CIPR and Taylor Bennett Foundation Reverse Mentoring Scheme

In 2021, the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) and Taylor Bennett Foundation launched the PR industry’s first BME Reverse Mentoring Scheme. The scheme was designed to increase awareness of diversity challenges, the need for inclusive cultures and drive lasting change in the PR industry. 

The 10-month programme matched senior leaders with Black, Asian and ethnic minority PR and Communications professionals to share insights into what it is like to be a minority in the industry, to understand the challenges that are presented, to showcase the importance of allyship and inclusive cultures, and to encourage new ways of thinking in how their organisations approach all aspects of diversity, equity and inclusion.

Previous participants of the programme said:

“The programme offered the chance to explore nuances of ethnic minority backgrounds that I hadn’t previously considered. It also offered a safe space to ask questions and explore aspects of inclusion that informed my approach within the CIPR and my agency.” - Mentee

The most satisfying thing about the programme was learning, listening and building a candid relationship with someone who was patient and kind. We established a bubble of care and I never felt that any question was out of bounds.” - Mentee 

“Seeing actionable change was the most satisfying part of the programme and seeing my mentee make intentional decisions to shape how his business focuses on diversity and inclusion.”

 - Mentor

Both the CIPR and the Taylor Bennett Foundation are confident that the ten-month programme will:
  • Increase awareness of diversity, equity and inclusion challenges and the need for inclusive cultures and work environments in the PR & Communications industry
  • Help senior leaders / mentees gain an understanding of real-life experiences Black, Asian and ethnic minority PR professionals deal with and encourage them to implement new ways of thinking to innovate how their organisations approach all aspects of DE&I
  • Drive cultural awareness and build inclusive workplaces and cultures in the PR & Communications industry

Why take part as a mentor?

  • Sharpen your coaching & leadership skills
  • Expand your professional network by connecting with the wider cohort 
  • Accelerate your own career development 
  • Gain exposure to structured networking events, reflections and industry exposure

Previous participants have included:

Brands2Life, British Antarctic Survey, British Business Bank, Citizens Advice, Cowshed, Google, Hard Numbers, Harvard, Imperial College London, Launch, Meta, National Express, Netflix, Pinch Point Communications, Purpose Union, Stripe Communications, WPR, Zeno London, 

We ask that applicants meet the following criteria:


  • Five + years’ experience working in PR/Communications
  • Committed to investing time and effort to D&I initiatives and programmes
  • Willing to have open, non-judgmental conversations
  • Mentors should be from a Black, Asian and minority ethnic background
  • Mentors should be able to commit to the 10-month programme (monthly mentoring sessions) and in-person programme meeting dates 

Key Programme Dates: 

  • Application deadline: March 22nd 2024 (5.00pm)
  • Mentor & Mentee interviews: Week commencing March 18th & onwards 
  • Mentoring match outcomes: Week commencing April 15th & onwards
  • Programme launch: May 1st 2024 
  • Mentoring briefing session: Week commencing May 6th 2024 
  • Programme Closing: February 7th 2025 

Programme Events

  • Launch breakfast: May 1st 2024
  • Cohort check-in: October 1st 2024 
  • Christmas Networking: December 5th 
  • Programme closing event: February 6th 2025

Case studies from some of the participants of the 2021/2022 Diversity Reverse Mentoring Programme can be found on our blogs page here.

Interested in being a mentee? Please click HERE

How to apply

Applications for our 2024 programme are now open:

Mentor Applications: To apply as a mentor, please click HERE

If you would like an informal chat to discuss the programme, please get in touch with Gabrielle via [email protected]