Good mentoring schemes
Organisations should approach individuals and find out who is interested in becoming a mentor or mentee. Both are very different roles, with different expectations about what is required of them, so it’s important that individuals buy-in to that role.
Once you have an understanding of the talent available to be mentors, and those that want to be mentees, match them up accordingly. Mapping work has to be done here, to ensure that the skills a mentee wants to learn are truly possessed by the mentor, or indeed that the mentor has the skills to be able to share and impart their knowledge in the right way. Both parties will need support here, to ensure there is an agreement in place which highlights what they want to achieve from the relationship.
It’s best to have mentees and mentors working in different divisions of the business too, as a mentee may not feel confident bemoaning their boss, if it’s a direct report of the mentor for example. Mentees should feel confident being open and honest about the challenges they face at work, otherwise they won’t get the most from the relationship.
Mentees also need to be very clear about what it is they want to achieve from their mentoring sessions, such as learning how to budget effectively, setting clear agendas for each meeting in terms of regularity, length and goals. This makes sure that learning stays on track and time is spent wisely, and that outcomes can be measured properly.
There also needs to be a ‘no fault, get out option’, this means that if the mentoring relationship isn’t working for any reason, both parties can opt out without blame.