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Articles     by The The Growth Connection
© Copyright The Growth Connection Pty. Ltd. 1999-2012


Case Study - Office of State Revenue

In this article we look at one of the mentoring programs currently implemented at the Office of State Revenue. We spoke to Dianne Barden who is the Director of the Planning, Review Division.

When did your mentoring program commence ?
In August 1995.

What are the objectives of your mentoring program ?
To enhance the career prospects of OSR staff; to develop staff to become managers; to encourage and assist staff to gain the skills necessary for promotion; to develop otherwise unseen potential within the organisation; and to assist new managers and staff in development opportunities to gain skills.

How are mentors selected ?
Mentors are selected by their mentoree. Guidelines are given e.g. someone from whom you can learn, who is about 2 levels higher in the organisation, and not in your work area.

Do you have a program coordinator(s) ?
There is a steering committee for the pilot and it will be handed over to Staff Development when it is mainstreamed.

How do mentors and mentorees come together ?
Mentorees nominate to be on the program. They are selected by the steering committee on the basis of the reasons they give for wanting to participate. The mentor is then selected by the mentoree.

What mentor model(s) do you use ?
One on one.

Are mentors and mentorees trained ?
Yes, mentors and mentorees have two days training, 1 day together and 1 day separately. There are monthly meetings of mentors and mentorees separately, and a quarterly review of mentors and mentorees together.

Do they have a mentoring agreement ?
Yes, guidelines are provided for them to develop their own agreement.

What time frame does the mentoring relationship cover ?
Formally for twelve months - all mentors have indicated they expect the relationship to continue.

What role did Senior Management play in the program ?
We have had strong support from the Executive Director - he is also a mentor as am I and another Director.
I chair the steering committee and monthly meeting of mentors.

How did you communicate the program to the organisation ?
Fliers were distributed and an information session with the external consultant was held. Our internal journal carried stories in every edition.
At the spokeswomens annual information day the external consultant was a guest speaker, talking about mentoring.

What difficulties have arisen within the mentoring program ?
We have had very few difficulties. There was, however, some initial uncertainty about whether mentorees were getting unfair access to information if their mentor was very senior.

What elements have worked particularly well ?
The one-on-one nature of the relationship
The ability for the mentoring relationship to meet the needs of individuals
The approach taken by the consultant that this is a growth experience

What benefits have been derived from the program ?
Benefits include

  • Better communication - people are learning to talk one-on-one
  • Increased understanding of organisational issues
  • Needs of individuals being met in a very cost-effective way
  • It has brought a humaneness to the culture

Is there anything else about your program that you think would be helpful to others ?
In conjunction with this program, we offered a career development workshop to participants if they were interested. This was highly valued by the attendees.

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