McCarthy Mentoring consults to government, not for profit and corporate organisations on the design and delivery of successful mentoring programs.

Based on sound educational practice, research and extensive experience, we recommend tailored initiatives to meet key professional development objectives of the program including talent management, retention, diversity and engagement.

Training workshops

McCarthy Mentoring offers a customised service that ensures mentors and mentees are briefed and trained appropriately to provide the best outcome for the organisation. To ensure people feel excited and confident in their roles as mentors and mentees we offer:

  • ‘How to be an effective mentee’ This is an interactive and practical presentation with a focus on the role of a mentee, insights on best practice and how to get the most out of the relationship.
  • ‘How to be a valuable mentor’. This includes objectives of the mentoring relationship, roles and responsibilities, common questions, case study analysis as well as logistics and ethical boundaries.


Best practice

Mentoring can be a powerful professional development tool to drive change, engage your staff and develop your leaders but it has to be done well. Following best practice guidelines will help to achieve an effective program.

Mccarthy Mentoring draws on our research Managing Power, People and My Career and experience to recommend best practice guidelines for mentees and mentors during the mentoring relationship as well as the design of an effective successful program.

Here are our top tips in starting a mentoring program:

1. Develop a mentoring culture and identify champions

Mentoring programs are most successful in organisations which foster a development culture and whose leaders are champions of mentoring. Mentees must feel participation is highly valued by the organisation and it is a reward and recognition program to aspire towards rather than a remedial initiative.

2. Consider qualities of mentors and mentees

Consider the qualities of the participants chosen and train them to get the most out of the relationship. Mentors need to be good listeners, encourage trust and be generous in sharing their experiences. Great mentors stretch and challenge. Mentees need to take initiative, be open and drive the relationship.

3. Match carefully

The match is arguably the most crucial element of success. It needs to be based on the mentees goals, ambitions, expectations as well as experience. Where possible mentors should be outside of current network or function area to bring fresh perspectives and encourage discussions that they can’t have with their manager or colleagues. Both have to be committed to the relationship and there needs to be mutual respect.

4. Clarify purpose and expectations

The program needs to be formalised with all parties understanding the purpose, expectations and goals of the program. Establish clear objectives and guidelines at the beginning and ensure they are well communicated. Set a clear timeframe for the program to keep participants focused and outcomes can be assessed.

5. Evaluate

Measure and evaluate the effectiveness of the mentoring program against the goals of the program and key business performance indicators. Communicate the results to senior leadership, participants, managers and mentors.