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Mentoring Connections Newsletter
In this issue
Carlie introduced a booklet she wrote called "Mentoring Made Easy - A Practical Guide for Managers." Other issues she talked about included visibility for women and EEO groups and that mentoring is one way to get them visibility. She also stressed the benefits of tying mentoring into a particular project to give focus, milestones and a structure.
Thank you to Jim and Carlie for their most informative presentations and for the opportunity of having attendees questions answered. Thank you also to those people who were able to attend this meeting. We will continue to have guest presenters at our network meetings in response to feedback that this is a valuable way to learn about mentoring and some of the challenges that face us in implementing a mentoring program.
If you would like a copy of ODEOPE's booklet please email us. firstname.lastname@example.org
How to Make Mentoring Work
Margo Murray is a leading researcher and practitioner with facilitated mentoring. Her bestseller book, 'Beyond The Myths and Magic of Mentoring' is a comprehensive publication on how to design and implement an effective mentoring process. It includes twenty years of research and client experience with her facilitated Mentoring Model. Her custom designed programs and published articles have won professional awards and White House recognition for excellence in the United States.
This workshop is for anyone with responsibility for performance improvement in their organisation - in management, human resources, planning and quality areas.
The workshop content includes:
The workshop dates are
The Importance of a Dedicated Program Co-ordinator
I am often asked if a specific program coordinator is necessary and if so, what their role should be. Our recent world wide research and our own experience in implementing mentoring programs demonstrate that committing a person to be accountable for the program administration is essential to its success. This is especially true of a pilot mentoring program.
If you have already changed your program coordinator your mentor program could be at risk. Issues of selection of the program coordinator, back up in case of absence, defining the role and allocating time need to be decided in the planning stages of your pilot program. When considering the time demands, a rule of thumb is to double the time you think it will require !
The role of the program coordinator will vary according to your program objectives and organisational culture but will usually cover
The time commitment is heaviest in the planning stages and first two months of the program. Once the mentors and mentorees have met two or three times the central managing role will reduce.
Selection of the program coordinator
Other selection criteria are
In some organisations, the level the program coordinator sits in the hierarchy is a consideration. Mentors are often at a senior level and need to be comfortable potentially sharing concerns about the mentoring relationships with the coordinator.
It is advisable to involve more than one person in the program coordinator's role to provide choice in who to contact and avoid being vulnerable to staff changes.
The program coordinator's role is highly visible throughout a pilot mentoring program and very rewarding for the individual when it succeeds. As having a mentoring program becomes part of the culture, the amount of coordination needed will lessen. However, some central administration and follow up will always be necessary to maintain momentum and ensure the organisation's and the participants needs are being met.
We can also provide access to a Mentoring/Coaching Skills Assessment (MCSA). The MCSA is an assessment and personalised feedback report designed to improve mentoring skills. This assessment includes a survey for the Mentor and three of their colleagues or mentorees to rate skills. The profile provides an objective assessment of the mentor by the colleagues/mentorees on nine skill areas and includes personalised tips to improve mentoring skills. It provides an effective link to ongoing staff development.
For more details, contact Imogen Wareing
We will aim to feature a mentoring case study in future issues of Making Mentoring Connections. In this issue we look at one of nine mentoring programs currently implemented at Education Queensland. Jan Alen has been involved in doing a great deal of work with women within Education Queensland. In this interview we cover one of their mentoring programs designed to develop women.
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How to Develop a Mentoring Program
Some form of spontaneous mentoring takes place in most organisations, whether it is acknowledged or not. A formalised program helps harness it to the organisation's objectives. Properly managed, the program can enhance the benefits to individuals from informal mentoring and minimise the problems that arise when the informal system bypasses talented employees.
Each organisation needs to design a mentoring program that fits its particular company culture and answers the needs of its own employees. To ensure the success of the mentoring program, a company must be prepared to be flexible in its approach and be willing to assess continuously and, if necessary, modify the methods it has implemented (1).
Principles of how to develop a program
A number of principles can determine the success of a mentoring program (2).
Assessment of needs
Mentoring programs rarely succeed when they stand alone. They must be seen as part of other human resources/management practices. Overseas experience places mentoring firmly within career development systems as an ongoing process. Other human resources policies within which mentoring needs to fit include recruitment, performance management, management development, workforce and succession planning.
Supervisors and managers whose staff will be mentored need special attention. They need to understand their role and how it compares and complements the mentor's role.
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