About academic navigation

About Academic Navigation


Academic Navigation for Women is a powerful means of building insight into your academic career options. We have blended the traditional approach to academic mentoring, heavy with advice from an experienced professor, with the insightful questions asked by the executive coach. Academic Navigation is an innovative approach to discovering career path options and moving forward with a positive plan for action. Furthermore the benefits of this approach are revealed in only three meetings between mentor and participant. Three powerful meeting that follow a soft structure to keep the conversation focused on the needs of the participant. Academic Navigation for Women connects women who work in academia and research with a global panel of women who understand the demands of working in higher education and research.

Our Panel of Mentors

The Envisage panel of mentors is a diverse group. This panel of mentors, the vast majority women, largely represent the diversity of the population of academic staff. Many cultures, backgrounds and disciplines are represented. All these mentors have a passion for helping other women. All have an academic background, while some are still in academia, others now work in business and Government while still others are retired after a career including senior roles in academia and research. Participants search the profiles that give some insight into the career journey of these fascinating women. Participants identify three from the panel they would be happy to have as a mentor. The chance of being matched with one of these preferences is high.   

Three Powerful Meetings

Three one-hour meetings, using Skype or similar technology is the foundational structure of the Academic Navigation process. The first meeting will focus on the crafting of a succinctly expressed goal and exploration of the ‘current reality’ relevant to that goal. The second meeting will be focused on options to consider in moving forward to ward the goal. The third meeting will focus on the preparation of a plan and commitment to action. 

Building Personal Insight

While traditional mentoring is often heavy on advice, executive coaching minimises advice and focuses on plausible actions identified by the participant. Academic Navigation learns from this. We understand that there is a place for sound advice from someone who understands the politics of your discipline. However we also believe that some advice, while well intentioned, may be given without an understanding of all the circumstances of the participant.

At a Glance Compare Academic Navigation with traditional mentoring in Academia

Traditional Mentoring in AcademiaAcademic Navigation
Limited access to senior women in some disciplines
Women mentors available across major disciplines
Access to a mentors often restricted to those on campus at your university
Global access to a mentors across institutions
Unstructured conversations with few defined outcomesA soft structure to the conversations ensures outcomes
Multiple meetings over 12 monthsThree meetings only
Relies on voluntary time spent by mentorsValues and pays mentors for their time


What Academic Navigation is not!

Academic Navigation is not Sponsorship or Protégé Mentoring where the mentor-coach uses their own contacts and expertise to assist in growing the career of the participant.

Academic Navigation is not counselling. It does not seek answers from the past. The focus of academic navigation is the future. Goals are set and options explored for moving forward.

Academic Navigation is not just a ‘coffee chat’. There is a structure and process that will assist the participant after the completion of the process.

There will also often be ‘homework’ for the participant to advance their thinking between sessions.