This report has been compiled by. This report is intended for., and is written to show them the vast knowledge that we have received as a result of the mentorship program. It analyses the mentoring, coaching and counseling principles. Moreover it contains the mentoring program itself and reflections.
The primary purpose of this report was to expand our knowledge base on the business by learning through primary research and self learning.
In order to produce this report, sources of research were used. The primary sources consist of the mock interview and tape recordings while the secondary sources are referenced from the internet and major books. A diverse number of databases were also referred to for the research data required. Book references are listed in the bibliography.
1. 1 Theory
1. 1. 1 Definition of the term ‘ mentor’.
The word mentor has many definitions around the world. However, the basic definition is that of a wise and trusted advisor. One who is willing to meet others and pass on information (Pegg, 1999). Thus mentoring can be considered as a process by which information is passed on to future mentees thus developing them into better people.
Mentoring is an important aspect of modern culture and is practiced in many institutions and business organizations around the world. It is not only a tool by which to pass on knowledge to that person. Mentoring exists also to form a bond between the mentee and the mentor. Mentoring can be seen to have found its place in today’s modern society. Companies have started designing and implementing their own mentorship programs to help facilitate their employees. Institutions have already put in place the mentorship programs to help groom the 1st year students and help them to properly adapt to new environments. In this light mentorship can be seen to be a form of leadership. The mentorship process is important to modern society as it helps young aspiring individuals to grow in the light of people who they look up to. By doing so it helps them to succeed in all their endeavors.
1. 1. 2 Definition of the term coach,
Coaching is a process that enables learning and development to occur thus performance is seen to notably improve. Thus being a coach can be defined as one who primarily helps in the development of performance in a specific skill area. Often, people confuse the two terms, mentor and coach and it is usually seen that the two terms overlap. However coaches are seen to be more of strategists and planners who are essentially team builders.
1. 1. 3 Definition of the term counselor
A counselor is one who is mature, respects other people’s opinions, is willing to listen rather than to talk and uses the insights he gets from the person’s emotions and words to give advice.
Thus a counselor differs from a mentor in that he/she is rational and more objective. Thus the relationship with whoever is being counseled tends to be more professional than personal.
1. 1. 4 The difference between mentoring, coaching and counseling
Most people confuse the three terms and use them interchangeably. However, it can be clearly seen that the three carry different meanings. Coaching refers to the process that improves on performance by enabling learning and development to occur.
Counseling as described above is whereby one is provided professional advice based on the counselor’s insights. These insights are based on the person’s emotional state, words as well as appearance.
Mentoring is the process of sharing insights, advice or informational that is useful to the mentee. Mentorship is a process in which the insights are drawn from real life experiences and not random facts. Thus mentorship is seen to be all inclusive. This means that it entails coaching and counseling as well. It includes because it helps the individual’s performance in a particular area to improve. It also includes counseling as the individual’s free to seek help and advice from the mentor whenever possible
1. 2 Role of a mentor
The role of a mentor is to enable the mentee to become a better individual in the professional domain as well as their own personal world. By doing, the mentor inadvertently improves himself in the same manner due to insight and personal contact with the mentee.
Mentors have various duties. The primary aim of a mentor is to aid the mentee to reach a new level of personal and professional improvement thus the mentee is able to accomplish the tasks laid before him/her.
The mentee also has the task of ensuring that the mentee’s progress is consistent. This is accomplished but the mentor providing additional skills and techniques to aid in ensuring the mentees continued progress. The techniques should be based on real-life encounters s these help the mentee make a solid connection with how his/her mentor used the techniques.
Often the question is raised on the qualities that make a good mentor. This is normally raised by people all over the world who do not understand the principles of mentoring. Every individual is different by virtue of their personality. Thus the mentor and the mentee have to adapt to each others personalities in order to achieve proper results. Even though each mentor has different personalities, some notable aspects differentiate between a good mentor and a poor mentor. A good mentor should be capable and well experienced to aid the mentee in any sort of situation. The mentors should be able to encourage the mentees by constantly challenging them. The challenges should not discourage the mentees. Mentors must have a certain level of credibility both personally and professionally. Mentors should be able to encourage their mentees thereby enabling them to express their ideas more confidently. Also the mentor should learn to be versatile especially when engaging and challenging the mentees.
1. 3 Role of a mentee
A mentee’s main aim is to expand his knowledge and learn new skills. This is facilitated by the mentorship program whereby the mentee has the opportunity to get advice from someone who has much more experience is an invaluable opportunity. A mentee will find that mentors tend to make things much clearer than they were before. Due to the mentor-mentee relationship, the mentee is able to feel more secure as he knows the mentors is there to genuinely offer him help and is primarily there to help the mentee learn from his mistakes. Thus it can be said that this is grooming of the mentee in order to help him achieve specific goals or tasks. Thus it can be clearly seen that the mentee is learning new skills and gaining experience from the mentor. In general the mentee role is crucial as the mentor himself is able to learn more about his own mistakes from the mentee. Thus, it seems the mentor-mentee relationship is of a symbiotic nature in which each benefit the other.
1. 4 Relationship between the Mentor and the Mentee.
As mentioned above, the mentor-mentee relationship is a symbiotic relationship which benefits both of the people involved. Thus it is crucial for this relationship to be one where honesty and communication are freely exchanged between those involved. The mentor-mentee relationship is one based on trust and it is crucial that this trust is not compromised in any way by either of the parties. Breaking of this trust could result in the breakdown of the mentorship program and essentially the whole process could be discarded. To ensure this trust is not broken, it is essential that what is discussed between the mentor and the mentees stays purely between those involved in the discussion. Both the mentors and the mentees have to abide by this rule if the mentorship program is to succeed.
Communication is also an essential part of the relationship between the mentor and the mentee. Communication aids in the mentee being able to seek advice whenever he requires it from the mentor. It facilitates smooth passage of information and enables the mentor to be able to communicate freely to his/her mentees. The crucial role of communication in the mentorship program cannot be overemphasized. It is vital that communication be highly regarded as it ids through this that the mentor is able to spot weaknesses and guide the mentee to improving on the weaknesses. This way the mentee is able to acknowledge the mentor’s role and accepts his advice. Thus without proper communication, the mentorship program will be for naught and the mentor will have failed at his task.
In some cases there is mutual fallout between the two parties. In most cases, it is due to the lack of communication between the two parties. However, in some unrelated cases, it is noted that the mentorship process was difficult. Sometimes this is attributed to sexism and racism when it comes to the selection of the mentees. In other cases, it is attributed to the fact that the selected mentees are unwilling to learn anything from their mentor. This may be because the mentees do no respect the mentor or his employment position.
All in all, the relationship between the mentor and the mentee plays a crucial role in the mentorship process it is essential that trust be maintained throughout the process as well as communication. Honesty as well must be upheld. Moreover, the mentees must be willing to form relationships with the mentors for the process to be successful.
2. 0 Mentoring Process
2. 1 Pitch
Before I went before the students to present my pitch, I was very nervous as this was my first pitch. My content emphasized the strong role mentorship had in my life and the unbreakable bond that I had developed with my mentor. Though my voice was shaky and a bit weak, I felt proud because I had attracted three mentees. Reflecting back, the pitch was a good experience as it pointed out my weaknesses thus helped me grow just a bit more.
2. 2 Meetings
2. 2. 1 Progress
The first meeting was an informal face to face meeting so that we could properly get acquainted with each other. At this juncture, I should mention that the mentees were Niklas Kainrad, Alexander Kern and Yashar Berry. We mainly discussed about our pasts, our current selves, our future and what we aimed to achieve. Furthermore, we discussed the project, made detailed notes on what we aimed to achieved, proposed and clarified the time frame for which we were supposed to accomplish the set objectives and also set the times for regularly scheduled meetings.
During the meetings, I tried to play the role of a mentor by striving to listen rather than to talk. However the first two meetings I noted that I played the role of a coach more than a mentor. I constantly interrupted asking questions rather than listening. As the meetings passed, I noted that I settled more in to the role of a being a mentor.
It was really exciting because as the days passed, the more involved we became with further improving ourselves as individuals. We had the strong desire to grow into better people. The mentees were more involved when asked to reflect on their past and who they dream to be.
2. 2. 2 Mentees Development
a) Niklas Kainrad
During the first meting Niklas seemed mild-mannered, mature and confident in himself. When asked to think back on past experiences and say a personally affecting experience, he properly communicated his thoughts and his feelings. This was clearly seen as it affected his other mentees. However, it was noted throughout the meetings that though he was a cooperative team player, he could not be called upon to make critical decisions that the team required. Moreover, he was over-optimistic in some situations and at other times, he seemed preoccupied by his own thoughts especially during discussions.
Thus throughout the meetings we aimed at improving his strengths while limiting his weaknesses. Throughout the mentorship, I called upon Niklas to share his opinion especially when he seemed to be wandering off. This proved to be very effective as with time Niklas became less aware of what was keeping him pre-occupied and more involved in the class discussions. Thus Niklas who previously was unable to focus on discussions was now major participator and contributor to them.
Based on Niklas’ self perception details in the counseling report (appendix), t was concluded that due to his high maturity, Niklas was able to convince others to follow him. He was inspiring especially with his unique innovative ability. His cooperation skills likened him to working with colleagues who are genuinely interested in his ideas and opinions and with whom he can communicate effectively.
Due to his observable discipline, strategic weighing of decisions and making judgments, it was further concluded that his management style would be more of cooperating with his colleagues in finding the way forward or mapping the way himself.
As for his weaknesses, it was noted that though he paid little attention to all the specific details in the operations, this could easily be resolved by him working in harmony with someone who does. Thus his performance is likely to greatly improve.
Thus during the mentorship meetings, we worked on the above noted strengths so as to grow Niklas.
b) Alexander Kern.
During the face to face interview with Alexander, he was sent to take great acre especially when answering questions. He seemed to be mentally weighing the quality of his answer against the questions asked.
When asked what he thought of the other mentees opinions of certain issues, he carefully drew upon what the others had said and gave his opinions on the same. His slow but yet very effective method of thinking made him out to be a decisive decision maker.
The leadership qualities that he displayed during the meetings showed that he was a strategist taking into account all the details in a particular session. Often during the meetings it was seen that most of the other mentees consulted with Alexander before a decision was made. Thus throughout the meeting one strength that defined him was that he was reliable especially when called upon to quantify decisions.
Alexander throughout the duration of the meetings was noted to a key player especially when it came to making critical decisions. His major attribute that was clearly visible was the fact that he was a strategic leader.
However, he was not without weaknesses. His leadership qualities made him unsuitable for low key situations. Thus during the meetings he learnt how to keep a low profile when situations call for such action. This helped him to adapt to supportive and subordinate roles when necessary.
c) Yashar Berry
Yashar Berry struck me with her vocal confidence especially when evaluating her strengths and weaknesses. She did not seem ashamed of her weaknesses but rather showed the strong desire to learn ho to improve on them.
Over the past few weeks as we got to know more about each other, she showed real ingenuity when called upon to undertake certain tasks. Though this ingenuity earned her admiration from her other mentees, it was slow in showing. This somewhat affected her confidence in engaging in such crucial tasks. However, as time passed, her confidence in herself and her ingenuity grew.
She was generally a great contributor especially when during group discussions. Her attitude to tasks had a preference for that tasks that required innovativeness. Thus she was seen as someone who would be more suited to working in mentally challenging situations. This though largely attributed to her innovativeness was also due her above average qualities in self organization and control.
2. 2. 3 Methods of improvement
On the onset of the process, it was rather difficult to improve on the three different people as each their own individual weaknesses. However after thorough analysis, it became clear that Alexander’s weaknesses turned out to be Niklas’ strengths. Thus the two worked together during the meetings, often correcting each other and pointing out their weaknesses. This turned out to be a very effective method of improving themselves. Yashar Berry had limited weaknesses and these were resolved through group interventions during the meetings. The teamwork tasks greatly improved the individual’s capability to work in a team.
The meetings were not held on a daily basis. Therefore, as a method for improvement the mentees were required to spend the non-meeting days reflecting personally on themselves and their weaknesses. Particularly, we agreed that the reflection sessions’ focus would be on how to improve on the weakness that each individual had. The conclusions of the personal reflections were then presented to the group during the meeting sessions.
We also developed various strategies that were aimed to bolster their performance during the interviews. Thus through constant analysis and motivation the three were able to help each other grow.
2. 3 Evaluation and conclusion
Reflecting back on the whole process and its effect on the mentees, it can be concluded that the overall impact it had on them ws massive. All three mentees showed more determination to better themselves both professionally and personally. The serious attitude exhibited by all of the showed the real determination to succeed. They took into account all the mentorship knowledge that they had learned during the duration of the mentorship program and were keen to utilize it in the proper manner. On A more personal case, I, as the mentor, have gained valuable knowledge in identifying the personality characteristics of the different individuals. I have also learnt how to approach these case characteristics each in its own manner and properly help the individual to grow. Therefore, I have gained insight into the proper strategies to be used when evaluating the individual and helping him improve himself.
2. 4 Comparison and mock interview.
In the next session, the performance of mentees shall be evaluated based on how well they performed in the mock and real interviews. The real interview is thus the true evaluator of the total effectiveness of the process.
2. 4. 1 Evaluation of Niklas
Niklas was very striking in terms of dressing during both of the interviews. His vocal strength was strong and depicted open body language. His answers to the questions that were asked proved satisfying. He showed real confidence in his answers and spoke confidently throughout the interview.
However, not both interviews were conducted without mistakes. When faced with questions asking him to explain how he would undertake a particular task, it was noted that he continuously ignored the minor crucial details. His arguments to the questions though satisfying were not without flaws. He generally answered the questions but there was hesitation on his part to divulge greater details especially when he was asked to clarify on given points.
He showed great improvement during the real interview. It was clear that he had worked on his mistakes and improved on the weaknesses. His answers were now clearer and he did not hesitate to divulge information when asked to clarify on unclear points.
2. 4. 2 Evaluation of Alexander Kern
Alexander’s mock interview showed that he had taken what he had learnt during the mentorship program and properly implemented it to improving his behavior. In terms of his oral language he was able to present strong answers in a very convincing manner. His answers still showed that he had taken great care on consideration of the question. Though the speed of his answers was still very slow, it was clear that he had improved greatly since entering the mentorship program. His calm disposition when faced with many questions displayed his oozing confidence when placed on the spot.
During the real interview, it was noted that Alexander had noted his mistakes made during the mock interview and made an effort to correct them. The rate of delivery of his answers was speedy and they still contained as much depth as the mock interview answers. Moreover, it was impressive that he showed he could answer even the most unexpected of questions.
2. 4. 2 Evaluation of Yashar Berry.
Yashar Berry was very impressive at both the interviews. Her limited flaws that she had displayed early were now completely erased. Her smooth manner of talking, the ease with which she answered questions and the ingenuity that she displayed all showed that she had garnered a lot of experience from the mentorship program.
2. 5 Summary.
As a summary of the real interview, which is the final evaluation of the mentor’s mentoring skills, it was clear that the mentees had listened carefully to the mentors, taken their advice and implemented it properly. They remembered the basic rules which they displayed in the interview.
On terms of performance, it was rather clear that Yashar performed more professionally than the other two. It was thus clear that Yashar had carefully listened to what the mentors had commented on and worked on it thereby improving herself professionally.
In the case of Alexander, it was clear that with a little pressure he could be pushed to succeed. He showed his decision-making prowess when called upon. Niklas also exhibited marked improvement especially in his concentration. He paid little attention to his own personal interests and concentrated completely on the interview.
2. 6 Reflection on my own personal performance
After analyzing the performance of my three mentees, I reflected on my own personal performance and progression. I identified three major things that I would have to change given the opportunity to take part in the mentorship experience again. First, I will have to be more observant of how my mentees present themselves. Niklas was unable to give decisive answers during the mock interview. I, as the mentor, should have noted this and worked on it with him.
Secondly, though the mentees showed marked improvement, some still exhibited difficulties when answering the questions. Given the opportunity to take part in the mentorship program once more, I will undertake to simulate real life situations with my mentees so as to avoid this.
2. 7 Conclusion.
The mentorship program was not only a wonderful experience for the mentees. it proved to be a worthwhile experience for me too. Through sharing and working together to eliminate each others weaknesses, it was shown that the mentees showed marked improvement especially in how they present themselves professionally.
Helping others find their own weaknesses as well as my own turned out to be an invaluable experience for me. It also showed that people can truly aim higher if they have a common goal and a person who is willing to mentor them and assist them into achieving that goal.
2. 8 Recommendations.
The mentorship program in the EBS is truly an invaluable source of knowledge. One gets to learn more about him/her, the opportunity to identify their weakness and to work on improving them. The pitching of the program is also very essential as it gives the mentees a positive feel about the program.
With all the above said, I would thus like to recommend that the mentorship program be carried over into the other years. This would enable mentors to keep in touch with their mentees thus the bonds are not broken after the mentorship program is finished.
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