2020 saw many changes, and their effect on the human resources industry has been profound, leaving even the most experienced HR professional stumped and looking for guidance. Career development and continuing education courses are great options, but learning from fellow peers’ first-hand experience can be even more transformative. Enter mentorship. Whether you are interested in the role of mentor or mentee, both experiences present a chance to learn and grow. In honor of January being National Mentoring Month, we thought we’d explore some of the many reasons you should make mentorship a priority this year—and how DirectEmployers Members can take advantage of a structured mentorship program as part of their membership!

They say one should never stop learning, and we have to agree! Everyone’s experience is different and there are tidbits of that experience—lessons learned and best practices—that can be used to others’ advantage. There seems to be a myth in the business world that mentorship only benefits the mentee, but because industry trends are continually changing, you’d be surprised what fresh faces on the scene can teach even the most seasoned professional, resulting in growth for the mentor, as well. That’s what makes mentorship so great—two-way learning opportunities!

What’s in it for the Mentee

Whether you are new to the HR profession or simply looking for guidance in your career, being a mentee has its perks. As a mentee, you have the opportunity to learn from others’ experiences and mistakes, expand your personal and professional skillsets, uncover strengths and weaknesses, develop goals with a plan for achievement, obtain insight and advice on specific areas of interest, and can expand your network to form lasting friendships.

What’s in it for the Mentor

What better way to give back to the industry you’ve devoted your career to than to share your years of experience with others! As a mentor, by sharing your knowledge you will gain great satisfaction knowing that you helped a peer to grow within their own career. You can also use your mentor experience to develop your leadership skills, expand your resume, and similar to mentees, you too will develop long-lasting connections as your mentor-mentee relationship has the potential to transform into friendship centered around shared camaraderie, straight from the HR trenches.

But the benefits aren’t just personal. Studies have shown that mentoring can also be a benefit for your organization! In fact, 67% of businesses reported an increase in productivity due to mentoring, and 55% of businesses felt that mentoring had a positive impact on their profits.1

So, how common is mentorship? The answer is, pretty common! Research has shown that 71% of Fortune 500 companies have mentoring programs2, and they’ve proven to be pretty successful, too. In fact, of those with a mentor, 97% say they are valuable, and 55% believe mentoring can help them succeed.1 Recruitment, sourcing and OFCCP compliance aren’t always easy, so for our Members whose organizations do not have an already established mentorship program, we have created one as a perk of membership! Take a look at what one of our long-time Members and HR Manager for Ghafari Associates Kristin Garstka, PHR, SHRM-CP had to say about her experience as both a mentor and a mentee:

“Once a mentee, now a mentor, I have enjoyed seeing both sides of the fence when it comes to DirectEmployers’ Mentorship Program. It has given me the opportunity to meet new people, learn about how the intricacies of compliance can affect different companies, and how to provide better guidance to those who feel lost in a sea of regulations. I look forward to continuing my role in the mentorship program!”

Have we piqued your interest? Members are encouraged to learn more and complete the interest form for the next round of the program beginning in February in DE Connect. We look forward to matching more mentors and mentees and seeing what wonderful things will blossom from these new connections!

[1] “Facts & FAQ”. https://nationalmentoringday.org/facts-and-faq/. National Mentoring Day. Accessed 2021 January 12.

[2] “Mentoring Statistics: The Research You Need to Know”. https://www.guider-ai.com/blog/mentoring-statistics-the-research-you-need-to-know/. Guider. Accessed 2021 January 12.

Kacie Clark
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