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Measuring Mentors: Guidelines for an Effective Mentorship Program

Strategic organizations believe in empowering exemplary employees to invest in new hires. Mentorship programs can expedite on-boarding, build organizational culture, and increase employee retention. However, not all mentoring programs are created equal. You can increase the quality of your program by following these guidelines:

1. Have clear expectations. Specifically define what is involved in the program, including the time commitments, types of activity expected, and duration of the program. Provide regular check-ins with mentors throughout the program to see what successes and challenges they are encountering.

2. Set a specific term. Ask mentors to sign up for a concrete duration of time with the option to extend their term. In order to be effective, mentoring relationships should last at least one to two years.

3. Invite feedback. When the mentor and mentees conclude their time, ask for feedback about the program, whether or not they decide to extend their term. This ongoing input allows you to continually refine the program.

4. Solicit mentor recommendations. Invite mentors to recommend other mentors. Creating a culture of mentorship from the inside out is more effective than building one from the top-down. Ask your engaged mentors to recommend others to join the program.

As your mentors invest in their mentees, your organization should be investing in the mentors. Provide them ongoing training and resources to enable them to grow and your mentorship program to thrive.