When hearing about the great success stories in sports, business, and life, almost all have the same storyline. An individual with a solid drive to accomplish something benefits exponentially from the help of a beloved mentor in their life. The mentors in these stories are critical in lining up opportunities for our heroes. They often ensure that their talent is seen and cultivated even before they become great successes. We see this in the stories of Michael Jordan and Phil Jackson, Tim Cook, Steve Jobs, and many more.
Mentorship relationships are rewarding for the young generation and a great source of fulfillment for the mentors. While mentorship can be simply a close bond between two individuals in different parts of their careers, many trades formally utilize this to educate and bring up new workers in their field. Even for jobs that don’t use a formal mentorship model, this type of hands-on training can be rewarding for everyone involved and will help talent grow from within a company.
Mentorships As Education
In traditional vocations, a mentor takes on an apprentice who works directly under them to gain knowledge and experience from the master. While most fields have moved away from this type of workforce training, many trade jobs still operate under the apprenticeship model or something similar. This teaching style can be helpful even after someone has completed college or licensure in a field. It allows the less experienced worker to gain valuable experience and avoid some of the mistakes their mentor made while coming up in the industry.
Today, a variety of trades still use the apprenticeship model to train those in their field, including:
- Construction workers
- HVAC technicians
- Tattoo artists
- Animal trainers
Mentorships can be formal or informal and often happen organically when someone sees potential in an eager individual to join their field. For example, suppose you have a senior employee who wants to be more hands-on in training your newer hires. In that case, a mentorship program may be perfect for cultivating talent and helping newer team members accelerate their success within your company.
Encourage Mentorship At Your Company
Even if you are not in an industry that uses formal apprenticeships, you can still take parts of this model and use it for in-house training of employees. The key factors that create a positive mentorship experience include:
- Choosing the right mentor – A good mentor should be experienced and excited to teach and be patient with newcomers in their field. In addition, they should be someone who inspires and takes an interest in individuals to help them grow in a positive environment.
- Selecting self-disciplined mentees – Mentorships are most beneficial to driven, self-disciplined individuals who want to become successful. Those not eager to learn will waste the training and likely frustrate your chosen mentor.
- Risk-free learning – One of the critical elements of mentorship is allowing mistakes to happen risk-free. The mentee will make errors and should be allowed to work in an environment that is low-impact on your company and not condemned by their mentor.
Mentorships bring life into your workers’ careers and encourage a sense of personal fulfillment that creates loyal and happy employees. There are few greater joys than helping raise someone and watching them succeed under your guidance – that’s why these relationships are paramount in Eckerd Connects’ programs. If you can cultivate a mentor relationship with someone, it is an experience worth having in your life.
Contact one of our local programs to learn how you may become a mentor in your region: https://eckerd.org/find-programs/