TrustMeAims and Objectives

The TRUST ME Business Mentor Skills Development Programme is aimed at those individuals who believe in and support SME owners and CEO’s to grasp business opportunities, solve problems and grow their business using both consulting skills and mentoring skills in order to be effective and provide real added value.
It was built on evidence based consulting models, business concepts, and techniques, collected through a successful collaboration within an international partnership lead by Budapest Business School (BBS). The practical research was performed by 3 higher education institutions (BBS, Babes-Bolyai University and Lahti University of Applied Sciences), completed by the insights and understandings offered by a professional association (Business Hungary) and two consulting companies (ADINVEST International and CDM).

1. Why bother about SME Mentoring?
2. How it works?
  2.1 Active learning
  2.2 Delivery
  2.3 The criteria of the certification / requirements from the training participants
3. What’s in it for me?
4. Business mentor community
5. TrustMe Partners?

Why bother about SME Mentoring?

The market economy has been (re-)discovered relatively recently, with a booming of enterprises and business managerial experience which now requires stronger support and consolidation processes.

New models of doing business are required for SME’s - the same is true for consultants, who need new methods of learning, working, competences and supporting structures – that’s why the TRUST ME project acts on two major dimensions:

  • At individual level – competence development
  • At structural level
    • Creating a new profession, the Business mentor one,
    • Create new networks for entrepreneurs and professionals.

How It Works?

Active learning

The Business Mentor Skills Development Programme is delivered through a mix of modern applied methods, during intense, but flexible three weeks of
Active learning - a mixed and rich variety of learning methods, under participants’ control

  • Experiential learning activities
  • Group work
  • Role plays
  • Business simulations
  • Interactive presentation of business models and concepts.

In order to facilitate learning and to increase the flexibility, the development programme offers a variety of learning methods like:

  • E-learning (on-line)
    • Based on a friendly interface
    • Flexibility to choose
      • Self-assessment of skills
      • Personal development at own pace.
  • 3 days face-to-face training
    • classroom immersion in client interactions and role plays
    • experienced facilitators
    • guest speakers – entrepreneurs that share their needs first hand
    • valuable practice through role-plays
    • understand (discuss, role-play etc.) different stages in the difficult client – business mentor relationship.
  • Business simulations – face-to-face group learning, follow by on-line individual and group sessions.
  • Individual learning – including reflective practice.
  • Group learning – in an action learning group.
  • Access to local (e.g. SME owners) and international experts (e.g. professional mentors). 

More info is available about the outputs and deliverables by TrustMe


The criteria of the certification / requirements from the training participants
  1. Participation on all the 3 (face-to-face) days programme
  2. Watching the e-learning materials and playing 3 rounds with the Global Challenge simulation game)
  3. Completion of the self-assessment at the beginning and at the end of the training and the peer assessment with 2 other training participants
  4. Working on their own reflective journal (learning diary)
  5. Completion of at least 6 of the 9 e-learning module evaluation questionnaires
  6. Completion of the final training evaluation questionnaire
  7. Justification of at least 1 SME owner contact occasion. 


What’s in it for me? 

  • Be the first on the market in this new profession
  • Get one month intensive blended learning
    • Understand mentoring process / Being a better mentor
    • Improve own management style
    • Become familiar with new knowledge
      • e.g. a map of BM competencies
      • Understand SME needs and perspectives
    • Enjoy on-line flexibility of study
    • Learn with other people like you in face – to – face learning and sharing & discovery process. 

Business mentor community

Some of those who successfully complete the BMS will be invited to join the business mentor community that will function as a:

  1. Social Network - Helping business mentors and business angels to connect and increase ease of sharing information
  2. Community of practice (alignment network) - Facilitating people to explore potential shared identity and value propositions, while work together to develop and impose business and ethic standards for the new profession
  3. Productivity Network - Helping Business mentors to work together in consultancy assignments and implement collaborative action.

TrustMe Partners

A multi-actors partnership has been established with 3 higher education institutions and 3 non university partners. Two of the universities are from the newest Member states (HU and RO) where market economy has been (re-)discovered relatively recently with a booming of enterprises and business managerial experience which now requires stronger support and consolidation processes.

These Hungarian (BBS - Budapest Business School) and Romanian partners have extended research work around topics touching upon SME issues, but they have no or very little experience in how to help SMEs directly with advanced or effective Mentoring. These partners certainly needs support to reinforce and adapt training solutions facilitating the mentoring and support of SMEs in sustainable way. Both are experienced in European projects, their initiation and management as well.

The third university, LAMK (FI), has a rich experience in research and curriculum development in entrepreneurial issues. This university is considered as an innovation resource, but it is also  interested in the joint development of new curricula around mentoring issues.

One of the non-university partners is a French multi-entrepreneurs company (ADINVEST International) which operates a network of mentors who work in the field and help SMEs on different kinds of problems. ADINVEST International accepted to share its experience with the partners of the project and also to develop its experience, practical and theoretical, into training materials about mentoring approaches. Therefore, this partner is an important source of innovation for the project. ADINVEST Intl staff members also have a rich experience in different kinds of European projects and, in particular, in quality assurance (QA) and monitoring issues. ADINVEST Intl will take in charge these QA activities on the project.

The remaining two partners are Hungarian and Romanian SME federations/associations having experience in curriculum development for enterprises as well as piloting the new courses and disseminating and exploiting results within their members.

Most of the partners have long standing cooperation with the coordinator Budapest Business School, and others have long established personal contacts on research or educational projects. Most partners have been involved several times in transnational cooperation projects.
 – see the list of the project partners.