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The Association of Corporate Counsel (ACC) is the world's largest organization serving the professional and business interests of attorneys who practice in the legal departments of corporations, associations, nonprofits and other private-sector organizations around the globe.

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Learn more about our Mentoring Program.

  • Who decides who will be admitted into the program?

    All full members are eligible to participate in the Program. Dependent upon demand and appropriate matchings, it may not always be possible to accommodate all applicants and a wait list is maintained in these circumstances.

  • How are the mentors and mentees matched?

    The application form has been carefully developed to match mentees with the best possible mentor based on the ideal location, level of experience, specialities and professional development priorities. To ensure fair and neutral pairings are made, we engage an external consultant, Karina Butera, who specialises in mentoring program management and seeks to understand the specific needs and ideals of each mentee, to select the best possible match available. Karina has been managing the ACC Mentoring Program since 2014. She makes it a priority to get to know each mentor and understand their unique strengths and preferences as a mentor. Once Karina has completed matching, mentees and then mentors are notified and assuming there is no conflict of interest, the pair are introduced.

  • Do I have a choice about who I’m matched with?

    If the program facilitator has full confidence in the strength of the match, she will go ahead and make the connection. However, if there is more than one suitable mentor or if only some aspects of your request are able to be accommodated, she will make contact with you to discuss your needs and the options available. Our commitment is to program success for all participants, so we will not force matches that are not at least an 80% fit. Rather, we will recommend placing you onto the waiting list for the next program to ensure an appropriate match can be found.

    If there is a perceived conflict of interest in the match made, we will do our best to find you an alternative mentoring partner. However, unless there is a surplus of mentors available, it is unlikely we will be able to rematch you as this would mean swapping over another confirmed pairing (in many cases, several) and inconveniencing other program participants. If we are unable to find a suitable replacement, you may opt to be put onto the priority list for the next program.

  • Is there a cost to be involved in the program?

    There is no cost to participate in the program as a mentor. Mentees are charged an administrative fee of $195 which covers a portion of the costs associated with running the program.

    If you are participating in the program as both a mentor and mentee the administration fee is waived.

  • What is required of me?

    The time commitment is modest and typically involves eight to ten meetings over a nine-month period. Although the level of intensity is a decision for the mentor and mentee.

  • What is discussed during a typical mentoring session?

    The discussion is up to the mentee to decide. It may be regarding career pathways, dealing with difficult situations at work, upward management, developing a broader network or balancing workload with out of work commitments. The mentee should be aware that their mentor is not a counsellor and leave deeply personal problems out of the conversation.

  • Who should initiate the catch ups?

    It is the responsibility of the mentee to make the first contact with the mentor, and then to set times for future sessions. It is recommended to set meeting dates for the entire nine-months at the first session. Of course, these may need rescheduling at a later date, but by having them in your calendar you will be more likely to keep your commitment to the mentoring process.

  • What if I don’t feel comfortable with my mentee/mentor?

    It is likely that the first meeting with your mentee/mentor may be a little awkward or uncomfortable. If you are a mentor, take the lead and engage in an encouraging way to help alleviate any nervousness the mentee may be experiencing.

    It may be that your discomfort is because of a difference in personality style or perspective. This is actually a positive sign – being drawn out of your comfort zone is what mentoring is about! Your mentor may challenge you to try different approaches or accept understandings that go against the theories you’ve been taught. Likewise, your mentee may have new learnings and ideas that conflict with the ‘tried and true’ you have worked with in the past. The conflicting personalities or views provide a great opportunity to broaden your thinking and gain a different perspective.

    If you feel irretrievably dissatisfied with your mentoring partner, please contact the Mentoring Program Facilitator to discuss options. Unfortunately, we cannot necessarily switch your partner, but we will do the best to come to a positive outcome.

  • If my mentor doesn’t have experience in my industry, will the match be effective?

    Industry experience is not necessary to broaden your understanding. Further, there may be conflict of interest (for example, working in competitor organisations) to being mentored by someone in your own industry. Your mentor will have selected to be the best match based on your needs, experience and mentor availability.

  • What training is provided?

    Program participants will have access to the ACC Australia mentor and mentee training package. The training covers the history of mentoring, what it is and what it isn’t, the phases of the mentoring relationship, expectations and responsibilities, boundary management, how to mentor well, how to get the best out of the program and how to handle challenges in the relationship. The training is self-paced and should take approximately two hours to complete the mentee training and four hours to complete the mentor training. Completing the training will gain you two CPD points.

  • Do my mentoring sessions count towards CPD points?

    Because of the informal nature of mentoring, it is difficult to make a case for Continuing Professional Development (CPD) points. However, you may attempt to claim your mentoring if you are able to demonstrate that the structure and learning comply with prescribed guidelines. Please refer to the Law Institute’s Continuing Professional Development Rules (2008). There are detailed articles in the program’s resource library that will give you greater guidance regarding claiming CPD points for mentoring sessions.

  • Will my mentor assist me in finding a new job?

    The purpose of mentoring is to allow you to build your knowledge and skillset from someone with more experience. Your mentor may help you to identify gaps in your experience/skills to improve your chance of gaining a promotion or entry into another company/industry. They may also review your CV and provide suggestions. However, you must not expect them to seek out work for you in their own organisation or with contacts, and it would be inappropriate for you to ask them to assist you in the practicalities of job-hunting. They may suggest companies for you to approach; however, you are not to directly ask for introductions or for your mentor to circulate your CV for you.

  • What if I need to take a break from the program?

    It is expected, as part of your partnership agreement that you can commit to regular meetings over course of the program. If you are a mentor and are unavailable for more than a two-month period, we assume you would make extra time available for your mentee to ensure meaningful learning and results. If you are a mentee, whatever breaks you take throughout the program will be to your own professional development detriment. You cannot expect your mentor to take extra time if you have been out of contact without prior arrangement. When you develop your mentoring framework in your first session ensure you discuss your calendar and commitment to your role.

  • Will I get a certificate after completing the program?

    At present we do not have the resources to provide certificates. However, your mentor may (at their discretion) be prepared to write you a short reference confirming you have participated in the mentoring program. Clearly, they will be more inclined to write you a reference if they have found you to be willing, engaged and reliable throughout the program.

The next Future Leaders' Mentoring Program commences on 5 August 2019, applications will open on 13 May. To register your expression of interest, email the Program Facilitator, Karina Butera at

Apply As A Mentor Now


The Future Leaders Mentoring Program is proudly sponsored by Orbit Legal providing the legal resources you need, when you need them, without the expense when you don't.

ORBIT - A Corrs Group Business



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