21 compelling advantages of mentoring and coaching in the workplace, plus one of the most unique business mentoring programmes in the world
The benefits of mentoring and coaching are extremely well documented throughout human history. Virtually every biography of every successful person mentions their mentor – from as early as Ancient Greece when Socrates mentored Plato.
It’s true. Maya Angelou was Oprah Winfrey’s mentor. Christian Dior mentored Yves Saint-Laurent. Warren Buffet mentored Bill Gates. Steve Jobs mentored Mark Zuckerberg. Sir Freddie Laker mentored Richard Branson.
But mentoring is not just for billionaires and the super successful. Our LifeXchange Community has been using mentoring programmes to drive remarkable social change – supported by government, universities and official bodies across the country – by helping rehabilitate gangsters, homeless, at-risk youth and even prisoners with huge success for over a decade and a half.
And, due to demand in the commercial sector, we developed LifeXchange Solutions’ one-of-a-kind neuro mentoring programmes, specifically for business. Supported by the SA Board for People’s practices and recognised by 16 official bodies around the country, we’ve proven that every business is the ideal opportunity to use mentoring and coaching to drive real change and growth and benefits for all stakeholders – see: What is mentoring.
21 BENEFITS OF MENTORING AND COACHING IN THE WORKPLACE
Why? Because of the amazing benefits at so many levels within your company. Here, we bring you some of the most important ones: 21 Benefits of mentoring for your organisation: 8 for your company as a whole, 5 benefits for the mentee, 3 for their team and the 5 benefits of mentoring for the mentor themself.
8 BENEFITS OF MENTORING TO THE ORGANISATION
1. MENTORING IS SUSTAINABLE
Unlike coaching, which is an external person who comes in for a limited time period and then leaves again, a mentoring programme is internal. It’s your own staff learning the vital skills of supporting and coaching each other from the inside. So investing in it now has continual long-term benefits. See the differences between mentoring and coaching.
2. IT DRIVES REAL CHANGE
If you’re at all familiar with LifeXchange’s neuromanagement, you’ll understand exactly why people keep falling back into their old bad habits. (If you haven’t experienced our neuroscience insights into business, see how your minds works and book a mind-blowing neuromanagement workshop for your team.)
And you’ll also understand that, since mentoring is a long-term sustainable investment in people, it’s way more suited to helping people in your company overcome the limitations of their neural pathways and auto memory recall – to change habits and drive real positive change.
3. IT’S AN INVESTMENT IN SOCIAL CAPITAL
Here’s a mental picture of what a mentoring programme inside your company looks like: Imagine every employee has at least two very special connections, they have a mentor who’s guiding them, and they are simultaneously passing it on by mentoring someone else. Immediately, every single person in your company now has direct and positive trust-based connections within your organisation. Now that’s already a huge investment in social capital.
4. MENTORING IS A BOON TO COMPANY CULTURE
A mentoring programme immediately adds a few significant elements to your company culture: Trust, connection, guidance, upskilling. It instantly sends an extremely powerful message to everyone in your company: We care about you, and we want to invest in your happiness, your future and your success. Now isn’t that a company you’d want to work for?
5. IT UNIFIES YOUR COMPANY
Again, imagine everyone in the company has various positive connections. But, more than that, imagine the power a company-wide mentoring campaign has in binding together your various branches. Imagine the support structure you create when the managers in outlying regions know they have a direct line to someone (their mentor) at head office that can listen, support and give advice. What better way to ensure that all your business divisions and clusters all work towards the same goal?
6. MENTORING PROMOTES EMPLOYEE WELLNESS
And if you’ve forged deep and meaningful connections between your employees, and they help guide and support each other, isn’t a healthier workplace the ultimate byproduct?
7. IT HELPS WITH STAFF RETENTION
For all the reasons people give for wanting to leave a company – money, their boss etc. – research shows that it’s the company culture and whether you feel appreciated that really makes you stay or go – see the weird science of employee motivation. A mentoring programme has all that naturally built into it.
8. MENTORING ENABLES GROWTH
It’s obvious. If everyone is connected within the company, and have access to not only the knowledge of how to take the next step but also someone rooting for them and urging them on, people are more likely to invest more of themselves, drive themselves forward. And the company as a whole benefits. Where would your company be if every single person came to work and gave it their all, every day?
5 WAYS MENTORING BENEFITS THE MENTEE (PERSON WHO IS MENTORED)
1. THEY IMMEDIATELY FEEL LIKE PART OF THE COMPANY
If you walk in and, on your first day, you get the benefit of a close relationship with someone with a little more experience than you in this company, you immediately feel welcomed and inspired to find your place in the team. Also, you’re way more likely to grow quickly and stay at the company.
2. THEY SEE THE VALUE IN WHAT THEY DO
By investing in an employee’s growth and development from day one, they have immediate access to the knowledge and insights they need to really start contributing. There’s no need to guess “how this company works” etc. You have someone on hand that helps guide you the second you walk in the door, so your work can be more effective and rewarding.
3. THE MENTEE BENEFITS FROM SUPPORT AND GUIDANCE
A new person in the company needn’t worry at all if they have a question or are unsure of something – the mentee has a direct line to an experienced person to help and guide them. That’s worth its weight in gold.
4. THEY HAVE A HEALTHY PLATFORM FOR ASKING QUESTIONS AND TRYING OUT IDEAS
One of the biggest wastes, when a new employee starts, is their inexperience in how your company does things. It takes time to figure out how it all works, so it takes time to bring in new ideas and change. But having a mentor helps the new mentee cut through all of that quickly – the mentor can explain systems, processes, needs etc. to the mentee and the mentee can run ideas past the mentor before bringing it up publicly. So mentoring helps keep your company streamlined and effective.
5. IT GIVES THEM A CHANCE TO HONE THEIR SKILLS
One of the most overlooked basic human needs in business today is what we call mastery (see Erikson’s Theory and the Circle of Courage) or competency (see the Human Development Cycle). And it says that upskilling your staff is not just a nice-to-have, it’s a basic human need, and people will actually leave your company if you don’t do it.
A mentoring programme gives you an awesome built-in opportunity to invest in your people’s development. The mentor is ideally placed – because they know the mentee more personally than HR – to guide the mentee toward tasks and programmes that will help advance their career, and so doing the whole company.
3 HUGE BENEFITS OF MENTORING FOR A TEAM
1. MENTORING UNIFIES TEAMS
Because every person within the team has a mentor, they have help and guidance from a more experienced person outside of the team that they can bounce ideas of and get tips and guidance from. But, importantly, every member of the team has this, so they already feel more part of the company. Thus, when the teams get together, they are all already more incorporated into the company culture and able to work together because they have support both from within and without their immediate team.
2. PEOPLE ARE ABLE TO SUPPORT AND GUIDE EACH OTHER
Importantly, helping people develop and grow was traditionally the role of HR. And HR’s very busy. So, if you have numerous teams with loads of people, HR battles to get to everyone. So, if you have problems at team level, it often blows up simply because HR is overburdened.
But if you have a mentoring programme, you don’t have that problem, because each person has a personal relationship with a mentor who can help them navigate any problems they have much faster, meaning you’re much less likely to have issues at team level. It’s everyone supporting everyone, instead of one division having to support everyone in the company.
3. IT HELPS MAXIMISE EACH INDIVIDUAL’S POTENTIAL
If each person has their own mentor outside of the team dynamic that can help them focus on their own growth, each team member brings more to the table. And stronger individual contributions leads to more effective teams.
5 WAYS MENTORING BENEFITS THE MENTOR (PERSON WHO DOES THE MENTORING)
1. MENTORING BRINGS HUGE GROWTH AND PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT TO THE MENTOR, TOO
When you learn to mentor others, you learn essential life and development skills. LifeXchange Solutions’ mentoring programmes, for example, involve highly advanced neuroscience, behavioural psychology and neurolinguistic programming (NLP) insights.
Now, you normally pay to have an external person with that kind of knowledge come in to help your company. But with a mentoring programme, your mentors themselves gain these skills, which is huge personal growth for them – and a boost to your company a whole at the same time.
2. THE TRAINING CRAFTS MANAGERS WITH HUGE POTENTIAL
And that personal growth we mentioned before goes hand-in-hand with some really advanced people skills. Often, the kind you need from a really effective management team. So, you’ll find that investing in a mentoring programme helps develop mentors who will make the best kind of future managers for your company.
3. MENTORING IS HOLISTIC AND LIFE-CHANGING, EVEN FOR THE MENTOR
As beneficial as mentoring is to the mentee, it’s also life-changing for the mentor. They get equipped with incredible new skills, and it’s something that sets your company apart from most other companies – adding to improved employee wellness and staff retention.
4. MENTORS LEARN PRACTICAL PEOPLE SKILLS FOR TOUGH SITUATIONS
We recently rolled out a mentoring programme at the Department of Health. And one of the mentors describes the skills they picked like so:
“This mentoring training helped me dig deep to identify and develop strengths I was not consciously aware of. I learned to better conduct difficult conversations and hold people accountable for their responsibilities in ways that dramatically improved my relationship with colleagues and supervisors. It improved my ability to influence real change,” says Mothomone Pitsi, director at the Department of Health.
5. COACHING OTHERS FULFILLS A CORE NEED
Now, just as honing your skills is a core human need, it turns out that teaching and guiding others is a core need too (see generosity and giving back under Erikson’s Theory and the Circle of Courage, as well as the concept of purpose in the Human Development Cycle).
And, simply put, if you don’t give employees a chance to pass on their knowledge to others, they won’t feel fulfilled at work. A mentoring programme takes care of that, so it’s basically one of the most holistic people-based initiatives you can employ in your company.
HOW TO GET THE BENEFITS OF A MENTORING PROGRAMME IN YOUR COMPANY
Now, we’ve been doing this for over a decade-and-a-half. And we know what works and what doesn’t. (See: What is mentoring.) That’s how we at LifeXchange Solutions developed the first and only fully support online and practical mentoring programme in the world.
It’s supported by universities and institutions around the country, and it’s specifically designed to give you all the benefits of mentoring in a format that’s custom-designed for your company.
Discover LifeXchange Solutions’ one-of-a-kind mentoring training.
Plus: Discover science-based organisational development with the No 1 future-first change management company.
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