HappyValley Connect matches new innovators with expert mentors

July 22, 2020

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Every good hero needs a guide. Just ask Frodo Baggins, who navigated Middle Earth with Gandalf the Grey’s help. Or Luke Skywalker, who leaned on both Yoda and Obi-Wan Kenobi to discover his destiny and save a galaxy. And without Mr. Miyagi, the Karate Kid would have just been… a kid. (Side note - Did you see any female mentors in there? We didn’t either. Let’s change that.)

With their trusted mentors guiding them, these protagonists were able to face monsters, navigate tricky situations, and grow into the heroes they were meant to be. 

Real-life innovators need mentors just as much as Frodo ever did, especially with today’s corporate upheaval and pandemic landscape. After all, being mentored has so many advantages.

Studies show that good mentoring can lead to greater career success that includes promotions, raises, and increased opportunities. Organizations that utilize mentoring see higher employee engagement, retention, and knowledge sharing. Mentoring shows such a tangible ROI that 71% of Fortune 500 companies offer mentoring programs to their employees.  

So where’s the best place to find a mentor today – someone who has been where you have been and can help you on your journey? Glad you asked. 

HappyValley Connect: A Startup Mentoring Platform

The top talent within the HappyValley Industry community –  professors, inventors, CEOs – are in the perfect position to guide other innovators, and they can do that with HappyValley Connect. HappyValley Connect is an online platform that pairs startup innovators with experienced mentors in order to help them along in their entrepreneurship journey. This new tool was developed by Protopia, a leading provider of AI-powered, virtual community engagement platforms.

How Does HappyValley Connect Work?

The top talent within the HappyValley Industry community –  professors, inventors, CEOs – are in the perfect position to guide other innovators, and they can do that with HappyValley Connect. HappyValley Connect is an online platform that pairs startup innovators with experienced mentors in order to help them along in their entrepreneurship journey. This new tool was developed by Protopia, a leading provider of AI-powered, virtual community engagement platforms.

How Can I Get Involved?

For mentees, it’s as easy as asking a question. Start here to fill out the question form and then ask away! Recent questions include things like “How do I know if I qualify for PPP funding?” and “How should I structure a pilot/beta agreement?"

For mentors, it’s even easier. You can start giving back by filling out the mentor form here. Or, if it’s more convenient, you can send your LinkedIn profile to hvconnect@happyvalleyindustry.com and it can be converted into your HappyValley connect mentor profile. Then just wait for a question to arrive in your inbox!

What's the Time Commitment?

Time is a precious commodity, no matter where you are in your career path. HappyValley Connect’s software makes a precision match quickly, and then the question can be answered in a single email, in a Zoom call, or even in a face-to-face meetup.

As a mentee, your connection with your mentor can range from just the answer to a quick question to extended career guidance – it’s up to you. Find more tips on mentoring success here.

As a mentor, you can even adjust the frequency with which you receive questions to suit your personal preference. Plus, if you receive a question you don’t have the time to answer at the moment, you can always pass and answer the next one.

What Do I Get Out of It?

For mentees, it’s all about the benefits. Research shows that mentored professionals are five times more likely to be promoted. Beyond promotion, there are tangibles like networking, progression, feedback, and personal development. In other words, there’s a reason that most good hero stories feature a guide. 

For mentors, it comes down to giving back. You get the satisfaction of seeing someone else develop and succeed in your field. This is particularly potent in Happy Valley and Penn State –  knowing you’ve had a part in the success of a fellow Happy Valley Industry 4.0 innovator is priceless.

Live, Work, Play…Happy Valley!

Happy Valley Industry is the voice for innovation, research and industry in the Happy Valley region of Central Pennsylvania.

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