Mentoring is an empowerment and development tool that is used to encourage people to optimize their potential, develop their skills, and to improve their performance. There are different models of mentoring. Examples of models include; One-On-One mentoring, Resource-Based mentoring, Group mentoring and Training-Based mentoring.
This is the most widely used mentoring model. It involves a mentor, the person doing the mentoring and a mentored, the person to whom the services of mentoring is offered. This type of mentoring model involves a one on one interaction between the two, therefore, creating a rapport between them.
This model requires the mentor to work with a group of 4-6 people at a time. The group’s meeting are scheduled by the mentor and the mentored. This scheduling of meeting is its limitation because of difficulty in scheduling regular meeting. It also does not provide the preferred relationship in mentoring.
Training-Based mentoring is tied to a training program. The mentored is assigned a mentor to help in developing particular skills taught in the program. The main focus of this model is the subject at hand.
As a program, mentoring has relative merits and demerits. The relative merits are possibly the advantages that can be benefited from the mentoring program. Mentoring not only benefits the person being mentored but also the mentor; it is a two way process.
As a result of mentorship, the mentored person enjoys the benefit of learning and developing new skills. The experience enable them to comprehend the expectation of the system, to be more prepared to take up whatever role they are assigned, and thus competently perform their duty. The skills boost cost effectiveness in the organisation they work in. Mentors also feel a sense of fulfilment in helping others become better people by sharing out their knowledge and developing a close relationship with the mentored. They also enjoy a fulfilling sense of being indispensable and of being professionally recognized.
Depending on various factors, there are times when mentorship is a suitable method or is not a suitable method of intervention. For example the following situations can call for mentorship, talent shortages, fast growing businesses, job role change, developing skills of technical experts, support for senior executives and organisational change among others.
Support for senior executives
Executives being ushered for leadership roles may be reluctant to go for training courses because they may feel they already have the skills. Mentoring can be a suitable method in this kind of situation because it is confidential and a strategic development option where an objective is used by an individual
Mentoring can help individual adjust to times of major organisational change e.g. change in management. These periods can be received by changing in the attitudes and behaviours of some workers. To fit in the current cultures, the employees need to be mentored.
When introducing mentoring to a work place, there are key factors to be considered:
- The main purpose of mentoring-An organisation needs to clearly state out why they have to introduce the program and its main purpose.
- Is the program an open one or is it scheduled for a specific group- this will help in scheduling the meetings and above all bringing the most suitable mentor
The role of a mentor in the mentorship relationship
- Motivating – a mentor should motivate the mentee to bring out the best in them by exploiting their potential.
- Empowering – a mentor should be able to empower a mentee by making them feel respected, liked and valued.
- Navigating – mentors should be wise guides by making the mentees make more discoveries about themselves and believing in their abilities
- Open minded – mentors should accept their clients as they are: they should not be judgemental and consider their points of view
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Cox, R. (2012). The Role of a Mentor. Retrieved September 17, 2013, from Yes: http://www.yess.co.nz/MentorsRoleandQualities.html
Management Mentors. (2012 ). Business Mentoring Matters . Retrieved September 17, 2013, from Management Mentors: http://www.management-mentors.com/about/corporate-mentoring-matters-blog/bid/30129/Different-Types-Of-Business-Mentoring-Models
MentorSet. (2008). What is Mentoring? Retrieved September 17, 2013, from MentorSet: http://www.mentorset.org.uk/pages/mentoring.htm