Workplace mentoring workshops are wellness workshops promoted in the workplace to train employees by improving their skills and knowledge. This can help them to perform better. Mentoring is an opportunity that prepares newly hired workers to understand workplace operations and for existing employees to have a chance to improve and become new leaders.
Existing managers of each department can play the role of a mentor who can assist and develop the leadership skills of existing staff members. However, an external expert could also be hired to perform the same mentoring workshop. This is generally not recommended since the external expert would not be familiar with the company’s culture on a deeper level. Though external help can train leaders into becoming better mentors.
With appropriate training and mentoring, the work quality of the employees will improve over time. A mentoring workshop can help to identify the strengths and weaknesses of employees. Employees can emphasise their strengths and continue working on their weaknesses. Along with that, management is able to communicate the future expectation from the employees since they could be future leaders. Employees will have a chance to prove themselves during the workplace mentoring workshops and apply for promotions which would give them a sense of their career development.
Effective Design of Mentoring Workshops
The success of a mentoring workshop will highly depend on how well the workshop is planned and prepared. In the designing stage, the structure of the mentoring workshop will have to consider all the phases mentees will have to go through. The topics will also need to be considered carefully to ensure they are relevant to current issues. One of the best ways to design an effective mentoring workshop is to learn from past mentoring workshops. This can help to avoid mistakes and errors that occurred before. The upcoming mentoring workshop will have fewer flaws and be successful.
A number of factors will have to be considered when preparing and planning the mentoring workshop. Based on the number of participants, the plan could be individual-based or team-focused. Depending on the nature of the mentoring workshop, one-on-one mentoring could be provided or general mentoring to a group of individuals at the same time. Allocation of the resources, such as time and money, needs to be adequate to ensure the mentoring process has all the necessary resources.
Tools and Techniques
A range of tools and techniques can be used to make mentoring workshops more effective. The use of technology in the mentoring workshops gives an edge. Presentation slides shared through the projector can make the mentoring workshops more engaging and interesting. The mentor would have to ensure the presentation is not boring with simple, mundane, written words on every slide. Each slide would need to have a balance of written words and visual images that support the topic being discussed. Short videos can also be used to have a variety of mediums to communicate with the mentees.
Brainstorming is a technique widely used to come up with new ideas and is a great way to challenge mentees to think outside the box. This technique can be used by the mentor during the mentoring workshop to improve employees’ thinking and idea-generation abilities.
Other tools would include the use of a reflective journal. Mentees can take notes in their reflective journals and identify what they learned in each session, what was important, and what could be improved. This also allows mentees to write down their feelings about the workshop and give feedback for future improvement.
Towards the end of the workplace mentoring workshop, an evaluation stage takes place. The evaluation will help to identify the successes of the workshop and employees’ achievements through the workshop. A test can be conducted towards the end of the workshop to measure the success of the employees by measuring the outcomes with predetermined KPIs.
A workplace mentoring workshop can be a disaster if the mentor does not prepare well. This can be in the form of having an unstructured agenda and heavily relying on improvisation. It is expected from the mentor to double-check the plan with management, and the CEO, to ensure the executed workshop will yield promising results.
Another common challenge is having extremely high expectations from the workshop. As well as the pressure to be perfect. The mentees should not be expected to be perfect or perform at their optimal after the workshop. Realistic expectations and key performance indicators are likely set in place. This allows employees to learn and develop at a reasonable pace, giving them enough time to process and apply the learned information in the real world.
Finally, the workplace mentoring workshop may miss out on the company values. The mentor would have to ensure the company values are well-considered in the workshop. The topics and skills being taught need to reflect the values of the company. Otherwise, the absence of company values may diminish the impact of the mentoring workshop.