Mentoring: The Concept

Mentoring relationships foster a climate that encourages individuals to reach their fullest potential. By providing access to institutional and professional knowledge, mentoring relationships help to eliminate barriers to effective workplace performance and career success.

In mentoring relationships, mentors aid mentees with self-development and career management by helping them navigate various aspects of their organization, including*:

  1. Politics
  2. Norms, standards, values, ideology, history and heroes/heroines
  3. Skills and competencies necessary to advance to the next step
  4. The path to advancement and the blind alleys
  5. Acceptable methods for gaining visibility
  6. Characteristic stumbling-blocks and the personal failure patterns.

*Source: Adapted from Howard G. Adams, Ph.D. & Sheila K. Scott, Mentoring: The Fundamentals of Effective Mentoring

Through the relationship, the mentor is encouraged and rewarded by helping others and through knowing that he or she is making a difference in the profession and organization. The mentor is also distinguished for leadership contributions that sustain a mentoring culture in a supportive workplace environment that values learning and development.

Types of Mentoring

  1. Senior mentor/junior mentee
  2. Peer mentoring
  3. Reverse mentoring (junior mentor/senior mentee)
  4. Group mentoring
  5. Mentoring from a distance

How to Have a Successful Mentoring Relationships

  • Listen actively
  • Maintain confidentiality
  • Be respectful
  • Be realistic
  • Follow through
  • Be honest
  • Avoid misunderstandings

Mentors and mentees can avoid any complications in their relationship by clearly identifying boundaries, being clear about time constraints, giving the best times to be reached, preferred communication method and continually evaluate how well the purpose and goals of the mentoring relationship are being met.

Benefits of an Effective Workplace Mentoring Culture

A workplace environment that supports a mentoring culture realizes many benefits including:

  • increased vertical and horizontal organizational communication
  • greater awareness of organizational politics and culture
  • appreciation for and effective use of networking
  • increased development of inter-personal communication, leadership and self-management skills
Last modified: 03/22/2013 | or call S. Charles x4574