A FITNESS teacher specialising in pole dancing has trained to become a mentor to help small firms.
Aimee Lawson, who runs Northern Pole Dance, offers fitness training classes in pole dancing, Aerial Yoga and TriFly, as well as workshops and masterclasses.
Newcastle-based Ms Lawon said: “I was forced to learn everything about my business from the mistakes I have made. If a mentor had given me the support and guidance I was missing, I could have saved myself a lot of time, money and headaches.
“It’s for that very reason that I wanted to complete the training with Get Mentoring. I get a great deal of satisfaction in helping others to achieve things too.”
Get Mentoring is funded by the Government and aims to train thousands of volunteer business mentors nationwide. But the deadline for free training is fast approaching and would-be mentors only have until December 31 to register.
Those who undertake the training must be able to volunteer an hour a month for two years as a volunteer mentor.
Research from the National Federation of Enterprise Agencies found that 70% of small businesses who received mentoring survived for five years or more – double the rate compared with non-mentored entrepreneurs.
And 20% of mentored businesses are more likely to grow and expand when compared to non-mentored companies.
Ms Lawson said: “Mentoring is about working with others towards a goal. It’s about being patient and providing the right guidance to help others think outside the box; showing them a path they might not have considered before.
“We have lots of keen and experienced business owners across the North East who would make excellent mentors to help guide a new generation of entrepreneurs, and particularly mumpreneurs, to make our region a centre for business growth – we just need the volunteers to make it possible.”
Get Mentoring is run by the Small Firms Enterprise Development Initiative (SFEDI).
Ruth Lowbridge, executive chair of SFEDI said: “Completing the course and getting involved in mentoring can not only make a huge difference to a start-up or small business, it can really help the mentor reflect on their skills and future ambitions for their own business.”