FAQ

General


Program Implementation


Monitoring and Evaluation


General

Q: What is your mission?
A: The Wilhelm & Karl Maybach Foundation mentors unusually promising young leaders facing adversity to bring about positive change.


Q: What is your vision
A: Empowering the next generation of leaders today, so they can help resolve critical issues faced by humankind tomorrow.


Q: What are your general program goals?
A:
Based on our mission, our goals are two-fold:

Short-term: Provide mentorship, a tailored curriculum and resources to help develop protégés’ professional skill set and leadership potential.

Long-term: For the protégés to become leaders in their field, make a positive impact on the lives of others and become future mentors and give back.


Q: How do you define ‘leadership’?
A
: A good leader has the following qualities or traits:
  • Ability to inspire others
  • Effective communication skills
  • Excellent organizational and management skills
  • Desire and ability to role model
  • Commitment to ongoing self-reflection, the drive to learn from mistakes and constantly improve
  • Ability to network and strong collaboration skills
  • Altruistic and philanthropic nature
  • Determination to follow though in reaching a goal


Q: How do you define ‘positive change’?
A:
The ‘positive change’ we want our protégés to bring about must fall under one or more of the following categories*:
  • Alleviate poverty and hunger
  • Improve education for all
  • Support environmental sustainability
  • Eliminate discrimination
  • Improve global health (address HIV/AIDS and other infectious diseases, reduce childhood mortality, improve maternal health, foster universal access to healthcare, improve healthcare system)
  • Improve global economy (technological equality, fair trade, sustainable and stable growth)
  • Contribute to world peace (support cross-cultural understanding, mediate conflict and teach/model appreciation for differences)

*Inspired by the United Nations Millennium Development Goals.


Q: What is the scale on which you want program participants (protégés) to effect positive change?
A:
We want our protégés to make a significant difference. “Significant” in this context means:
  • Their work has an impact beyond their sector or field of expertise.
  • They strive to actively make a difference, and have a tangible and measurable positive impact (for example: found a school, give public presentations, write a book, train others, etc.)
  • The impact must be at least regional, but ideally, national or even global.
  • A significant number of people must substantially benefit from protégés’ activities on an ongoing basis. (The specific number used as a success indicator will be defined on a project-by-project basis).
  • Mentoring and inspiring others must be either a component of the project goals or be accomplished separately.
Q: How do you define ‘adversity’?
A
: Eligible protégé candidates are those who face any adversity that prevents them from developing their potential to its full extent. Candidates must be able to make a convincing case to qualify. Criteria for adversity include but are not limited to:
  • Residence in a developing country (not a member of the ‘elite’)
  • Minority
  • Economic disadvantage
  • Physical or other disability
  • Endurance of clear hardship


Program Implementation

Q: How do you go about reaching your program goals and fulfilling your mission?
A:
There are 4 major areas we focus on in order to achieve our goals and fulfill our mission:

Protégé Selection
– finding protégés who are both extremely talented and committed to effect positive change.

Project Concept – a) building a strong curriculum that not only focuses on protégés’ professional development but also emphasizes their leadership skill development and b) requiring protégés to set goals for themselves for the duration of the project and beyond, and to develop a detailed action plan with measurable milestones.

Exposure to Role Models – giving protégés the opportunity to experience and learn from successful professionals who are also agents of positive change.

Ongoing Monitoring and Evaluation – during and after the project to ensure protégés are on target with working towards the goals they set for themselves.


Q: How do you assess if protégé candidates are serious about wanting to make a difference?
A:
As part of the application process candidates are not only evaluated for their sector-specific professional skills and potential, but also for their leadership promise and commitment to create positive change. They are required to provide a convincing, detailed description of their specific vision and goals. They further have to have a track record showing their commitment to philanthropy and their capability to set and achieve goals.


Q: Once selected, how do protégés learn to create positive change while participating in a Foundation sponsored project?
A:
They are required to develop and execute a community service component to their project where they use their skills to benefit others. The purpose of this exercise is for protégés to:
  • Develop hands-on leadership skills
  • Gain confidence in their ability to effect positive change
  • Experience the thrill of making a difference

As part of this project component, protégés are required to participate in reflection activities that underline the importance of giving back


Q: Aside from requiring protégés to do include a community service component in their project, what else do you offer to develop protégés’ leadership skills and motivation to become positive change agents?
A:
The projects include two additional components to support leadership skill development:

Exposure to Role Models: This starts with selecting a mentor who is not only a skilled professional but who also has strong commitment and a track record of philanthropic work. In addition, we involve project advisors who also function as role models.

Tailored Leadership Trainings: The Foundation offers trainings that emphasize on developing a range of leadership skills such as effective communication, public speaking, cross-cultural competency, business and management skills, etc. Each protégé’s curriculum is being determined in cooperation with the mentor and tailored to address her/his individual needs.


Monitoring and Evaluation

Q: How does the Foundation monitor its projects and measure their success?
A:
Each protégé is required to write a detailed project proposal outlining specific goals and objectives as well as measurable benchmarks. The project proposal is reviewed and approved by the Foundation and the mentor. Over the course of a project, the assigned project manager will be in regular contact with protégé and mentor to ensure progress is being made and to address any problems. In addition, each project will undergo a mid-term review that will look closely both at the effectiveness of the project and how well the protégé/mentor pair is working together. At the end of each project, the assigned program manager will conduct a final project evaluation. The data for these evaluations is gathered via project manager feedback and reporting, and protégé/mentor pair surveys. Both quantitative and qualitative information is gathered to constitute “lessons learned” that can then be reintegrated into project practices and shared across the entire program. In addition to internal project evaluations, the Foundation is required to provide quarterly project progress reports to its board of directors.


Q: What happens if a protégé does not deliver on his/her project goals?
A
: If a protégé fails to make an effort to reach her/his project goals, s/he is considered to be in breach of the program agreement (which is signed at the onset of the project). The Foundation will take disciplinary steps to reinforce program boundaries and expectations, provide guidance, and encourage accountability. This process provides ample opportunity to correct any issue that may arise. The disciplinary procedure includes the following steps:
  • Warning
  • Probation
  • Dismissal

Q: How do you ensure that the protégés are in fact moving on to effect positive change after the project has ended – and not just focusing on their own professional success?
A:
By the end of the project, protégés are required to create a timeline for their project/s to effect change. Timelines must specify goals in 1, 5, and 10 year increments. Protégés must also articulate their lifetime goals, and define measurable benchmarks to show their progress. To ensure a long-term connection with our protégés, the Foundation is building an alumni program where protégés and mentors have the opportunity to keep the public and each other updated on their work through the Foundation website.


I’ve read through all the Q&As and I still have a question…
Please contact the Maybach Foundation at contact@maybach.org.