level Matching

The Web Mason staff developed precise strategies to match specific large businesses with small businesses that can best benefit from: the particular expertise of the large business, and from the forms of assistance a large business is able and willing to provide. Business assessment procedures were created to define the needs of both the Prime Contractor/ Mentoring Assistance Firms as well as the Small Business/ Subcontractor/Protégé firms. Here are descriptions of four kinds of resulting linkages that can occur:
Level 1 Matching: Intangible Benefits
Since the small business population in the service area was composed of firms in a variety of development stages, our research found that a significant percentage of these firms lack even the basic essential business skills necessary to achieve “tangible income results” types of linkages such as: contracts, joint ventures, partnerships, and large business investments. At the same time, many large company mentor prospects have no mentor program currently in place; many may not yet even be willing to establish a program initially. Nonetheless, The Web Mason staff crafted the scope of work on this contract to encourage linkages that will provide opportunities for learning, information, networking and collaboration; these “Intangible Benefits” types of relationships can eventually result in income producing linkages for a number of small businesses, while providing exposure to large companies contemplating the establishment of a more formal mentoring program.
Level 2 Matching: Income Producing Benefits
A significant percentage of small businesses will benefit from “tangible non-contract results” types of linkages with large companies such as: management and technical assistance, and improving technologies. Once again, these linkages can be made with large companies that may or may not have a mentor program in place. However, the linkage will likely have an “Income Producing” effect for the small business by improved efficiencies such as: better estimating systems, enhanced financial record keeping, improved project management resource planning, etc.
Level 3 Matching: Profitability Enhancement Benefits
Large corporation referrals, of a small business, for accessing capital or contracting opportunities, and endorsement from large companies for greater credibility would be examples of linkages that result in “Tangible Profitability Enhancement” results for the small business. A large company with no mentor program can once again accomplish this linkage. However, it would be characteristic of a business relationship that may have been cultivated through Level 1 or 2 Matching situations, or by a linkage between a large corporation in a different industry from the small business (Example: Insurance company referral of a landscaping firm to large corporate developer).
Level 4 Matching: Contract and/or Tangible Income Benefits
A large company with a mentoring program in place coupled with a small business possessing most of the critical essential business skills, typifies the “Tangible Income Benefits” linkages such as: contracts, joint ventures, partnerships, and large business investments. One or both of the businesses may have cultivated the relationship from Level 1 to this point. Linkages at this level are more apt to be successful because: both parties have already predetermined their strategic needs and the criteria for a partner firm that can best meet those needs, reasonable goals for the outcome of these relationships can be met because of the degree of trust that has been developed by the parties in the mentoring process.
Would your firm like to discuss development of a mentoring program? Or would your company like an evaluation of its’ contract compliance to a mentoring or subcontracting provision? Click HERE to submit a Contact Form, or use the  link below to send an email.

The Web Mason   PO Box 788 Matteson, IL. 60443