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Mentoring groups rings--nrnw version

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  • 1. An Alternative to One on One Mentoring for the Navy Region Northwest
  • 2.
    • What are mentoring groups?
    • Structuring mentoring groups
    • Training
    • Measuring Success
    • Pointers for Managing the Process
    • Potential Barriers to Success
    • What Can Mentoring Groups do for the Navy Region Northwest and the Leadership Development Program Participants?
  • 3.
    • Mentoring relationships that include one-two mentor(s) and 6-12 protégés
    • Intended to facilitate career development and retention for high performing employees
    • May target certain groups of employees, such as new hires or under-represented groups
    • Also called mentoring rings or mentoring circles
    • Group meets once a month for 2-3 hours
    • Protégés are responsible for coordinating meetings and setting agendas; mentors are responsible for facilitating directed discussions and providing advice and guidance.
  • 4.
    • Best if structured to focus in a particular area, like leadership development, work/life balance, career development, etc.
      • Narrowing the scope balances out the tendency of groups to expand scope when each member has his/her own specific goals for the relationship
    • Important to include only high performers
      • More work than 1:1 mentoring, administratively and in terms of time
        • Meetings have to be longer in order to include input from all members of the group
        • Scheduling meetings and establishing agendas can be complicated due to the number of people involved
  • 5.
    • Consider mixing female, minority and majority males as equally as possible, in order to foster diversity and inclusion.
    • Recommend meeting once per month
    • Recommend groups of 8-10
      • Maximizes collective brainstorming and problem solving: big enough to include several perspectives and small enough to get participation from all members
    • Recommend structuring the relationships for durations of 6-12 months
      • A year may be too much commitment for participants, especially the first time but will depend on the organization
      • It can be challenging to maintain momentum for longer than 6 months with that many people so focus on this will be key
  • 6.
    • Members may have slightly different goals for the relationship, but there should be a common goal or theme for the group
      • At least establish specific themes or topics for each meeting
      • Keeps the team together
      • Helps members choose the mentoring ring that meets their needs
    • The team of protégés needs to drive the agenda, scheduling, and meeting facilitation
      • Takes some of the burden off mentors, who have already made a big commitment
      • Provides protégés opportunities to practice leadership, teamwork, and mutual accountability
  • 7.
    • Focus of meetings should be on group discussions
      • Meetings should not be set up as classroom situations in which mentors lecture on a given topic
    • All members required to set goals at the beginning and provide accountability reports to other members at each meeting
      • Outside 1:1 discussions should be discouraged because they threaten confidentiality and trust and can impose an additional burden on the mentor
    • Confidentiality is of utmost importance
      • For the relationship to be successful, members must be able to trust one another enough to give goal progress reports and discuss personal issues or challenges openly
  • 8.
    • Should occur at the outset of the relationship
    • Should include the same information provided to mentors and protégés for traditional 1:1 mentoring relationships
      • Process, structure, timelines
      • Goals, responsibilities for each party, how success is measured, etc.
    • Should be augmented by an additional section stressing group dynamics, group facilitation, and mutual accountability
  • 9.
    • Use the same criteria we would use for 1:1 mentoring
    • Use both general metrics and observable changes in the protégés
    • General metrics:
      • Retention
      • Promotions
    • Changes in protégés:
      • Network expansion
      • Confidence
      • Job satisfaction
      • Engagement
  • 10.
    • Ideally, compare pre/post measurements rather than gauging perceived change after the fact
      • Self-reported progress (questionnaire format) is great, but more powerful if comparing baselines to post-experience evaluations
    • In the case of self-reported progress, everyone is measured on different things because they each had individual goals
      • This is a good reason to combine self-reported progress with metrics like retention and promotion
    • Self-reported progress provides richer information and tends to make a stronger case for continuing the mentoring program than basic metrics alone.
  • 11.
    • Often protégés will rotate leadership for agenda setting, scheduling meetings, and meeting facilitation
      • The tag team approach to meeting facilitation can be very effective
      • It’s good practice
      • The mentor’s role is to oversee overall group dynamics and provide content expertise and advice during meetings only; not to facilitate the meeting itself, in terms of progressing through an agenda
    • Sometimes the protégé group will meet between meetings with the mentor; that’s ok
  • 12.
    • Consider mixing functions within groups
      • To add diversity
      • Because it will be logistically difficult not to
    • However, preferable not to combine multiple levels within the protégé group
      • Try to keep all protégés within a couple of levels of one another
    • No other similarities are crucial; in fact, a mix of technical and non-technical, verbal and quantitative, etc. is preferable
      • Studies show a diverse mentoring group leads to more career advancement for underrepresented groups
      • The mix will make the group harder to manage, and potentially volatile, but the end result will be better!
  • 13.
    • Start with a REALLY special group of people that you can’t afford to lose
      • Highlights the business case for mentoring
      • Makes success more visible
    • Usually companies offer one or the other, but consider offering a choice between group mentoring and traditional, one on one mentoring
      • Depending on the protégé's needs, different programs work well in different situations
  • 14.
    • Risk to Confidentiality
      • Important for the relationship to have a positive impact, but difficult to maintain in groups
    • Maintaining Independence from Reporting Relationships and Work Teams
      • Logistically difficult to draw all members from different teams and sections of the org chart
        • Many members on the team
    • Social Loafing
      • Likely in any group setting
      • Part of the reason to include only top performers
      • Build in accountability with progress reports
  • 15.
    • Time frame too long (a year may be too long)
    • Too loosely structured; protégés don’t have specific goals
    • Poor facilitation; training incomplete or protégés not well-selected
    • Confidentiality/trust broken
    • No group rules established ahead of time
    • Participants that don’t like the group process; be careful to select for this
      • One good reason to offer both group and 1:1 mentoring
  • 16. Improve NRNW problem solving, creativity, and effectiveness Provide career direction and planning for high performing Total Force Personnel Provide networking and advancement opportunities Improve diversity at increasingly higher levels of the organization Improve retention of high performing personnel
  • 17.
    • Bridget Bakken, Lead Product Planner, US-HR Mgmt & Leadership Development, Microsoft Corporation, personal interview, August 6, 2001.
    • Linda Phillips-Jones, Ph.D., Consulting Psychologist, The Mentoring Group, Grass Valley, CA, teleconference interview, August 13, 2001.
    • Mentoring, Beverly Ayea and Devon Scheef, Info-Line, ASTD, April, 2000.

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