A new music mentoring scheme is giving female artists the chance to learn and be inspired by women with industry expertise.
Janelle Monae had Prince. Bob Dylan had Woodie Guthrie. And Iggy Pop had David Bowie. Yes, some of the biggest stars in the business have benefited from having a music mentor, someone willing to share their hard-earned wisdom, and offer encouragement and a little bit of tough love.
In any industry, a good mentor can be a hugely positive influence. In the notoriously competitive music industry, where the potential pitfalls are numerous and varied, a mentor can be especially valuable.
That’s why the Musicians’ Union (MU) has joined forces with shesaid.so to create a music mentoring scheme for women. It will match female musicians together, to help one another grow and succeed in their careers.
MU Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Official John Shortell says the idea for the scheme came from members themselves.
“We know female musicians make up a small percentage of festival line-ups globally and representation of females in other sectors of the industry still isn’t where it should be,” he says.
“I hope that that the mentoring scheme will empower our female members by giving them a meaningful opportunity to learn from female role models who have overcome barriers in the industry and paved the way for future generations of female musicians.”
The MU is looking for female musicians to join the scheme as either a mentor or mentee. If you’re still trying to establish yourself in the industry and feel you would benefit from the scheme, consider applying as a mentee. If you are an experienced professional looking to give something back, then why not consider applying as a mentor.
How the scheme will work
Each mentor and mentee will meet for a minimum of two hours per month and take part in professional development events.
Pairs will also be assigned their own Mentoring Manager who will spend time with either side of the partnership at least once a month, measuring satisfaction and taking feedback.
The aim is to select 20 women to take part in the scheme – 10 mentors and 10 mentees.
What is expected of mentors?
Mentors are not expected to open their personal contact book or become a teacher, agent or producer.
But they are expected to provide consistent, confidential, impartial and non-judgemental guidance and support. All mentors will receive mentoring training to make sure they are equipped with the right skills.
What is expected of a mentee?
The scheme isn’t about being handed opportunities on a plate, it’s about discovering how to create your own opportunities. Mentees are expected to take responsibility for their own learning and to accept challenges and constructive feedback. As they say, you get back what you put in.
It’s a voluntary relationship, which either party can end at any time.
How to apply
To find out more about how to apply CLICK HERE. Pairs will be announced in early May.