4.1 Building your mentoring skills
Key areas to work on are communication skills, empathy and goal setting. There are many scenarios that will allow you to develop and enhance those skills, from communicating with members of your team in the workplace to setting goals for your children.
Practice being really present in every conversation – not cutting the other person off or jumping in to finish off what you think they’re going to say, but really listening and responding in a measured and thoughtful way.
You will find out more about training for mentors in Week 8.
Benefits to your career
Quast (2011) presents the following list of ways that being a mentor can benefit your career:
- Better understanding of the business
- Better understanding of how people perceive you
- Creating a larger network
- Helping to solve issues
- Personal satisfaction.
She goes on to quote some statistics compiled by the Human Resources department of Sun Microsystems (Fisher, 2007). They compared the career progress of approximately 1000 employees over a five-year period and found:
- Both mentors and mentees were approximately 20% more likely to get a pay increased than people who did not participate in the mentoring programme.
- 25% of mentees and 28% of mentors received a pay increased – versus only 5% of managers who were not mentors.
- Employees who received mentoring were promoted five times more often than people who didn’t have mentors.
- Mentors were six times more likely to have been promoted to a bigger job.