Mentoring for Professional Registration

Guidance for Mentors

Mentoring for registration

This guidance is for members who are already registered and want to help an engineering professional gain registration via the Society. Please click on the highlighted words below for more information.

Generally, mentors provide expertise to less experienced individuals to help them advance their careers, enhance their education, and build their networks. In many different arenas people have benefited from being part of a mentoring relationship; Wikipedia lists the following: 

  • Business people - Freddie Laker mentored Richard Branson
  • Politicians - Aristotle mentored Alexander the Great
  • Directors - Martin Scorsese mentored Oliver Stone
  • Musicians - Johann Christian Bach mentored Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. Dr Dred mentors Eminem

As a mentor for registration your aim is to help the mentee advance their experience, knowledge and training to enable them to demonstrate the required competences and commitment for EngTech, CEng or IEng.

If the mentee is not already a member, the Society encourages them to join online as an Affiliate and receive benefits straight away such as free monthly magazines, career guidance and attendance at over 300 lectures held worldwide. When they are ready, they can apply for an upgrade to ARAeS and EngTech, AMRAeS and IEng, or MRAeS and CEng.

Registration guidance gives information on the education and professional development requirements for each grade. You are also welcome to visit the list of all our branches in the UK and around the world; a number of them offer support for members who want to gain registration.

The most important document on registration is Engineering Council's UK Standard for Professional Engineering Competence (UK-SPEC: http://www.engc.org.uk/professional- qualifications/standards/uk-spec ) which sets out the competences A - E and commitment for registration that the mentee must demonstrate. 

You both are encouraged to keep an eye on the EngTech, IEng and CEng Professional Review and Interview page on the Society's web site as it contains everything you need to know. The most important document is the Qualifying Report. In addition, the form that assessors fill in after the interview is also included; you may wish to download it to see the criteria used to assess candidates.

Preparing for your first meeting

Once you and the mentee agree to work together, decide a plan of action and only make promises that you can keep. Below are some questions to get things started:

  • Does your employer have a Training & Development Manual? If you are on a training scheme, are the competency statements comparable to those in UK-SPEC? Are you taught communications skills, e.g. report writing and presentation skills? Does your employer provide attitude and teamwork training?
  • Have you a Development Action Plan?
  • Have you a list of training courses attended?
  • Are you familiar with UK-SPEC?
  • Do you maintain a logbook or are you using an on-line PDS such as mypath?
  • How will you gain experience of Finance and Marketing?
  • Do you give talks to local schools etc?
  • Do you belong to the Society and attend local Branch meetings etc?

 Preparing for follow-up discussions

It is not always practical to have face to face discussions with the mentee, it can be done over the phone or by email. However, the preparation for each discussion is important and below is some guidance that you might find useful.

Before the discussion 

  • Review the notes of any previous discussions and decide on a structure for this discussion
  • Be aware of the competence statements A - E
  • Confirm time and date based on prior agreement
  • Make a plan for the discussion
  • Relax – irrespective of your own issues and challenges 

During the discussion

  •  Be welcoming and not too formal
  • Chat about something light as an introduction
  • Check how the mentee is feeling today
  • Briefly summarise the notes of the previous meeting
  • Update status of any actions that were agreed
  • Jointly establish the “gap” between the individual's capabilities and the requirements for registration – develop an action plan to plug the gap. Consider how confident you are that the individual is
  • Listen actively (Remember that “silent” is an anagram of “listen”)
  • Agree „confidentiality clause‟
  • Check for feelings as well as facts
  • Ask open questions
  • Build on the Mentee's own ideas
  • Be honest, supportive, encouraging
  • Share your thoughts and ideas but don't give advice
  • Take notes (or ask the mentee to do so)
  • Summarise actions
  • Agree date/time for next discussion

After the discussion

Send a brief note to summarise actions (or delegate this to the mentee) Do anything that you have promised to do promptly

Keep in touch between discussions e.g.: How did the trip to XYZ go; I saw this article in the journal of the Institute of ABC and thought you might be interested; had you thought of entering for this…..; I‟m going to a conference sponsored by the Institute of ABC and thought you would like to join me

My Career Path  

The Society, in conjunction with the Engineering UK, has developed My Career Path which is an online Professional Development Tool. It is a straightforward electronic log book for mentees to record their experience, knowledge and training against each competence in UK-SPEC and includes the option to email evidence to mentors for review. Unlike schemes offered by other professional engineering institutions, such as IMechE's Monitored Professional Development Scheme (MPDS), users of My Career Path have sole responsibility for ensuring records are regularly reviewed and updated in conjunction with or without a mentor. 

Mentees working for a large company might already be on a company PDS and use a manual log book to record progress but a number of companies are now encouraging them to use an on-line PDS such as My Career Path. By the way, the Society has accredited over 25 professional developments schemes run by companies and the UK armed forces. 

Please email membership@aerosociety.com if you wish to speak to someone on membership or if you would like to learn more about My Career Path.