This spring Claire Morley-Jones helped start-up business founder Emily Forbes through the Plusnet Pioneers mentoring programme (see our earlier blog). What about for your business – could a mentoring programme work for you?
Claire tells us more about what a good mentoring programme might look like for an SME.
By Claire Morley-Jones
A mentoring programme can target key business requirements such as:
According to www.micromentor.org (a free community of entrepreneurs and volunteer business mentors) thriving entrepreneurs credit mentoring as a critical component of their success.
The website states that 83% of mentored businesses survive compared with a 74% survival rate for businesses without mentoring, 83% thrive by increasing revenues 5 times better than without a mentor and 77% grow though mentored businesses creating or retaining jobs.
Can you segue this entrepreneurial success through mentoring into the workplace to help YOUR business grow? I think so and here’s how I would do it.
10 ideas to guide a successful mentoring programme
Here are 10 ideas to guide the development of your own mentoring programme:
1. A mentoring programme can be an amazing way to retain your best employees by making it possible for them to grow personally at the same time as your business grows.
2. It can have developmental benefits for the mentor as well as the mentoree.
3. It can work well to engage employees of an organisation which has a workforce with disparate ages or experience.
4. To achieve success you will need to precisely match mentor and mentoree – they must be able to work well together.
5. Ensure you have the right people for the programme through developing a ‘wish list’ of behaviours you’d require for both mentor and mentoree – time in position or age does not alone a good mentor make!
6. Soft skills will make the difference between a successful (or otherwise!) mentor, such as handling emotion and knowing how to give (and take!) feedback.
7. This is NOT supervision or training, however mentoring may be used to reduce the need for supervision by strengthening workplace skills.
8. There must be SMART goals in place for the mentoring programme allied to the business strategy.
9. Ensure both parties get the most out of the process by thoroughly explaining your goals and expectations – and manage their expectations at the same time.
10. Regular assessments will keep the programme on track – and make sure both parties keep to plan!
As HR professionals we set up and help SME businesses run their own mentoring programmes based on their business needs. If you’d like to explore how we can help your enterprise, bring in the HR superteam from HR180. Contact details below and we will set up a free meet up to chat through your situation.
Leeds based HR180 is a team of superheroes in HR Outsourcing, Projects and Consultancy committed to work in partnership with organisations of all sizes to establish working policies to go above and beyond Employment Law requirements, to protect both employees and employers alike. We love to hear from you, so call us on 0113 287 8150 or hit the Rescue Me button.