Do you want to improve your career and progress professionally in the year ahead? If yes, you must think about an under-utilized but highly effective tool for professional growth: mentoring. In January, which has been designated National Mentoring Month, now is the moment to think about the positive effects mentoring can bring to your career. No matter if you’re the one who mentors or teaches, the relationship between you and your mentor can propel your career up to new heights.
The advantages of mentoring are numerous. Studies have shown that effective mentoring can result in tremendous career success, including promotions, promotions, and more significant opportunities. Businesses that are committed to mentorship are rewarded with greater levels of engagement as well as retention as well as knowledge exchange. Indeed, mentoring has proven so effective that 71 percent of Fortune 500 companies offer mentoring programs to their employees.
While these figures are positive, it’s essential to know that mentoring isn’t a magic wand that instantly results in success. Effective coaching requires effort and the development of successful mentoring relationships requires specific skills, sensitivity, and a structured approach from both the mentor and the mentor. The success of a mentoring relationship is when both parties are accountable for the work. The optimal practices are put in place for three main ingredients:
- The Mentor
- The Mentee
- The Relationship
Summary of Mentoring:
A mentorship relationship is one in which one participant (the mentor) helps to support the growth, development, and advancement of another (the mentee). Mentors provide information, advice, and support in a manner that empowers the person being mentored.
How can you tell if you are a good coach?
Your approach to the process:
Are you able to keep your promises? e.g., show up for meetings on time, send out information in the manner stated, etc.
- Do you seem involved during the event? e.g., seem optimistic regarding the session, or do you seem disinterested and often cancel the session at the final minute, etc.
- Are you dedicated to your mentee’s progress, e.g., display an interest in the mentee and their issues, share your personal experience and knowledge, etc.?
- Do you provide information about your professional and personal life to aid in the development and progress of your mentee?
- Do you clearly understand the fundamentals of mentorship, e.g., inspire the mentee to take responsibility for their education?
- Do you pay attention to barriers and obstacles to help your mentor remove them?
The phases of the Mentoring Relationship
There are usually distinct phases to the mentoring relationship that are part of the traditional dyad mentorship model. Whatever the method, both the mentor and the mentee are accountable for recognizing the signs that the relationship between mentor and mentee isn’t working and are open to any changes, including the end of the relationship.
The course of the ongoing, four-stage mentoring relationship could span between a few months and several years. There is a natural transition between the stages before moving on to the next (with some overlap between the settings). The length of each step is contingent on the specific project, both parties ‘ experience levels, or the circumstances of the mentorship relationship.
Find a Mentor outside of Your Team
“A mentorship relationship needs to be in an environment of honesty and transparency to add value,” says Edwin de Lighter, an Abbott senior business excellence engineer in Weesp, Netherlands.
De Lighter was looking for an instructor after he applied for a leadership position on the site but wasn’t offered the job. Wieneke Bult-Muntinga oversaw the work he was using. She was the site director of established pharmaceuticals based in Weesp. Although de Lighter didn’t know her personally, he knew she had a reputation for being sincere and challenging. So, he approached her to get advice regarding his career plans.
A mentor who doesn’t have direct contact with you, like de Lighter, can result in a more friendly relationship as the mentor will remain neutral and provide a different viewpoint compared to those who work with you daily.
“At the end of the day, as a mentor, you’re not judging somebody on their performance. It’s safer to ask questions, to be uncertain, and to ask for help,” she explained.
Bult-Muntinga stated that although you can create that kind of effect with a manager, there’s always the fear of what if my boss sees this as a weakness.
Inquire for, and Accept the difficult feedback
Mentors can contact potential mentees, be it by inviting them to a chat over coffee or attending a networking event; however, the responsibility of maintaining the friendship lies entirely with the mentees—Plan recurring meetings at the most critical time suitable for your needs.
Although mentors can provide instant advice, the mentees must take the initiative to solicit feedback and think about the hard facts. For instance, when de Lighter didn’t land the post of site leader, The mentor told him the areas he needed to improve on by improving his presentation abilities and being aware of when to take a step back and be mindful of himself.
“I am known to have a somewhat ‘big’ personality,” he admitted in a statement, noting that self-reflection is necessary to benefit from the advice offered fully.
He suggests having a professional development plan prepared. If both mentors and mentees agree on both goals, they can make the most of the time they have.
Create Successful Mentoring Relationships with Mentoring Software
As we mentioned earlier that the most successful mentoring relationships are designed to be structured and quantifiable. For companies that are launching mentoring programs, the most efficient method is to use software for mentoring. MentorcliQ’s award-winning mentor software includes everything you require to create mentorship relationships that result in consistent and proven achievement.
Participants can create comprehensive profiles backed by Nobel award-winning algorithms for matching personalities.
Automate matchmaking based on the best fits, or determine the most effective match recommendations based on algorithms for individual mentor/mentee match-ups
Make as many mentoring programs as you require with any number of students you’d like.
Reduce turnover and increase retention to as high as 75% among mentor participants in the program.
Many organizations, such as Chase, Cigna, and The Clorox Company, have built and maintained programs with MentorcliQ’s mentor software. The companies that have programs built with MentorcliQ discover that it assists their participants in developing mentorship relationships that result in outcomes. This is why several companies, like Nielsen, KeyBank, and Bacardi, have received prizes for the mentorship programs they developed using the MentorcliQ software.
Please find out more about how MentorcliQ operates today and request a demonstration to discover why Fortune 500 and Fortune 1000 companies are using our software for mentoring to tackle one of their most complex problems with developing talent.