6 Tips to Keep Mentors and Mentees EngagedNovember 15, 2017
Many individuals know the benefits of participating in a mentoring program, but there are times that the benefits may not be enough to keep them engaged. A lack of motivation, time, or energy lead to the disengagement of mentors and mentees who were ready and willing to put in the work needed to reach their career and leadership. It’s important that organizations, and especially mentoring program administrators, work to keep their participants engaged to help them succeed.
Here are 6 tips on how you can keep your mentors and mentees engaged in mentoring.Position Mentoring as a Business Strategy
When you position mentoring as a business strategy, you are showing every individual in your organization just how important this program is. It’s important to have participants set objectives and goals for their mentoring relationship so that they have something to work towards. Use those objectives to remind them that when they are meeting they are working. This will help them become more engaged in the process.
Communicate the Benefits and the Challenges
This may seem like a “no-brainer”, but you would be surprised at how many individuals are unaware of the benefits that a mentoring relationship can benefit them and the organization. By explaining these benefits to them, you are giving them even more reason to commit to the process. But it’s not all about the benefits. It’s also important to be up-front about the challenges and how to overcome them. This will take away a lot of the excuses that participants may have when they become less engaged.
Get the Managers Involved
This is something that is often overlooked by mentoring program administrators. Have buy-in from your mentor and/or mentee’s manager is a great way to keep the participants engaged. Not only will they have another person checking-in on the progress of the relationship, but the manager will need to be understanding of the time set aside for mentoring.
Require a Mentoring Agreement
Having a mentoring agreement should be standard for any mentoring relationship. This agreement doesn’t just lay out the specifics of the relationship, but it can also provide a solution to challenges before they arise. By having a mentoring agreement, participants are already stating when, how, and where they will meet. This will keep them engaged because they know what to expect and will make it part of their routine.
Check-in Throughout the Program
Because the mentor and mentee can get side-tracked and put off their mentoring relationship, it is important to check-in with all participants throughout the program. This will keep the momentum going and even re-engage the participants that may have started to “check-out” of the program.
Be Ready to Facilitate Change
Things happen, and you must be prepared to step in when necessary. Whether it’s a mentoring relationship that isn’t working out or an emergency that takes one of the participants out of the program, your mentors and mentees will need you to navigate them through the changes. Being prepared for change can help your program, and the participating individuals, be more successful.
If you are interested in learning more about how Insala can help you implement a mentoring program for your organization, please visit our website.