Uff.. this week I’m packed with so much work!! That’s natural after spending a wonderful week in Colombia, meeting very bright people and enjoying the lovely weather/culture! For the Spanish speakers, there is a Nicaraguan saying: “Despues de un gustazo, un trancazo!” Haha.
Anyways, I’ve mentioned to you all our new initiative with MercyCorps…But to save you some trouble, I’m going to recapitulate and elaborate:
As ANDE members, Agora and MercyCorps recognize that growth-focused entrepreneurs have the potential to be a potent driver of sustainable economic development and job generation in the developing world; particularly when they have access to the advice, know-how, and connections needed to build a thriving enterprise.
This is why we have developed a new pilot project called “GLOBAL MENTORING PLATFORM FOR SMALL & GROWING BUSINESSES”, with this project, Agora Partnerships and Mercy Corps will offer a new and innovative approach to providing business mentoring to small and growing businesses (SGBs) in developing economies worldwide—dramatically increasing entrepreneurs’ access to the critical business management know-how and industry-specific expertise needed to start and grow a successful enterprises. The project will adapt Mercy Corps’ MicroMentor service for the international SGB market, offering ANDE members and the SGB sector-at-large with a scalable mechanism for efficiently providing mentoring services to their clients and more effectively engaging volunteer business professionals in their work.
As the pilot gets underway, we will be seeking volunteer business mentors who speak Spanish and ideally who understand the local business context in Nicaragua and El Salvador (or, more broadly, Latin America). If you would like to learn more about the project, or about getting involved as a mentor (including involving your corporate or professional networks), please contact me.
This past week we added the final touches to the budget, and are currently finishing a more detailed statement of work. We will begin working on the project in May!
This means we will be working alongside MicroMentor to provide feedback on our local market research, conduct client surveys and/or focus groups, provide feedback on pilot program roadmap and develop internal pilot roll-out plans… and this is just Phase 1! I can’t wait!