Won’t You Be My Mentor? 5 Strategies for Convincing Your Top-Tier Employees to Participate

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Finding people at your office to join a mentorship program on the mentee side is easy. Who doesn’t want face time with a higher level executive or the advice of someone who might promote them one day? Convincing your upper level management to take on the role of mentors proves a bit more daunting. Our experience, however, demonstrates that mentors feel more connected to their colleagues and workplace, and benefit from the experience in numerous ways.

“I really enjoy being a mentor and giving back. When you have a good experience with the mentorship, you’re likely to stay in touch with your mentee throughout your career,” a recent mentor of a program at eMentorConnect recently reported.

Here are some methods for recruiting mentors in your office:

Wanna join? Giving employees the option to participate as a mentor is the most passive approach. This tactic benefits offices that already promote a robust mentoring program and employees are familiar with the benefits of mentoring. It’s also an excellent approach for potential mentors who are interested in cultivating diversity and inclusion, or expanding their network.

You like me! You really like me! Ask executives to nominate middle management employees for mentoring positions. Remember, flattery will get you everywhere. These nominees will feel the dual pressure and reward of being chosen by their boss, and will see this opportunity as a chance to grow.

Scratch their back, and they’ll scratch yours. With Just-in-Time Mentoring, you can recommend someone to be a mentor for a specific topic, while giving them the role of mentee for another. This strategy treats everyone to the chance of gaining new skills or knowledge, while rewarding colleagues with strong skills in a specific area. On-demand mentoring or project-specific mentoring programs increase engagement and boost retention.
Be mine? Check yes or no. Allow your mentees to solicit the mentor of their choosing. Of course, this strategy still provides the potential mentor with the chance to decline. Let your employees know the benefits and details of how mentorship works in advance, stress the active role of the mentee, and hope that your desirable mentors will accept the requests with humility and grace.

Show ‘em the ropes! Let each mentor candidate know that you’ll provide training for them to help them get started. No one wants a long meeting, so offer access to succinct and impactful webinars that go over roles, responsibilities, and expectations.

As for you, by choosing eMentorConnect to manage your office’s mentorship program, you can facilitate any of these strategies with ease. Our software provides you with the tools you need to lead trainings, pair mentors and mentees, and keep track of meetings, exercises, and goals along the way. Remind your mentors that you’re there as a resource, and you’ll have them asking “Who’s my next mentee?”

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Kate Mason
kate.mason@ementorconnect.com

Kate Mason is a writer, historian, and stand-up comic living in New Orleans, LA. She is the Programming Coordinator for the New Orleans Film Society and an avid enthusiast of pop culture. She approaches mentoring challenges with a witty, creative mind.

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