Recruiting mentors is one of the biggest challenges organizations face when starting a mentoring program, so here are our top 10 ideas to help you out.
How effective your mentoring program is entirely dependent on the participants you recruit. Mentoring within an organization is becoming increasingly significant with 67% of businesses reporting an increase in productivity and 55% stating an increase in profits due to mentoring programs. Starting a program within your company is the start of truly exciting times ahead and a chance for real transformation.
Over the years, mentoring has proven extremely beneficial to organizations with the benefits outweighing any costs involved. However, one of the most frequent challenges faced is actually how to recruit effective mentors within your organization. You should be considering these ideas when it comes to recruiting and retaining your mentors:
1. Having a target audience and key objectives
The first step and arguably the most important factor in promoting your program and recruiting mentors is to understand your target audience and key objectives. You need to work together with your team to fully comprehend why you need a program and who it is targeted at. Are you looking to improve employee engagement? Is there a barrier between departments? Is employee retention low? These are just some of the more common reasons people implement a mentoring program in their organization. Once you’ve identified your key objectives and audience, you can begin acting on ideas to promote the program company-wide.
2. Get senior leadership involved
Creating a successful mentoring culture and program within your organization begins with senior leadership. You need to ensure the senior members of your business are advocates of the program and efficiently convey the importance of mentoring to their colleagues, their success stories, and positive experience. This will improve the visibility of the program and how it’s received across your organization. By engaging with senior team members and having them on board as mentors (or reverse mentees) is highly impactful on how the organization as a whole embraces mentoring and inspires your employees.
3. Success stories
When trying to relate with your staff members, personalized messages work great. Personal stories from participants of your mentoring program are the ideal way to showcase the influence and success of mentoring within your organization. Video testimonials and quotes about things such as how the mentoring program has allowed for promotions to be made, the new skills learned by the mentees/mentors, and the personal goals met are some of the things you should be convincing when trying to attract people to the program.
4. Case studies
Although considered similar to success stories, case studies also show the challenges faced and how the individual was able to overcome any obstacles. Case studies are a great way to showcase the success of the program within your organization. You can share the case studies with your organization through the use of emails, articles, and social posts.
5. Host mentoring events
With the lockdown being lifted, people are more eager than ever to attend real-life events, however, these events can also be hosted online. Hosting a mentoring program kick-off launch or ongoing events can be a powerful way of drawing people’s attention to the mentoring scheme you have in place at your organization. Hosting an event where an inspiring mentor can speak to your employees, a place where they can have the opportunity to network with other mentoring members and discuss their stories is highly impactful.
6. Be clear on commitments
It’s essential that you’re clear on the commitments and expectations of mentors, not only to recruit them but to retain them. Provide your employees with transparent and realistic guidelines of what’s expected, including things such as time commitments and how they can help. Some of your employees may not have sufficient free time outside of work due to other personal life responsibilities and need to ensure they have enough time left in their schedule to help mentees before signing up.
7. Email communication
The use of email is a popular communication technique used by companies worldwide. This popular method of communicating with employees is a great way to get the message out there, without taking up too many resources. To recruit mentors to your program you can send a company-wide email outlining more about the program, what’s involved and the value it adds for the individual. However, as it’s easy for employees to miss or ignore their emails, there are factors you need to think about such as the time you send the email or the subject line.
8. Instant messenger channels
Besides email, since the beginning of last year, more companies are using other means of communication such as Slack, Zoom, or teams. If your organization has any of these in place it would be advised to also communicate about the program via these channels by sending out a mass message to all the members of your organization.
9. Team meetings
Have the managers at your organization host team meetings to discuss the implementation of the new program. Your managers know and work with their team members and know exactly who would be a great fit for the program. Your team leaders can also be advocates of the program, conveying its significance.
10. Portray the value
The main factor in recruiting and retaining mentors is ensuring your company can express the value mentoring brings to the table. As mentoring is a voluntary experience, it’s crucial to showcase the impression it can have not only on them as an individual but the business in general. To illustrate the value, you need to have a plan in place to fully understand how you’re going to reach these members and what methods you’re going to use. Examples of this could be utilizing email, and producing videos and internal blog posts.
When recruiting mentors for your program, it’s important to strategically plan your methods and truly understand how as an organization you’re able to demonstrate the value and impact the program brings to your staff members. Don’t wait until the last moment and leave the mentors to come to you, utilise these ideas to guarantee your mentoring program is as effective and thriving as possible.
Source: pushfar.com ~ Image: Canva Pro