Notebook Mentor is your professional development career journal, guide & workbook. It’s the perfect tool for self-discovery and personal growth.


Read thought-provoking, expert content on topics of interest
Write using the space provided about your situation and professional development
Reflect on what’s going on for you, keeping things private or sharing with others
Process thoughts, feelings, and emotions
Act on your learning (if that’s right for you), using our bitesize development exercises


first-time manager concept image



In a nutshell

Becoming a 1st-time manager‘ focuses on helping you develop or refresh your skills managing people. Assess your journey into management, your management style and what it means to manage. Build your management knowledge across the employee lifecycle, and put this learning to practical use.

This is a great professional development journal for anyone who is new to management or who wants to think about their development as a manager. The art of managing is a full-time occupation. Don’t expect to have it all mastered all in one go!


What to expect

Chapter one

All our journals start with an introductory chapter to set the scene. This chapter answers some basic questions about what mentoring is and talks you through how Notebook Mentor is different to more formal face-to-face mentoring.

Chapter two

We give you the opportunity to reflect on any prior experiences you might have had with coaching and mentoring. It’s the time to consider any personal experiences that might help or hinder getting into professional development journaling, allowing you to at least acknowledge and perhaps park any negative feelings you have, and start afresh with a new approach.

Chapter three

It’s time for some warm-up exercises to help you tune into who you are. Here you can try answering questions about yourself and reflect on significant moments in your life that may have a bearing on your professional development, work, and career. Once you have completed this chapter, you should feel somewhat eased into the process of self-reflection and reflective writing.

Chapter four

Improve your knowledge, skills, and capabilities as a manager, by tackling the topics covered in your journal. Think about the topic in the context of your organisation and role. You may need to manage a redundancy process, but perhaps right now learning about how to hold a performance conversation is more important.

Chapter five

The final chapter of every notebook focuses on the desire (or not) to act based on your thoughts, feelings, reflections, and ideas. Consider any goals that might support your professional development on this topic and more generally. This chapter also encourages you to create a personal development plan (download your free personal development plan) and introduces how to use Mind Maps.

Don’t forget the 40 blank pages at the back of your Notebook Mentor. Take notes, make plans, dream or just doodle. Making time to be kind to yourself is one of the best development goals you can set!



How long should completing this Notebook Mentor take me?

We recommend you focus on a single topic at a time – for example, attracting, hiring, and inducting. Talk to colleagues and try the suggested exercises, additional reading, and journaling questions. If you are working alongside other new managers, why not establish a ‘learning set’ – getting together to share experiences, thoughts, and feelings. If you spend two to four weeks on each topic your journal would take a good 3-4 months to complete.

How should I manage my time when using this Notebook Mentor?

We suggest you spend a period in personal reflection on part 1 of chapter 4, before moving on to the other sections in your journal. Once you get into the detail, go where the need is. If you need to work on understanding budgets or reward, work on that section. Perhaps managing projects or change is more pressing. If so, start there. If you have no pressures, then go in chronological order if you prefer working that way.

What should I do if I’m finding a section difficult?

It’s okay to find certain sections challenging. If something feels like a struggle or is frustrating you, consider sharing your thoughts and feelings with your line manager, a family member or close work colleague. If that doesn’t help, look for role models you admire – what have they done when tackling similar things in their life. Alternatively, stop trying to get to the answer – distract yourself and unplug. The answer will surface when it’s ready to!

Are there any other resources I can utilise to help me when journaling?

To learn everything there is to know on the topic, read our blog, career FAQ and resources pages. You’ll find plenty of information there. You could also try listening to a relevant podcast or Ted Talk.

For more information on Notebook Mentor visit our website at www.notebookmentor.com


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