Organisational Development


On these pages, you'll find practical information, resources and guidance related to mentoring and the staff mentoring programme.

Sussex has an active central mentoring programme open to all staff. The most common mentoring relationships are between a more experienced person (the mentor) and a less experienced person (the mentee). However, mentoring can also be a developmental relationship between peers.

MentorNet has now been launched to make staff mentoring here at Sussex easier and more meaningful than ever. Designed like a social networking site, MentorNet allows mentors and mentees to create a user profile. Mentees can search for and create meaningful matches with their Mentors - often selected from another School or Division and slightly ahead of the mentee in their career. There are options to allow for identity-based matching, which means that mentees share a specific characteristic with their mentors, as well as lived experiences in a range of areas.

Find out more about mentoring and how it works.

There are also a number of other mentoring schemes at the University including the Library mentoring scheme, early-career mentoring for researchers from the Research Staff Office, Sussex Alumni, as well as academic mentoring in schools (contact Schools directly for more information).

Cross-institution Mentoring

We have a reciprocal relationship with the University of Brighton with regards to mentoring. If you are a prospective mentor or mentee and would like to be matched with someone from Brighton, please specify this on your mentoring registration form and we will look to find you a suitable match.

Community of Practice for Mentors (CoP)

“A community of practice is a group of people who share a concern or passion for something they do, and learn how to do it better as they interact regularly.” Wenger-Trayner

What is the Community of Practice for Mentors?

The Community of Practice is open to all staff in an active mentoring relationship or waiting to be matched with a mentee.  If you haven’t been before, you are very welcome to attend. The CoP provides mentors with the opportunity to:

  • Share insights and best practice
  • Receive co-supervision from peers
  • Build mentoring capability
  • Practice and enhance knowledge.

What do existing mentors say about the Community of Practice?

“The training and community of practice has been invaluable in preparing me to become a mentor and continue to reflect on my role in the process.”

“Really good to have specific themes each time”.

“I think the most valuable thing about the community of practice is just the discussions that can come up in the group and sharing experiences.”

What happens at a CoP session?

Sessions begin with a check in around mentoring with peer sharing and advice. There is then a focus on a particular theme related to mentoring, with discussion and practice.

Example Agenda

  • Introductions and check-ins
  • Peer sharing – celebrating success, challenge and learning in our practice
  • Mentoring theme – knowledge share and practice
  • Check out and session close

The schedule is dynamic and open to change as the Community evolves. 

Guiding Principles

  • Confidentiality – Mentors will be mindful not to share any details which could allow mentees to be identified. Situations discussed will be anonymised and generalised where seeking support or suggestions from peers.
  • Mutual respect – the Community welcomes experienced and new mentors in an environment of mutual respect, sharing and support.
  • Encouragement – the intention behind interactions in the Community is to boost confidence, share suggestions useful to other mentors and build practical knowledge for members.
  • Involvement – the group is as active and as energised as its members. Suggestions for improving or evolving the group are welcomed. 

How can I book?

Upcoming sessions are listed on the Organisational Development > Mentoring pages and can be booked through via the Eventbrite links in the feature box. Sessions tend to run around 12-2pm.

Download the slides from previous Community of Practice sessions:

Who can I speak to if I have a question or want to know more?

Contact Sam Bates on or the Organisational Development team on


Contact us

Organisational Development
Human Resources
T 01273 606755 ext 4806

Follow the Organisational Development team on:

Viva Engage/Yammer

Looking for support from the OD team?

If you are a manager or leader and looking for support with learning and development for your team, complete this OD support request form to give details of the situation and expected outcomes, and a member of the OD team will respond within 5 working days.

How to sign up to the Staff Mentoring Programme

To join the Staff Mentoring Programme as either a mentor or mentee, please complete the relevant development session outlined below. Following this you will receive access to MentorNet,where you can set up a profile and begin matching. If you would like to discuss any aspect of the Mentoring Programme, please email

Training and Events

Organisational Development offer the following mentoring-related workshops and events on a rolling basis every term. Click on a workshop date below to register for an upcoming event.

Becoming a Mentee

Book via Eventbrite to select one of the following sessions to find out how the staff mentoring programme works at Sussex and the benefits of being a mentee:

Tuesday 10 October 2023 10:00 until 11:45

Tuesday 30 January 2024 10:00 until 11:45

Tuesday 30 March 2024 10:00 until 11:45

Effective Skills for Mentors

This workshop will explore the core skills involved in mentoring and practice an effective mentoring approach utilising an established model. Select one of the following sessions book.

Wednesday 11 October 2023 10:00 until 12:00

Wednesday 22 November 2023 10:00 until 12:00

Wednesday 17 January 2024 10:00 until 12:00

Community of Practice

Meet other mentors from across the University, share insights and experiences, and build capability through peer-to-peer development.

Thursday 19 October 2023 13:00 until 14:00

Thursday 8 February 2024 13:00 until 14:00

Case Studies

Read about the real experiences of colleagues in the Staff Mentoring Programme and their perspective on how mentoring has supported their professional development.