Mentoring NOW+

What is Mentoring_N.O.W.+ ?

Mentoring_now is a virtual meeting once a month via webex which brings together a range of people from diverse backgrounds to talk about issues related to the workplace.

The joint hosts are CSIRO Agriculture & Food and CSIRO Land & Water.

All are welcome to join our meetings.

Why Mentoring_N.O.W.+ ?

Our support network gives you the opportunity to connect with others and continues to grow since it was started in 2018.

The initial reason that this group was set up was that we felt that there were not many diverse senior people (including women) in CSIRO and that they were too busy to mentor everyone one-on-one.  Also, as we are spread across many sites, it can be difficult to engage with suitable mentors.

Dr Jaci Brown, a Senior Research Scientist in AF and Dr Colleen MacMillan co-founded the activity, and together with A&F, I&D and L&W this initiative has expanded.

Mentoring NOW+ provides:

  1. A way for diverse people to efficiently mentor many at once
  2. A way to encourage mentorship relationships to develop by providing a space for CSIRO staff to meet each other and find someone that ‘fits’ their needs
  3. Community mentoring so you can access the best advice from the many different sources.

What will they talk about?

Each meeting will have a topic and initial panel discussion. The conversation is free to flow in any direction as the need arises. Some meetings may have special external guests to speak on a topic as a catalyst for conversations.

Example topics might come from the book – Nice girls don’t get the corner office, or The Guilty Feminist Podcasts. There are also topics such as organisational issues, and importantly the solutions, like those raised in the short film “STEMM’s got talent but nearly lost it” that could be also be discussion points.

What Mentoring_N.O.W. is NOT about.

  • Only discussing childcare related issues.
  • Complaining, and being negative
  • Only hearing from super successful women – all experiences, levels and roles should be included.
  • Exclusion of men

Expected Impacts and Outcomes

  • Mentorships (formal and informal) developing organically.
  • A sense of value achieved from supporting and mentoring others.
  • Opportunities to identify needs of particular groups that might be addressed beyond this Chat space. e.g extra targeted workshops. Any session could culminate in a suggestion to the AF I&D leadership team, for action / implementation / resourcing
  • Retaining more women in CSIRO and breaking the ‘scissor graph.’
  • Participating in these workshops as a MENTOR will give a measurable quantity to put on an APA or promotion case, and this is becoming more recognised as an important attribute in science orgs .c.f a specific Prize now e.g. Eureka Prize for Outstanding Mentor