Mentoring trends challenge individuals to develop and manage themselves and are becoming an integral part of productive performance and increased learning. It can help in career development, strategic planning, skills development, employment equity and building relationships and leadership potential.
What is mentoring?
Mentoring refers to a partnership between two people with the main aim of development. Usually, the mentor is an experienced individual who shares their knowledge and experiences, while giving advice to a less experienced person, i.e. the mentee. The relationship may be between two people from the same company, industry, or networking organisation.
The value of mentoring programmes
Mentoring programmes are generally focused on achieving a number of objectives for both the individual and the company. These objectives usually include the individual being able to perform specific tasks while their personal and career development needs are also taken into consideration. By means of mentoring programmes, employees get enabled to leverage some of their academic knowledge in the workplace and in addition, they will gain knowledge of an organisation’s culture.
Mentoring serves the purpose of conveying knowledge to inexperienced employees. The idea is to teach employees the core skills they will need to fulfil an efficient role in the workplace. Mentoring can enhance morale, motivation and productivity and reduce staff turnover and hence employers seek mentoring for performance enhancement rather than the correction of a performance issue.
Benefits of mentoring
There are benefits for both mentees and mentors; it is not only the mentee that gains valuable insight. By means of mentoring, both the mentor and mentee will learn to communicate more effectively, especially if they are from different backgrounds. New perspectives and ways of thinking are learnt. Both parties also get the opportunity to work on their leadership skills.
So, whether you’re on the giving or receiving end of a mentoring relationship, either way, it can benefit your career. Mentoring is essential to the work environment and companies should allocate appropriate funds to develop their staff, and as a consequence, their company.
This article is a general information sheet and should not be used or relied on as professional advice. No liability can be accepted for any errors or omissions nor for any loss or damage arising from reliance upon any information herein. Always contact your specialist adviser for specific and detailed advice. Errors and omissions excepted. (E&OE)