AWC PRESENTS: Building a Successful Mentor ProgramWith Leslie Sopko and Jane Baxter LynnSeptember 18, 2012
What we’ll discuss…What is a Mentor Program?Who is a mentor?Who is a mentee?Austin case studyWhat are the benefits of a Mentor Program?How does it work?Building a Mentor ProgramPromotional ToolsAWC Austin’s Mentor Program – successes, challenges and lessons learnedIn Summary
What is a Mentor Program?A Mentor Program is:• A teaching/learning process focused upon skills and professional development• A professional relationship to which a Mentor agrees to share their knowledge, skill and perspective with an interested Mentee• Members only benefit designed to encourage recruitment and retentionCan be tailored to meet needs of members. Includes:• One-on-one brainstorming and guidance• Ad hoc availability for input• Resume review and input• All of the above
Who is a Mentor?Anyone can be a mentor. Don’t sell yourself short!"The greatest good you can do for another is not just to share your riches but to reveal to him his own." - Benjamin Disraeli“We make a living by what we get, we make a life by what we give.” - Winston Churchill“Mentoring is a brain to pick, an ear to listen, and a push in the right direction." - John Crosby“Supporting other women in realizing their dreams is one of the greatest gifts we can give - paying it forward - but the real gift is in what we get back.” - Larissa Shapiro
Who is a Mentee?Everyone needs a mentor, not just students!“Mentoring got me out of my comfort zone and into thelearning zone which probably accelerated my learning by six months.”“My mentor made introductions and helped me build professional connections to other parts of the business.”“I am positive that I wouldn’t have landed this job without my mentor’s help crafting my elevator speech, resume and her great advice over coffee.”
Austin Case Study Jane Baxter Lynn (Mentor and Mentee)•Impact on own career•How it influenced my decision to join AWC•Findings from mentoring – personal reward andprofessional development
What are the Benefits?• Membership and organizational value• Opportunity for members to seek personalized career guidance• Enhance and/or make connections with members• Build leadership and coaching skills• Personal reward of shaping someone’s path to success
How does it work?• Define leadership within organization to manage program• Roles and responsibilities of mentors and mentees need to be clearly defined• Important to make the program attractive to both mentors and mentees• Offer a flexible program to meet needs of mentors and mentees• Mentors and mentees should choose the method and frequency of communication best suited to meet needs of the mentees
Building a Mentor ProgramIt takes structure and resources to build a MentorProgram. The program won’t run itself.Structure and Resources• Task force (minimum requirements)• Chair to oversee program implementation• Program Coordinator to manage mentor and mentee recruitment and promotions• Student Chapter Liaison to assist student population•Mentor/mentee request forms online•Survey or other methods to recruit mentors, buildrepository prior to program launch•Promotions – within organization and external
Promotional Tools How does your chapter promote events and programs? Join the conversation and make sure members know about the Mentor Program.• Web• Newsletters• AWC Chapter Online Forum• Professional development luncheons• Social media: • Facebook • Twitter • Feature blogs
Mentor Program Challenges• Mentor recruitment: • Limited engagement from professional members • Members do not think they are qualified • Determining each mentors’ level of commitment• Program awareness• Mentees - Professional members not taking advantage of the program as much as students are• Determining whether to continue or end a mentorship• Mentees being mindful of their mentor’s time and commitment• Other?
Mentor Program EnhancementsMentor Recruitment• Demystify mentorship for mentors and mentees• Help members understand they are qualified to serve: you don’t have to be an executive with 20+ years experience• Provide opportunity to serve on limited basis (ad hoc role, resume review) and ensure mentors decide on level of commitment up front• Enhance frequency of promotions• Encourage existing members to update their AWC profiles to reflect interest in mentoring• Include mentor “ask” in conjunction with membership renewal letters• Add field for Mentor Program participation in new member registration form
Mentor Program Enhancements cont.Program Awareness• Build upon existing web content• Social media platform for dialogue• Enhance promotions for mentoring AND being mentored• Dedicate one monthly luncheon each year to the Mentor Program (utilizing our own experts)• During speed networking luncheon, designate one station for mentoring• Bring mentors together quarterly to discuss what’s working and what could be better• Highlight that program is available at no additional charge for members
Mentor Program Enhancements cont.Students• Send professional members to meet with student chapters and provide on-site mentoring in groups• Develop Facebook page within Chapter Facebook for students• Mentor “Speed Dating” eventThe goal is to ensure all students are paired with mentors in a timely manner.
Mentor Program Enhancements cont.Mentorship Roles• New program guidelines outline the roles and responsibilities of mentors and mentees• Mentors required to make initial contact• Mentees required to keep the relationship going; however, mentors can and should reach out to their mentees from time to time• If there is no contact between a mentor and mentee for more than a month, it may be time to terminate the mentorship. This allows mentors to take on new mentees.
In Summary• Mentor Programs can be a major strategy for providing member value and building membership• Anyone can be a mentor• Everyone needs a mentor, not just students• Important to develop structure/guidelines and work with other volunteers to build and maintain a successful program• Utilize the free tools you already have to promote, promote, promote• Monitor success of program and continually find ways to enhance it.
Questions? Leslie Sopkoleslie.email@example.com Jane Baxter Lynn firstname.lastname@example.org