Reasons to Start a Mentoring Program
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In many ways, your decision to start a mentoring program is one of the easiest you will ever make - and also one of the most important. A mentoring program is more than just a way to teach your employees new skills that more closely align with your long-term business objectives. It also has a tremendously positive impact on important qualities like employee satisfaction and retention, corporate culture and so much more. In truth, there are a wide range of different reasons why it is worth starting a mentoring program at your business that are more than worth exploring.
When You Start a Mentoring Program, You Show That You Care
Perhaps the most important reason why starting a mentoring program is a step worth taking is because it's an efficient, clear way to show your employees that you're actually invested in their success. Mentees will value the fact that they have someone to go to in order to get answers to important questions, to solve challenges that they're having a hard time with on their own or to ask for advice when times get tough. It's a way to instantly show every last person that you value the contribution only they can bring to the table and that you want to do whatever you can to make that contribution as strong as possible.
Mentoring Increases Employee Engagement
Another reason why starting a mentoring program is worthwhile is also incredibly simple: It has a positive impact on employee engagement almost immediately. Mentorship programs are powerful because they contribute to the development of a better, more intimately trained workforce.
One study conducted in 2013 revealed that people who have the opportunity to participate in a mentorship program have experienced higher than average levels of commitment to their employer. When you also consider the fact that not only do highly engaged businesses see a 10 percent increase in customer ratings and a 20 percent increase in sales, but also that 80 percent of employees say they would work more hours for an employer that was more empathetic to their needs. Then, you begin to get an idea of why employee engagement is so essential to your long-term success.
Mentorship Programs Help Both New and Existing Employees
Finally, mentorship programs are important because of the effect they have on your workforce in terms of the all-important "bigger picture." Not only do mentorship programs help retain quality employees because your existing employees become more engaged and invested, but it also makes your business more attractive to a higher quality of new recruits as well.
People are more likely to work for a company that shows it wants people to succeed. Offering a mentorship program shows your business is more than just another stepping stone in someone else's career and new applicants should see it that way, too. This allows you to attract a higher level of talent and retain them longer, thus going a long way to strengthen and empower your workforce for years to come. The productivity benefits of this alone are something you cannot put a price on.
In the end, a mentorship program is essentially an investment in the most important resource that your business has: Its employees. Not only are you strengthening your existing employees by teaching them the skills they need to better align their own output with your long-term business objectives, but you're also making yourself incredibly attractive to new candidates. In many ways, your decision to start a mentoring program is one of the few that you will ever make that has exclusively positive ramifications. It would truly be a shame to not take advantage of that fact.