Dexus Workplace speaks to Sophie McCarthy about the evidence behind the benefits of mentoring for organisations and their staff.
Mentoring is one of the most positive and rewarding types of relationships, and one that a growing number of companies are seeking to incorporate into their workplaces.
“There’s a lot of evidence that shows that people who are well mentored enjoy their careers more, are promoted more quickly and earn a higher salary,’’ says the founder and Executive Director of McCarthy Mentoring, Sophie McCarthy.
Organisations also recognise the fostering of a mentoring culture is “extremely useful to develop, retain and engage staff”, she says.
McCarthy says mentoring programs in organisations are a cost-effective way to “really help people think much more clearly about their careers, give them more confidence and help them perform at their best.”
“A lot of people look back nostalgically and think that there was a time when this happened more organically,” she says.
But with people changing jobs on a more regular basis and the pace of change quicker than ever before, McCarthy says structured mentoring programs are increasingly being adopted by organisations.
Structuring an offline relationship
“Like any program, it needs structure, it needs a purpose, it needs objectives, it needs to be communicated well to all parties, and there needs to be some resources allocated to it to help people get the most out of that relationship,” says McCarthy, whose business has worked with Federal and State government agencies and bodies, ASX-listed companies and not-for-profit organisations.
Among the key benefits of a work-related mentoring relationship is that it allows people to discuss issues relating to their career development that are important to them and which they may consider normally off-limits.
“They have someone to discuss things with confidentially and it’s an offline relationship,” she says.