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How to run a successful mentoring programme
Offering a mentoring programme to your staff is a way to connect your business between levels, and offer advice and knowledge to professionals at any stage in their career. Offering your time and expertise to the junior members of your organisation shows that you are ready and willing to help them to progress through their career. It also gives you the opportunity to share your knowledge and skills, whilst building relationships across the business.
Implementing a mentoring programme at your company has a range of benefits. Ranging from better communication, boosting productivity, and improving office culture. Extending this olive branch of knowledge across your business can also have a positive impact on staff retention rates.
Over the past year, we’ve seen an influx of multinational companies relocate to Dublin, and setting up the right type of mentoring programmes for Irish workers and Irish businesses, will reap dividends. It can help drive business growth, for example, when navigating the complexities of Brexit.
Learn more about what you should consider when planning a new mentorship programme.
Pair the right professionals
It is crucial that you put professionals together that will both benefit from the programme. It isn’t beneficial to randomly pair your employees based purely on job role or level in the business. It is important that the people you are choosing as mentors are enthusiastic about the role, and are able to give time to their mentee.
Once you have discovered who is interested in joining the programme, it is important to get to know them professionally. Be sure to pair them with the professional that will be most beneficial. Consider their professional interest and knowledge gaps, with this in mind you will be best placed to pair them effectively. Considering these factors when pairing employees will make the programme more likely to succeed.
Outline the responsibilities
Second to pairing your staff, it is important to discuss, with both parties, what they each want to achieve from this union. This could be sharing knowledge and skills, career coaching, or learning about the wider business model. You should be clear about the end goal of the programme for each individual pairing, as this will push the mentorship in the desired direction.
It is important to define the role of a mentor in the business. A mentorship isn’t about taking over the management of the individual in any way. The relationship should be about receiving guidance and advice from one professional to another. Finally, the mentorship should have an agreed end date, to achieve goals and give the mentor a chance to meet with a new mentee in due course.
Allow the programme time to grow
Similar to most business developments, it takes time to see the true benefits of a mentoring programme. Professional relationships aren’t built in a day, and it is important to allow both parties to get to know each other on a professional level. Be sure to give your professionals and the mentorship time and space to grow. This will ultimately reduce pressure on the individuals, and allow them to get the most out of the programme.
Seek feedback from both parties
One of the key ways to improve your mentor programme moving forward is to ask for feedback from those involved. If there have been problems with the programme, or people aren’t meshing well professionally, it is important to recognise as it might direct the way you pair professionals in the future. Ask yourself what management could be doing to improve the efficiency of the programme as it progresses, this will only enhance the experience for future participants of the scheme. Seeking feedback throughout the duration of the relationship will also encourage both parties to get the most out of the mentorship.
A mentoring programme is a valuable tool for professionals throughout a variety of stages in their career. Utilising the findings of these relationships properly is a great way to improve your business culture and the development of your staff.
The Irish recruitment market is as competitive as ever, so it is important to ensure that you are offering both your current and potential employees the opportunity to grow and develop within your business. Mentoring is a great tool that can be utilised to upskill professionals at any level and is equally beneficial for the mentor as it is the mentee.
If you would like to explore how we can help with your recruitment processes and boost your employee value proposition in the market, browse our latest insights or get in touch with one of our expert consultants today.