How To Guide: Choosing Employees for Mentors

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Mentors play an instrumental role in the personal and professional development of employees at all levels within the company.  The most effective place for a mentor is within the onboarding of new employees.  The mentee is able to advance at an accelerated rate by-passing roadblocks that might have occurred in the first months on the job.

Are you a leader preparing the companies 2014 areas of focus for ensuring a successful business year?  I highly recommend rolling out a mentorship program and selecting a passionate program manager to lead the program.  A mentorship program motivates current employees and builds confidence in employees entering the organization.  In order to find the best employees for the mentor program, you need to focus on the top 5 characteristics found within the most successful mentors.

#1 Commitment

 There are some employees that talk the talk and others that walk the walk.  The best mentors are the ones that talk the talk and walk the walk.  They will make statements that XYZ will need to be handled before completing project 245.  And, they will have the ball rolling within the hour working across departments to make it happen.  They know everything about the organization and are familiar with everyone working for the company.  Their lives rotate around making themselves and the company successful.  Ask them to be a mentor!  As Ace Ventura say’s in Pet Detective, “Fits Like A Glove!”

 #2 Camaraderie

 The most important characteristic to find in a mentor is the ability to connect with the mentee.  This really takes a highly skilled individual within the company that understands personality assessment.  Someone who is able to connect the right mentor with the right mentee.  Such individuals can be found in the human resource or recruiting departments.  Ask around the company, as they are typically known well by others.

 #3 Discretion

 The individual within the organization that can be trusted with the most confidential information has the ability to offer a place of trust for the mentee to share personal information in order to help them develop the skills wanted and required.  This employee can be found listening to others with great intent with a fountain of wisdom to share when needed.  “There was great difference between persons and, discretion did not always accompany years nor was youth always without it” It is best to not focus on age when seeking the employee that possesses discretion.

#4 Integrity

 In order for the mentee to trust their mentor and soar like an eagle, they must be able to respect their mentor during the mentorship.  The best example of a mentor with high integrity was in the movie The Karate Kid.  The meaning expressed through the words of Mr. Miyagi, “Wax On, Wax Off” taught the young Daniel Son to appreciate every step within each lesson as building blocks for achieving the overall goals.  Seek the employee that all others respect and ye shall find the mentor.

#5 Mindfulness

This employee will stand out from all others because their personality is infectious causing everyone around them to feel a sense of happiness and self-worth.  Seek out the employee who is being kind to others and those that live by the karma codes. “People accept only that person as their leader who is radiant with good knowledge and karma.

I hope you are able to include a mentor program in your top strategic goals for 2014.  All employees are in need of direction from their leaders and find inspiration and motivation through a selected mentor.

How effective have mentor relationships been in your career development? 

The mind is not a vessel to be filled, but a fire to be kindled.”

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