To complement the RTPI NUTURE programme RTPI South West are facilitating a range of mentoring opportunities so that planners have a dedicated place to find the support that they need to get the best out of their career. This may be ad hoc support through 'Ask a fellow planner' or more regular 'mentoring'.
1. Ask a fellow planner
Do you have a question about your career or are you dealing with problem or issue at work? Sometimes having a mentor or fellow planner to bounce ideas and problems around with can be helpful. We have set up an on-demand service to help you find someone that can work through specific issues with.
If you're interested, please send your request to [email protected]. We will need an idea of what area you work in (to limit the possibility of conflict of interest) and an idea of the type of issue you're facing (to help us pair you with someone who may be able to assist). We will pass it on to one of our RTPI South West mentors who would be happy to assist - either by return of email or via a quick call!
What this service is for?
- The primary aim of this service is to provide a forum for ad-hoc advice and a 'sounding board' for questions and answers between likeminded planners.
- A key benefit of the service will be to support those who don't currently have any formal mentoring in place but have occasional queries which they need assistance with
- The service is open to all, whether Chartered, Associate or working towards your Chartership.
What this service is not for?
- Questions and thoughts relating to the APC process - please instead look here in the first instance
- General or specific planning advice - for that, please look at the Planning Practice Papers
2. Regular Mentoring (early career)
Mentoring is a professional relationship that supports learning and development. It aims to help individuals to achieve their goals, develop their knowledge and discuss ideas. RTPI South West are supporting those in the first few years of their career to connect with a mentor in the region.
Mentoring has significant benefits for both mentors and mentees:
- Having a mentor can improve your chances of APC success, particularly if the mentors have recent experience of the process.
- Provides an opportunity to engage with planners that you may not have worked with before and network with their wider connections.
- Mentoring can encourage recruitment opportunities through increased networking.
- Provides opportunities for like-minded planners to discuss projects and, indeed, for those with different backgrounds to also consider each other’s perspective.
- There are potential mental health benefits, simply just by talking issues through with other professionals, but also by having a space outside of your employment to discuss planning-related matters and professional development.
- Mentoring can boost the confidence of both the mentor and mentee.
- Broadens and improves experience for inclusion on a CV.
- Matching mentors and mentees will encourage skill sharing and could identify new ways of problem solving by discussing work issues. In the long-term, and if widespread, this scheme could see planning processes improved as professionals work together.
This mentorship scheme is specifically aimed at planners at the start of their career such as students between 1-5 years following graduation and licentiates that are considering or actively preparing for their upcoming L-APC or DA-APC submission.
In general, planners who have recently passed their APC or Chartered members that have 5+ years’ experience will be considered for mentor roles. However, these conditions can be flexible depending on circumstances and feedback from respondents.
We are looking for individuals from all parts of the planning sector. Whilst some mentee candidates may have very specific requirements in terms of background experience or time commitments from their prospective mentor, mentorship can be provided by like-minded planners or indeed those from a very different planning background, who can equally contribute to the start of a planner’s career.
The skills and resources required to mentor a junior planner will vary significantly from person to person. That is why it is important to develop a programme which matches individuals based on their specific skills set and development needs. There will be opportunities to mentor with monthly or fortnightly virtual catch-ups or email exchanges right through to face-to-face meeting and review of APC submissions. The key is to enable a flexible programme to meet individuals’ needs and for those involved to be realistic about the resource that they are able to give.
How to apply
Mentee applications - complete this form
Mentor applications - complete this form
What can you expect after applying?
Your application will be acknowledged. Then an RTPI member from the working group for this programme will assess your application and pair you with a mentor which best fits your professional aims.
You will then be connected to the mentor over email and encouraged to arrange an initial virtual or in-person meeting to discuss what you would both like to get out of mentoring, ensuring it is a of professional value to both.
The RTPI South West coordinator will be in regular contact to see how the mentoring is going and provide on going support as required.
The mentoring programme is as long as mutually agreed by both parties.
For more information on mentoring including resources for mentors and mentees please visit our mentoring hub
If you have any enquiries, please contact [email protected]