top of page

The Importance of the Mentor

The first assignment given to me as a young executive with General Motors was to attach myself to a mentor. This was needed so I could do the following;

  1. Learn the culture of the organization.

  2. Understand my role and responsibilities.

  3. Know the expectations of the senior leaders.

  4. Know how to position myself for promotion.

  5. Learn what is and is not appropriate in my business relationships.

Each month I would meet with my mentor who would help me learn what it meant to be an outstanding employee. I was also taught how to appreciate the opportunities given to me. Mentorship is needed in corporate America today because many employees are hired without a foundation in professional development. They do not know how to talk professionally, dress professionally, demonstrate professional conduct, and lead with professional character. The lack of professional mentoring programs in business results in the following:

  1. Reduces the potential of employees to be promoted or move into positions of authority, supporting the greatest need.

  2. Creates voids in leadership within the organization.

  3. Causes the organization to look outside the organization for successors.

  4. Reduces operating efficiency in organizations and departments.

  5. Causes top talent to look for other opportunities outside the organization.

  6. Makes employees feel devalued by lack of professional investment.

  7. Reduces the input needed for personal and professional maturity.

Companies that do not create mentorship programs also shorten the life of the organization. Company doors will close if there is no one to provide leadership and strategic planning. It is imperative that new employees be directed to mentors to assist them in becoming acclimated to the company, co-workers, leadership team, and resources of the organization. This is beyond the normal onboarding process. This is a continuous process aimed at building the employee and preparing them to move within the company. A strong mentoring program also works to retain top talent in key positions. The following are key steps in creating a mentorship program in your company.

  1. Create a mentoring curriculum that focuses on the mission, vision, and values of your organization. This helps to build the corporate mindset of the employee.

  2. Build a list of mentors within the organization. Every employee is not meant to mentor. Look for employees willing to devote the time, who are seasoned with the company's growth and history.

  3. Identify leadership potential and mandate them to mentoring programs.

  4. Make sure the mentors meet regularly with their mentees and provide reports to leadership.

  5. Limit the mentorship program to one year, then quarterly follow-up.

  6. Reward employees for completing mentorship programs and acknowledge them accordingly.

  7. Ensure the program will be ongoing and a top priority/initiative in the strategic planning of the organization.

Companies are taking uncalculated measures for survival, not just for financial reasons, but for lack of people available to help companies think through their challenges, avoiding panic, and disruption.

6 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page