Mentoring is a relationship between two people where one more person knowledgable trains and transfers information to a less knowledgeable one. Many times mentoring is more efficient than formal training or education.
A lot of companies have programs that formalize and promote mentoring. The trend, however, seems to be fading. There are businesses that never formalize their programs, but still have informal mentoring in order to save money either in managing the program, or in training.
Mentoring doesn’t need to be costly or complicated. Also just because the program is formal, the mentoring doesn’t have to be. All you really need are two willing people and a quiet space.
Employees usually want to help their co-workers regardless of whether you formalize a program or not, but if you do there are benefits. Here are five reasons your new business should have a formal mentoring program
1 – Promote awareness
By adopting a formal mentoring program your employees will be aware of the opportunities of both mentoring and being mentored. You are acknowledging help is sometimes needed, and is available in-house.
Additionally, a formal program may be used for enticing potential new employees.
2 – Recognize talent.
A formal program with formal rewards can be used to recognize excellent mentors and the people they train. This is a simple, great benefit for motivating employees. The benefits offered need not be expensive.
3 – Retain knowledge.
Employees leave. All of their knowledge and expertise goes with them. Mentoring is one way of retaining and passing on the knowledge and experience of employees. With today’s aging employee-base this becomes more important. It is easy to teach information and facts, it’s more difficult teaching experience. Mentoring is the bridge.
4 – Reduce stress
By having a formal program, you are recognizing that people want and will help each other. Oftentimes, employees may have questions or problems and another employee will help them. If you don’t have a formal program the person providing the help may feel stressed because they are taking time away from their own job and responsibilities. By promoting mentorship you recognize those involved are doing so without penalty.
5 – Build teams
By promoting mentorship you can bring people together that may not interact otherwise. This fosters communication and camaraderie.
A formal mentoring program helps your business and everyone involved.