Events & Training

Whether junior designer or design leader, account handler or MD everyone benefits from fresh perspective, knowledge-share, new insights and debate.

Our events and training courses are renowned within the industry for their quality, relevance and proven capability to boost the confidence and performance of individuals and teams.

From lively networking events to skills development workshops, from in-depth business growth programmes to stimulating round-tables, our extensive range of events and training has something to offer every member of your team, across all roles and levels within your business.

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Twenty/Twenty Mentoring

Since its launch in 2011, the DBA’s flagship business mentoring programme Twenty/Twenty has worked with more than 400 participants from more than 250 DBA member businesses. As we move into our 11th cohort, the DBA would like to thank all of our past and current mentors and mentees for being part of our mission to tap into the wisdom and vision of the current leaders in the design industry, and inspire the next generation to make more informed decisions about their businesses, their people and themselves.

DBA Twenty/Twenty pairs rising industry leaders with established design pioneers for a 12-month one-to-one mentoring relationship. Read on to find out how you can be part of this established and successful programme.

We are currently open to applications from:

  • Mentors who want to contribute to the success of our future industry leaders, and
  • Mentees looking for an experienced sounding board and support on your journey upwards.

What is the programme all about?

  • Designed specifically for individuals who want to take their thinking around business issues to the next level.
  • Aimed at helping rising industry leaders define their goals and grow their business. 
  • A process which helps you to make better-informed decisions about your business, your team and yourself.

Who are the mentors?

The calibre of mentors involved in the programme is unrivalled in the design industry and our in-depth matching process ensures we match you with a mentor who fits your specific needs. Utilising the wisdom and vision within the DBA’s membership, our mentors are the people who have years under their belt running the inspiring businesses we all secretly admire.

MD/Owners and Directors from DBA member businesses like:

  • Coley Porter Bell
  • Dalziel & Pow
  • Dragon Rouge
  • Elmwood
  • ELSE
  • Good
  • Landor
  • Pearlfisher

So how does the programme take you from good…to great?

Twenty/Twenty will provide you with a highly experienced design industry confidant. Someone you can discuss both the day to day and the bigger picture with. As you work through the programme with them, they will help you to develop your thinking, increase your confidence and hone your ability to reach your own conclusions on the steps that are right for you and your business.

 

Become a mentee

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Who can apply?

  • MDs, owners and partners of small and medium design agencies, senior team members from medium to large sized agencies, as well as in-house design team members. The programme is open to DBA members and non-members.

What you get?

  • One-to-one, face-to-face mentoring from a design industry expert over a 12 month period, with a minimum of nine meetings recommended.
  • Training in key skills needed for successful mentoring relationships at key points throughout the year.
  • Continuous support from the DBA team as well as clear, constructive and tailored guidance and resources.

How to apply

  • Applications for 2021 are now open. The deadline for all applications is Friday 4 December at 5pm.
  • Complete a mentee application form to be considered for the programme. 
  • Standard fee £2,999+vat
  • DBA members £1,750+vat

Here’s what others had to say

Richard Taylor, Managing Director at Brandon Consulting talks about his experience of being a mentee.

Read more about the transformational impact of mentoring from Andy Gray, Founder and Managing Director of StudioLR, in our latest Twenty/Twenty case study.

Become a mentor

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As a DBA mentor you will support an aspiring industry leader as they move themselves and their business from good to great. Your role will be to help them expand their ability to answer their own burning questions and support them to create a framework by which they can make fundamental decisions to drive their business forwards.

Give something back and nourish the growing talent in the industry. You’ll be able to take the skills you learn as a mentor back into your own business and make a significant difference to the development of your mentee in a relatively brief space of time.

What’s the commitment?

  • Volunteer your time – a minimum of nine meetings of around an hour with your mentee over 12 months.
  • Full development along with your mentee and other mentors at key points throughout the year.
  • Continuous support from the DBA team as well as clear, constructive and tailored guidance and resources.

How to apply

  • Applications for 2021 are now open. The deadline for all applications is Friday 4 December at 5pm.
  • Complete a mentor application form to be considered for the programme.

Here’s what others had to say

“You’ve got to look at being a mentor or a mentee as an opportunity – you should grasp it while you can and no one else does it the way the DBA does. It’s a pretty low investment as a mentor with very high developmental benefits and reward.” – Jonny Westcar, Managing Director at Stormbrands.

Read more about how Jonny’s experience as a mentor presented unexpected curveballs and surprising benefits here.

Get in touch

If you have any questions about the mentoring programme, please contact Natasha Papa, Head of Programmes at natasha@dba.org.uk.

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Top 5 reasons to have a design industry mentor, in the words of our mentees.

  1. Take time to focus on the business.
    “You spend so much time thinking about how to please your clients, and not nearly enough time focusing on the business itself. My mentor was able to put everything into perspective – being reflective yet forward focused at the same time.” 
  2. Be guided by someone more experienced.
    “Finding someone with such a wealth of experience from the design industry who can give an objective viewpoint on you and your business is invaluable.” 
  3. Define your goals.
    “The route to finding my goals was nothing like I expected. It involved being asked challenging questions and my mentor helping me to find the answers for myself.” 
  4. Get energised.
    “I’m back to being excited about my business. I felt the wind had gone out of my sails but since having a mentor I feel happier, richer, invigorated, more confident and more focused.” 
  5. Take your thinking to the next level and grow your business.
    “We’ve seen massive growth in the last 12 months: doubled our staff, implemented new systems and moved to a new office. Part of that was made possible by the tools I picked up from mentoring, and part from the sounding board of experience.”

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