The previous two posts on mentoring briefly looked at the history, organizational impact and influence a mentor has on the success of a professional relationship. For an employee, mentee or protégé, it is a process of skill, competency identification and development. At the conclusion of the relationship it should yield and highlight the mastering of new skills. Mentoring however, goes beyond the realm of professional development. It is a powerful tool for networking opportunities, gaining exposure to different aspects of one’s organization and profession while increasing visibility.
Benefits to Protégé:
- Can increase self-confidence as they become familiar with a new role, increased responsibilities, or a new organizational culture
- Challenges them to go further, take risks, set new goals, and achieve at a higher personal and/or professional standards
- Provides a opportunity to discuss professional issues and seek and receive advice on how to balance new responsibilities
- Promotes networking and visibility
- Provides role model for professional leadership
- Helps development of competencies and stronger interpersonal skills
- Demonstrates commitment to personal and professional growth
As an HR professional and as an employee I have been a witness to how mentoring is an invaluable asset promoting growth during my career. I have been blessed by highly skilled, knowledgeable and willing mentors both within my academic experiences, workplaces and peers. Mentoring is not only a process where senior executives and company owners contribute to the growth of an employee – it is both a formal and informal process that shapes the successes of all individuals.
Mentoring is a brain to pick, an ear to listen, and a push in the right direction. – John Crosby
I have reached out to teachers, bosses, co-workers, subordinates, association members and friends in order to help capitalize on the vast amount of knowledge they possess. Understanding that those around you can offer constructive criticism only broadens your learning experiences beyond one field, aspect or category. Mentoring can also allow you to learn from experiences of others and avoid costly pitfalls, while teaching you how to tailor your own style into various situations.