Mentoring

Fiona MacKenzie

Covid-19 changed the travel industry overnight, lurching dramatically from being mainly an office-based team working environment to working from home (WFH) or anywhere (WFA). This sudden change in working conditions has brought isolation for some and may ultimately have a negative impact on employee mental well-being and productivity. Now more than ever, as we continue to adjust to whatever lies ahead, mentoring is crucial.

Some benefits that mentoring delivers to a business are:

  • staff development – employees being mentored will develop both in a professional and personal capacity
  • business insight – broaden insight into your business
  • productivity and performance – increase productivity and improve the individual’s performance
  • staff retention – help to engage employees, which should lead to better retention levels and lower staff turnover
  • knowledge sharing – give the mentor a sense of responsibility and the satisfaction of passing on their knowledge
  • stronger relationships – build relationships between employees by encouraging the exchange of information and experience

Benefits of mentoring to the individual (mentee):

  • integration – helping the individual integrate more effectively within the organisation
  • confidence – increase the individual’s confidence
  • business awareness – gives the mentee a stronger awareness of the culture and objectives of the business
  • identify strengths and weaknesses – allow the mentee to acknowledge their strengths and weaknesses, which can in turn lead to faster learning and personal development

When done properly, the power of mentorship is clear: people with mentors perform better, advance in their careers faster and even experience more work-life satisfaction. There is also a mutual benefit, as the mentor seizes the opportunity to ‘reflect’ upon themselves and their career. The “feel good factor” for both mentor and mentee should be obvious. Both parties, through their cultivated relationship, have the opportunity to share experiences, which also enables them to keep their own and the other’s wellbeing in focus.

Reverse Mentoring

Reverse mentoring is fast becoming the key to a highly inclusive workforce and recently increased millennial retention in an organisation by 96%, from two years to three. Reverse mentoring is hugely beneficial for junior members of the workforce to mentor the older members with tech advancements and new ways of working, whilst the older members can share their skills and experience – it really can deliver brilliant results for the mentee, mentor and employer.

An overview of what is required:

Make sure everyone’s on board: From senior management to the front line, everyone in your company should be convinced of the value of mentoring for it to work. By working with people from different departments and levels, everyone will benefit from either gaining the skills they need to move up or gaining knowledge, which will help them to develop their skills. 

Map out a framework: It’s important to set the parameters of the program before you even begin. Once you have the buy-in from senior management, take some time to figure out the nitty-gritty, i.e. what are the program’s goals, and how are you going to measure success?

Provide training: Training is vital for mentors so that they can deliver a true mentorship relationship. Equally, training should be given to the mentee to manage expectations and ensure complete understanding of the mentorship process, purpose and goals.

Ensure valuable pairing of mentors and mentees: Match partners based on what they want to learn, their interests and where they want to go in their careers. The quality of the match will determine quality of outcomes and help increase satisfaction and overall success of the program.

Monitor and manage: It’s important to monitor how the program is going. Establish check-in points to identify participants who have not yet communicated or are lacking engagement and find out why.

Don’t force it: Life happens. If the situation of a mentor or mentee changes (available time, personal issues etc.), feel free to remove them from the program and re-match the other user.

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Sirius Talent Solutions can provide your organisation with a tailormade Staff and Management Mentoring programme. For further details, call (01932 562007) or email:  [email protected]