Why Employees Should Embrace The Mentor / Mentee Dynamic
Many people dislike the idea of being the new guy in town, having to be shown around and not knowing the lay of the land. But when a new employee joins an organization, that’s an unavoidable situation. Rather than being prideful and refusing help, though, these newcomers should embrace their position. Likewise, those tasked with helping a new recruit to acclimate should be enthusiastic and helpful. This isn’t just a matter of being friendly – it’s good business.
“Those tasked with helping a new recruit to acclimate should be enthusiastic and helpful.”
Mentorships can be an asset to the company
Any good company will bring in new hires from time to time. Then, it’s a matter of getting these recruits up to speed about how exactly you do business. It’s a more nuanced process than simply transferring a person’s skills from one desk to another – there are specific processes and cultural elements for this person to learn. Even simple questions like, “Where’s the fridge?” can be intimidating for a new hire to ask if he or she is naturally an introvert.
Mentorships allow employees to transition into the workplace seamlessly and become productive members of the office as quickly as possible. In addition, by selecting tenured individuals as mentors, management is bestowing additional responsibilities and issuing a vote of confidence. Plus, mentorships are a company’s contingency plan – they allow experienced employees to pass on their knowledge before they move on or retire, reported Federal News Radio.
“There’s definitely a strong desire among members of my generation to want to know what’s ahead,” Kehli Cage, director of mentoring and fellowships at Young Government Leaders, told Federal News Radio. “They’re very concerned about foresight. ‘I see that you’re here, how do I get here?’ I think that’s what mentoring does.”
Build a better culture through employee relationships
One of the quickest ways to push a new employee out the door is to make him or her feel alienated. Successful companies realize that people work better when they’re in a setting that makes them feel comfortable. That doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be challenged or pushed – just that they should feel empowered to take on the task at hand by a productive setting and a positive team.
By mentoring new talent, an organization will make that person feel like a part of the group from the start. It will also give experienced employees a sense of responsibility and a chance to learn from someone with a different background. In fact, one company implemented a reverse-mentorship program, where experienced employees are mentored by younger, newer ones, according to Think Advisor. The idea is that older workers can get set in their ways while younger professionals have a different way of looking at things.
“One way in which we at Pershing have begun to elicit new perspectives is with our reverse mentoring program, wherein we pair millennial employees with members of our executive committee,” Mark Tibergien, CEO of Pershing, wrote in Think Advisor. “This program has been one of the most profound learning experiences I have ever had. It takes a point of view critical to our future, and systematically informs and challenges the ways I think, act and resolve problems.”
Through programs like these, organizations can boost morale, plan for the future and pass along innovative ideas. Communication is key to good business and the mentor/mentee dynamic is at the heart of that discourse.