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Mentoring Connections Newsletter
March 2004

In this issue

Introduction

Welcome to The Growth Connection's first ezine newsletter !

This is intended to be a useful resource for you with web links, resources, case studies and sharing information from our own research and experience. The Growth Connection has designed and implemented 38 formal mentoring programs across Australia and the principal, Imogen Wareing is recognised nationally and internationally for her expertise in all aspects of mentoring.

We love to hear from you so requests for articles and tips, examples from your own experience and feedback will be very welcome.

Mentoring continues to consistently deliver a rich development and learning environment to the benefit of mentors, mentees and organisations.

The Growth Connection is committed to generating informed interest and action in mentoring of all kinds.

Mentoring Connections Network Meeting
Citibank Case Study

For anyone interested in mentoring.
The Growth Connection's first mentoring network meeting for 2004 will be held in our offices
Suite 2, (side door)
105 Mowbray Road
Willoughby, Sydney
6:00 - 8:00 pm, Tuesday, 30 March 2004.

Guest Speaker
John Eddy, Director, Human Resources, Citibank Australia
plus
A mentor/ee from the Citibank internal mentoring program.

Who for
HR, Learning and Development professionals and anyone interested in mentoring programs.

Working with Imogen Wareing, Citibank implemented a mentoring program in 1997 to support their two year Management Associates program for recent graduates' management development.
New mentors and mentees are trained for each program annually.
In 2003 there were two groups, including Chinese Citibank secondees from Shanghai developing their skills and careers in Australia.
John Eddy and mentoring participants will share their experiences of the program and plans for the future, as well as their external mentoring program for high potential employees.

Please contact The Growth Connection to book your place.
We provide this event as a service to the community and there is no charge. Email:iwareing@growconnect.com.au

Hot Topics

Graduate mentoring

Graduate programs are coming of age in Australia. The Australasian Association of Graduate Employers notes in an October 2003 report that employers are employing on average 10% more graduates, and as Margot Kropinski-Myers from the Department of Defence says "We want to grow our senior executives. Graduates are more expensive to employ, but we want them to be with us for the long haul." 1

Formal mentoring for graduates plays a key role in most successful graduate programs. It has been well documented that mentoring is a process which facilitates the elimination of role ambiguity/conflict, helps to reduce stress and assists the graduate to acquire new skills quickly2. The graduate is more effective earlier in their new role and mentoring is the single most significant factor in retaining graduates. The existence of a mentoring program also attracts the most talented of graduates, rating high on the list of what they look for in seeking employment.

The Growth Connection has had significant involvement with providing mentoring programs to graduates, providing specific services (training mentors and mentorees, evaluation of existing programs) as well as designing and implementing complete programs. Our work with both private and public sector organisations confirms that these new employees have significant contributions to make from the beginning of their careers, when they are supported and encouraged to do so.

The Project Manager who introduced mentoring into Citibank for their graduate recruits believes "Mentoring is a tremendous tool for companies adapting to major change being faced globally by corporations today". He found "It's one of the best, most cost effective and impactful ways you can develop someone. It is a strategic initiative because it not only passes on the values and culture of an organisation, it contributes to staff satisfaction and retention".

1From campus to corporation", (2003) Teresa Russell. Human Resources, 19/11/03, pp14--15. 2The socialization of high-potential graduates into the organization: Initial expectations, experiences and outcomes" (1997) Thomas N Garavan; Michael Morley. Journal of Managerial Psychology, 12,2; pp118 -- 137.

Technology and mentoring

Technology is becoming embedded everywhere in organisations ­ including mentoring relationships. In our program evaluations we are seeing anecdotal evidence that, in fact, many relationships are being maintained on-line and by telephone. Distance and shift-work are two factors in using technology but so is the tool that email itself has become in the workplace ­ even with a mentor in the same location.

Technology may offer many advantages to the mentoring relationship

  • it allows for easy, informal access to mentors
  • the potential for almost "real-time" responses that the mentoree can immediately use
  • and also mentors can give thoughtful, reasoned answers in their own time if that is what the topic and relationship requires.
However, there can be disadvantages. As Talmadge Guy1 points out, "mentoring is fundamentally human, interpersonal and value laden." It is a relationship. The personal support and understanding that so many value within their mentoring relationships may need to be first established in person before remote methods will work most effectively. There is also a greater chance of mis-communication ­ one can type and "hit send" before reviewing or reflecting on whether content, tone and context are appropriate. Confidentiality is another issue to consider when using email for sharing views and issues.

The Growth Connection is pioneering the steps towards self management of formal mentoring programs through the use of intranet sites and email, backed by training.

Technology is expanding the opportunities for mentoring ­ more people have the chance to be involved, and relationships have the potential to develop in new and different ways. If managed correctly and used consciously as the powerful tool that it is, technology (and especially email) can enrich and support mentoring outcomes in many contexts.

1Telementoring: Shaping mentoring relationships for the 21st century", Talmadge Guy, Critical Perspectives on Mentoring, Information Series Number 388.

Recommended Reading

Mentoring Executives and Directors
By David Clutterbuck and David Megginson

These British authors have gained the status of 'mentoring gurus' through their continuing and extensive research into mentoring relationships backed by the academic rigour from their University of Sheffield base.

This book examines the particular requirements for mentoring high level mentorees - executives and directors.

As all good resource books do, this book covers the 'how to' of mentoring this level of mentoree in the early pages.

The real value lies in the extensive case studies provided, based on structured interviews with directors and their mentors. Many examples of what works for the mentorees are covered. Both mentors and mentors illustrate varying models for worthwhile mentoring relationships.

There is no 'one size fits all' for mentoring at this level and this book is invaluable for informing the mentors in how to frame and conduct these relationships.

The Mentoring Pocket Book
By Geof Alred, Bob Garvey and Richard Smith

This book is just what it says - a pocket sized soft cover and one packed with dot point essentials with illustrations by Phil Hailstone. Readers, however, should not think this is a lightweight resource. It is both a beginners guide and a targeted reinforcement for experienced mentors and mentorees.

The key points for finding a mentor, benefits to be gained, phases of typical relationships, being a mentor, what to talk about and common questions answered are all included. Even summarised challenges faced by program co-ordinators are covered and blank pages for notes are provided at the back.

This is one for the briefcase and for the bookshelf.

Sites to visit

http://www.mentors.ca - A great Canadian resource that includes a document archive of reports, project summaries and background papers in addition to a comprehensive analysis of current issues. Mentoring organisations around the world are linked to this outstanding site.

http://www.mentoring-association.org ­ This is the website of the International Mentoring Association. It is packed with current and interesting mentoring information for every context, supporting the needs of both members and non-members. The IMA states that "Every member of the International Mentoring Association brings a diverse, unique experience and a fresh perspective from the various fields of mentoring that each represents. But all members share a common commitment to learning how to increase the effective use of mentoring through our work together."

Upcoming events around the world

Mentoring Connections National Conference 2004
March 4th ­ 6th 2004, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

… Discover how well respected corporations such as Bell Canada, Rogers Wireless, Ernst and Young and IBM are effectively using mentoring today to develop employee talent.
… Participate in workshops designed to "sharpen your mentoring tools" and assist in the design and implementation of effective programs
… Learn how to train program participants and evaluate your existing mentoring program to position it for long term success

The Many Dimensions of Mentoring
The 2004 Annual Conference of the International Mentoring Association
April 15th-17th ­2004, Tampa, Florida, United States.

More details about this event will be posted on the IMA website as they are available
http://www.mentoring-association.org

'Mentoring for Success' 2 day 'How to' Design and Implement Mentoring Programs Workshop April 22nd-23rd­2004, Singapore

Presented by Imogen Wareing, Principal of The Growth Connection, this workshop is for HR and Learning and Development professionals. It covers all aspects of designing, managing and measuring successful mentoring programs.

More details are shown on the Worklife Asia website http://www.worklifeasia.com


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