There is a strong argument to be made that the defining characteristic of the 21st century has been a tendency towards complexity. The onslaught of technological advances of the last decades has expanded the possibilities of corporate action and, as a consequence, made competitiveness more difficult to achieve.
This means that achieving success is explicitly entwined with your business’s ability to find cost-effective and high-impact solutions to any problem that may arise.
A well-implemented mentoring program can do many things.
On an individual basis, your employee, will enjoy significantly faster adaptation to the workplace environment, acquire enhanced skill development, and gain access to an essential network of key co-workers.
In turn, the corporation achieves a significantly lower turn-over ratio and increases their productivity by ensuring the existence of a more competent and confident workforce.
A skilled corporate mentor will add value to your operation and do so while minimizing risks. However, it is essential that realistic expectations are established.
The Value of Having Clear-cut Objectives and Goals
At the end of the day, the single most important factor to any corporation or organization is the bottom line. Therefore, the cost-value ratio of a corporate mentoring program becomes a crucial factor to consider.
How much will establishing a mentoring program cost the company? Versus how much money the company will potentially save in the long run with such enactment?
The answer to those questions can only truly be determined by establishing precise and realistic goals.
According to the project management philosophy of SMART criteria, corporate mentoring program goals must be specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and timely.
That means that goal-setting must be strategic, well-resourced, and aligned with corporate goals.
Without this mentality, there is no effective way to initiate, plan, execute, nor control a mentoring program. And lacking the ability to do so, instantly and genuinely, derails any potential for success.
This applies to any project and not just a corporate mentoring program.
Foster Connections: The best mentoring programs will prioritize establishing and fostering connections between the mentors and mentees. Without this crucial step, the program will implode and fail. The project manager should prioritize establishing an environment that sustains the organic development of these relationships.
Instill The Best Practices: This requires outlining the expectations of all parties involved in the program. Make sure that over time, these expectations are met. In case that meeting certain expectations is not possible, ensure that everyone involved understands the reasons why. Make sure that the mentees understand that mentors are not expected to solve problems, but rather instill the best practices so that the employees themselves find the most effective solution.
Develop High Performance: One of the crucial goals of any mentorship program should be to enable promising employees to develop to their full potential, and facilitate their upward movement through the organization. Research has shown that when top-level positions are filled by employees who have tracked their progress through the ranks, the corporation as a whole performs more efficiently.
Establish these goals early on, and you will significantly increase the success rate of your corporate mentoring program.