Employees just starting out in business don’t always know where their strong points are. Many young professionals fall into roles that don’t challenge them. Their work becomes monotonous, leading to boredom and disengagement after a period of time. Some employees feel out of place or aimless, and even though they might be passing up an opportunity to earn valuable experience and a good paycheck, they nevertheless decide to move on.
Here is the question that arises: What if these things affect several employees? What if they affect the whole workforce? The company operates with a team of less-than-motivated employees, unable to foster the strong and effective relationships of a dynamic workforce because no one sticks around long enough to lay the groundwork.
In the meantime, promising individuals move on without having realized their true potential or value to the organization. Pairing incoming employees, especially those who seem lost or dejected in their day-to-day activities, can make all the difference in tackling this problem at its core.
Mentors understand the difficult task of finding your “place” in the business world. Chances are it took them a good amount of time, along with the directed guidance of a mentor of their own, to find the niche they were able to thrive in. This is exactly the experience and knowledge a mentor can transfer to a mentee. Their service extends beyond simple career advice to helping mentees grow as individuals with the confidence and direction they need to find a role they can excel in. Mentors bolster early career development in numerous ways, but let's go over a few of the most important ones:
Opening lines of communication
A mentor serves as a source of support to his/her mentees and can be a confidant for all career-related matters. This opens up lines of communication where mentees can express their thoughts and doubts—whether it be about their career goals or the role they are currently in—without fear. Over a period of time, mentees lose their inhibitions and learn to communicate freely with their mentors and colleagues.
Extending professional connections
Individuals just starting out in their careers don’t have many business connections to draw from. This can make them feel alone and unsure of what connections to make or where to start building relationships. On the other hand, an experienced mentor has a vast network of professional peers and trusted colleagues to work with. When mentors and mentees build good relationships, mentees have a unique opportunity to expand their networks by tapping into a resource that has been developed over many years.
Greener employees are often reserved by nature, since they’re still learning to build confidence in their work and abilities. Employees working in new environments or roles they are unsure of can be especially prone to withdrawing from the team and convincing themselves they’re not good enough. Mentors have worked in many roles and most likely in various organizations throughout their careers, and they undoubtedly experienced bouts of low morale along the way. Mentors remind mentees that they have value, they’re not alone, their feelings are normal and common, and that they can learn to be confident and proactive in their careers.
Offering advice on workplace know-how
When new employees first join a workplace, they tend to lay low and exist on the sidelines. Most new hires are reluctant to ask for help. The result is that they build a reputation for having reservations and low self-confidence. They inevitably miss out on opportunities to advance within the organization, to build their skills, and to try out new roles that might suit them better. A mentor has the power to remedy this problem before it even begins. By encouraging their mentees to speak up, ask questions, and take risks, mentors teach mentees to mold their own reputations. Their extensive years working in business also means they can smooth the road by helping mentees understand organizational rules, culture, and protocols.
New employees need a healthy dose of positive reinforcement to build a sense of well being in the workplace. A strong mentor/mentee relationship will give it to them. Mentees will gain a better understanding of their own potential as well as what role they best fit into within their chosen organization. They’ll learn to know their own value and how that translates to having the confidence to create direction in their careers.
If this post resonated with you, check with your organization to see whether you are part of the MentorCloud network. If not, sign up for a demo here! Our vision is to create a mentoring planet in which true equality is achieved and hard work is rewarded, but it's only possible with your participation.