A Kansas City-based entrepreneurial mentoring program has announced its 2018 class. The Helzberg Entrepreneurial Mentoring Program was founded in 1995 by Barnett Helzberg Jr. and was originally inspired by Helzberg’s own 23-year mentoring relationship with Ewing Kauffman; the 2018 class includes 16 mentees.
HEMP is a three-year program that matches well-seasoned entrepreneurs with less-experienced entrepreneurial mentees. The goal? The mentor/mentee will build a close relationship, and in the process, the mentees will learn how to grow their business and become better leaders.
According to Bill Hartnett, president of the HEMP Board of Directors, the program works to develop strong relationships between the mentors and mentees rather than focusing on refining specific skills. “Personal interaction remains the foundation of the program and has become a powerful source of inspiration and success,” Hartnett said in a statement.
The 2018 mentees include:
Christina Dreiling, managing director of HEMP, said the program encourages economic development beyond even just Kansas City. “We are helping businesses and business owners grow, so we’re helping them to increase their revenue and increase their employee count,” Dreiling said. “While we’re helping the area, we’re not just focused on Kansas City. Some of the companies are even nationwide. We’re helping them to create more jobs, give back to the community and have better business leaders.”
To be eligible for HEMP, both mentees and mentors must fulfill certain qualifications and complete an application/interview process. Specific mentee requirements are listed here: