January is Mentoring Month and there is no better time to discuss the benefits of having a mentor. In recent years, mentoring has become more prevalent with most top organizations having a formal mentoring program. We often understand the benefits of mentoring to the organization in developing top talent, increasing engagement and employee retention but what does it mean to you as the participant?
Mentoring Fast Facts
71% of Fortune 500 companies offer mentoring to their employees.
75% of private sector executives reported that mentoring was instrumental “in helping them reach their current position.”
77% of companies with mentoring programs report improved employee retention and job performance.
80% of on-the-job learning is informal, taking place between mentors and those being mentored.
81% of millennials in a mentoring relationship report that they see themselves staying at least 5 years with their current company.
(Source: Robyn Grayless, "“Bottom Line Stats About Employee Mentoring Programs")
Mentoring is a great tool that can be critical to developing your leadership skills and take your career to the next level. It provides you with a trusted adviser to help you problem solve and see things from a different perspective. Within your organization, it can help you build relationships with top leaders that you may not have access to in your current role. Choosing a mentor outside your department can open up new opportunities and career paths within the company.
While having a mentor inside your organization is helpful, I encourage everyone to have more than one mentor including outside your organization. It will help you build a strong network of individuals with different backgrounds and experience while giving you a safe space to discuss office politics or challenges. This can be really helpful if you are looking to make a job change, negotiate a raise, or having issues with your boss.
"Having multiple mentors is like having your own personal board of directors to guide you as the CEO of your own life and career."
5 Key Benefits for the Mentee
Make a new connection and expand your network
Accelerate learning and development
Develop a new perspective on challenging situations
Increase confidence and leadership skills
Improve job satisfaction and effectiveness
We reviewed the benefits to the organization and the mentee. So what’s in it for the mentor? Mentors also get back as much as they give. Many mentors find that their leadership skills develop faster once they enter a mentoring relationship. It helps you to continue to hone your active listening and coaching skills while reminding you to lead by example. As a bonus, it can help raise your profile as a respected leader in your industry.
5 Key Benefits for the Mentor
Expand your leadership skills
Increase learning by teaching
Develop future company leaders
Re-energize your career
Create employee commitment, engagement, and retention
Bottom line is mentoring is worth the investment for all parties including the organization, the mentor, and the mentee. The benefits you receive can exceed the time you invest in your mentoring relationship. These can be life-long relationships that help the mentee find an advocate or sponsor that propels their career or allows the mentor to develop top talent to fill future positions. Mentoring matters, so I encourage everyone to find a mentor and be a mentor.
This article is the first installment of a monthly series on mentoring addressing topics like how to choose a mentor, how to make the most of your mentoring relationship, skills to be a great mentor, types of mentoring, plus the difference between mentoring and coaching. Let us know which topics are of most interest to you, and we will make sure to cover them.
“One of the greatest values of mentors is the ability to see ahead what others cannot see and to help them navigate a course to their destination.”