27 January 2021

Reach your full entrepreneurship potential, with a mentor

Auteur : Sherbrooke Innopole

Did you know? 70% of mentored small business owners make it past the critical five-year mark, which is twice as many as their non-mentored peers.*

Mentors are or were entrepreneurs. They know what you are going through. They understand the daily challenges you are faced with. However, they are not experts, coaches, nor psychologists. They are men and women that will bring out the best in you through listening and sharing their experience.

As the mentoring month comes to an end, Alain Delorme and Carole Rudzinski, head mentors for the Sherbrooke Innopole’s mentoring cell, can attest to the benefits of this approach. The mentors, affiliated with Réseau Mentorat, are volunteers and receive ongoing training to adequately play their role. They offer their support to innovative entrepreneurs, from the beginner to the experienced leader, who have questions and wish to blossom.

If you want to go quick, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.

In the same way a true friend would, the mentor develops, with the mentee, a solid relationship based on kindness. “We are there to help entrepreneurs grow. As the relationship develops, we can see entrepreneurs gain confidence and focus their efforts better”, said Alain Delorme.

Knowing yourself better

The mentors’ role is not to give advice nor to make suggestions or recommendations. Their insight, their experience and their knowledge of the field allow them to ask the right questions. For Mr. Delorme, “The better entrepreneurs know themselves, their strengths and limits, the better informed their decisions will be”.

Mulling ideas over without fear of being judged

“We offer a safe and confidential space where entrepreneurs can express themselves. Sometimes, simply talking about a situation helps to see things more clearly. We don’t only share difficulties, but also successes, ideas and projects”, said Carole Rudzinski.

Breaking the isolation

Because mentors and mentees can talk about anything, whether it is their business, their family, what goes well or what is difficult, their relationship contributes to breaking the isolation. Entrepreneurs are not alone.

Taking a step back

“Every day, entrepreneurs have to make quick decisions. However, they don’t always take the time to evaluate options. With a mentor, they can take a step back and as they think out loud about different solutions, everything suddenly becomes clearer”, said Mr. Delorme.

Going at your own pace

“We are not there to push entrepreneurs nor to hold them back. We focus on conversation. Although it doesn’t stop us from reaching our objectives, it is not the end goal. I can still remember bits of conversations I had with my mentor! It has helped me many times!”, said Mrs. Rudzinski.


Mentees’ profiles are as diverse as those of the mentors. Sherbrooke Innopole will take the time to analyse your needs, then propose, among 40 mentors, one that best matches your profile.

Sherbrooke Innopole also offers group mentoring which allows entrepreneurs to discuss various topics during each meeting. Stay tuned! An information session will be offered soon!

For more information, contact:

Michelle Dallaire
Business Mentoring Coordinator / 819 452-4242



*Source: Réseau Mentorat

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Sherbrooke Innopole’s mandate ends on March 31, 2024. We invite you to contact Entreprendre Sherbrooke or the Service du développement économique of the Ville de Sherbrooke for further services.
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