Mentoring is a very important part of an organization. A mentor helps to integrate the new members into the team. They are sources of information for the new members. Integrating new members into the team quickly will help to keep retention high on the team. To integrate the members faster you can have the mentee choose a mentor or if they do not know a mentor then they will be paired with one. Making sure every new member has a mentor is key to the success of the mentoring program.
The mentor will be required to work with the mentee on a weekly basis. The main role of the mentor is to help the younger member develop technical and personal skills. The mentor will show the mentee how to accomplish certain tasks then allow the mentee to do the task after that. The mentor should allow the mentee to work and make mistakes on their own to build confidence and pride in workmanship. The goals of the mentor are to:
- Provide support for new members
- Teach the procedures of the team
- Contact mentee for work days
- Help the mentee find an area of interest
- Introduce mentee to other members of the team
- Provide help with tasks assigned to mentee
- Help boost self esteem and ownership in the project
- Periodically assess the progress of the mentee
The mentor achieves these goals by putting together a plan for the mentee. First on the plan would be to introduce the mentee to the entire system (vehicle, product, etc.) and start to teach them about the project and its components. The next step is to find out the most interesting part of the project to the mentee. Since many of the mentees are overwhelmed with the project at first and often do not know what they want to work on, the mentor can put together an assignment that is in the career path of the mentee.
From the first day that the mentor and mentee are paired up the mentor needs to be teaching the documentation and communication procedures of the team. The mentor needs to make sure the mentee understands the importance of documentation and organization of the team. Mentees need to be comfortable using the documentation systems and have the ability to look through the archives that the team has developed.
In meetings the mentor should help to get comments from the mentee so that they start to feel comfortable taking in front of the group. One way of encouraging this is a technique is to have the mentor and mentees give a presentation on their part of the project during a meeting. The presentation would be over what they did since the last time they gave a speech and what ways they are improving the team. By talking in front of people and getting to know everyone the level of teaming and self esteem of the mentee should rise.
Mentees will also have requirements on them. The mentee is responsible for taking the time to work with and understand what the mentor is explaining. The mentee is required to:
- Has to want to be taught
- Must work to gain skills, knowledge and abilities
- Know and discuss their needs and objectives with the mentor
- Must take responsibility for their goals and objectives
- Must be able to accept feedback and look at a situation from another´s perspective
- Must be willing to try new things
- Has to periodically assess the progress of the program and know when help is needed