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Mentoring Process and the Different Types of Mentoring Available to Organizations

Autor:   •  November 24, 2011  •  Research Paper  •  2,494 Words (10 Pages)  •  1,256 Views

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The purpose of this paper is to provide readers with a greater understanding of the mentoring process and the different types of mentoring available to organizations. This project also seeks to enlighten readers on the advantages of mentoring relationships for organizations, mentors, and mentees alike.

Mentoring in Organizations

Mentoring and coaching are words that may be used interchangeably in regards to employee development. Mentoring is a process that typically involves a one-on-one relationship between two members of an organization's workforce. Mentoring programs are believed to be extremely beneficial for organizations. In fact, "much of the excitement over mentoring in business and industry originated from a 1979 article in the Harvard Business Review, which claimed that professionals who had mentors reported higher levels of satisfaction, earned more money at a younger age and were better educated (Gibson, 2004, p. 263)." Research conducted from about 1989 to 2004 indicated that improved job approval and greater salary levels, better rates of advancement, improved levels of organizational obligation and socialization, and reduced feelings of alienation in the workplace are indeed benefits associated with mentoring programs. (Gibson, 2004)

Just as the benefits of mentoring programs are numerous, so also are the types of mentoring programs available to organizations. There is no "one size fits all" when it comes to mentoring programs. Actually, because mentoring programs serve a variety of purposes, their characteristics vary greatly. For example, mentoring can be mandatory or voluntary, take place in groups or in pairs, function between peers or hierarchically, transpire within a single organization or across organizations, include multiple mentors, and even occur at a distance (D'Abate & Eddy, 2008, p. 364)." Some organizations may choose mentoring programs to train or aid new personnel in adapting to the organizational culture; while others may choose a mentoring program as a means of employing leadership, management, or career development. Mentoring programs can also be used to provide educational support, address issues with job performance, and help with employee recruitment and retention.

In addition to the aforementioned characteristics, mentoring programs may also be formal or informal in nature. Formal mentoring programs tend to be well structured, supervised programs that have defined sets of goals and objectives that are established by the organization. Informal programs are just the opposite. They are apt to have little, if any, supervision, structure, or set goals and objectives. Formal and informal mentoring programs are also inclined to differ in four other areas. The levels of intensity, prominence, emphasis, and duration


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