Remote work has been a saving grace for the digital world throughout the pandemic. It has offered incredible flexibility, even though it has its challenges. But are the benefits of the Work from Home (WFH) model enough to overlook its drawbacks? Perhaps not.
For early-career employees, it is critical to have casual work conversations. They are responsible for contributing to the development of feedback mechanisms, norms, relationship building, and other important social cues in an organization. The lack of these elements poses a considerable challenge. It makes it difficult for employees to learn from the best practices and succeed in their careers when they have never stepped foot in an office environment. Employees must build professional relationships that will be critical for their advancement and survival in a company, which they cannot do while working from home.
With work from home still in effect for most employees worldwide, companies are finding it harder and harder to form a workplace culture and be diverse in their hiring practices amid a pandemic. However, there is a solution in online mentoring software. Online mentoring software helps retain the attention of the hybrid and remote workforce, helping them build better connections with those they work with, strengthening their company culture, and making the organization more inclusive to them and all their struggles. As more and more businesses decide for employees to continue WFH, mentorship programs must follow suit. This is a big challenge for HR teams and business leaders who create substance-filled and tangible working relationships between mentors and mentees. These relationships are vital as they will help balance in-person and digital communication to make sure that new hires and mentees get the necessary support for career progression at the right time.
Employee Engagement and Retention
When employees feel a lack of career development, poor management, and burnout, they are more likely to leave their jobs. The cause is because they have not had a chance to connect to their place of work in a meaningful way to want to stay. Mentorship can help solve the lack of employee engagement and help retain employees in the workplace. Over 85 percent of employees on a global scale are either not engaged or feel actively disengaged at their place of work. As most companies continue working from home, it has become even more difficult for employees to feel connected and motivated to stay at their jobs rather than seek out other job opportunities. Mentors help by keeping their mentees engaged in the business.
Researchers David Clutterbuck and David Megginson spent decades trying to understand what makes for effective mentoring programs. They found that building rapport and creating clarity of purpose for employees is the essential foundation.
If you as an organization want your mentorship program to be truly transformative for your employees rather than just another organizational responsibility, you must build rapport. It is particularly challenging to do in a virtual world. Rapport creates mutual trust and respect and a shared understanding of one’s colleagues’ values and perspectives to make way for solid communication. This human connection might not seem like a lot to many companies, but it is critical to retain employees who feel their workplace underrepresents them.
If you wish to build a rapport with your new and old hires alike, it might be time to invest in a more holistic mentoring approach by allowing mentors and mentees to discuss things other than their work. In this way, mentors and mentees will be able to form a much deeper human connection with one another, giving them a chance to connect more deeply with their jobs and feel more satisfied working.
Clarity of Purpose
It is essential to instill a clear sense of purpose in your mentors and mentees to solidify their relationships, excitement, and momentum. Without clarity of purpose, mentors and mentees can still foster a friendship, but it will not help the mentees reach their professional goals. To effectively do this, a series of steps can be taken.
Humans are storytellers by nature. They need to narrate their lives’ events to make sense of them. Encourage your mentors and mentees to reiterate how far they have come from where they started and how close they are to reaching their goals. It will help build resilience and encourage them to persevere through tough workplace challenges.
Additionally, if your business doesn’t have an online presence, it might be time to form one. If it does, post your employees’ wins. The fact that employees haven’t met their coworkers in person shouldn’t be why they are not hyped up. It will go a long way in making online mentorship program software more successful.
If you have questions regarding online mentorship programs and how they can help you retain your employees, reach out to our mentorship software experts at MentorCloud for guidance.