The magic of mentoring

career development
The magic of mentoring in engaging and developing the potential of individuals is evident daily, and the statistics back this up.

More than 70% of Fortune 500 and private companies use mentoring to attract, develop and retain talent as well as boosting productivity.

Research by the Association for Talent Development (formerly the Amecian Society for Training and Development (ASTD)), discovered that managerial productivity increased by 88% when mentoring was involved in staff development, compared with an increase of just 24% with training alone.

We asked our Graduate Network for their top tips for those graduating this summer and many said that finding a mentor was key-

"Find a mentor. Navigating your career is tricky, and having a mentor who understands your ambitions and plans will make it so much easier. The College now has a platform for mentoring - make use of your colleagues' experiences, networks and knowledge.”

“Don’t underestimate the importance of finding a mentor. Someone you can trust and relate to, they don’t have to be local either! I’ve had a fab mentor since I graduated and we are over 200 miles apart. We’ve developed a good friendship over this time and can’t wait to finally get together at the next conference!”

What is a mentor?

A mentor is a person who guides a less experienced person, building trust and encouraging positive behaviours. The best mentors have patience, empathy and an eagerness to share their wealth of accumulated knowledge and experience.

Mentoring is mutually beneficial

Mentoring schemes can be extremely effective in helping individuals to improve their skill set - both for mentors and mentees - as both parties will experience personal development through their involvement in the mentoring relationship. In the case of the mentee, they will, amongst other things, learn from someone with either more or different experience to their own. Mentors will have an opportunity to hone their leadership skills, learn new approaches and see different perspectives and challenges.

Mentors don’t necessarily have to be older or higher up the career ladder. In recent times reverse mentoring has become increasingly relevant as seasoned professionals turn to younger professionals to gain new views on the world of work from the perspective of a new generation. Younger mentors can also pass on their knowledge about using new technologies and social media etc. In an ever-evolving world, it is important to continue our learning and understanding whatever level we are in our career.

Peer to peer mentoring is another area that has become increasingly popular. The pandemic period has thrown up lots of challenges that have been completely new to all of us and peer to peer mentoring has proven to be a real benefit in terms of enabling professionals who are facing specific challenges to work together on these issues and to provide mutual support. It’s a refreshing and revealing way to exchange ideas and knowledge.

The many benefits of mentoring for both the mentor and the mentee include increased confidence, motivation, innovation, productivity, collaboration, recognition, appreciation, engagement and fulfilment.

Mentoring also encourages goal-setting which is important in helping work performance, yet for many professionals, goal-setting discussions in the workplace just never happen.

So, if you think you could benefit from either becoming a mentor or a mentee why not take a look at our mentoring programme.