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Making a Mentoring Relationship Work: What is Required for Organizational Success



Mentoring programs in organizations can be helpful in improving performance and transferring knowledge, and lead to higher job satisfaction and retention of employees, resulting in higher business productivity. This research will consider the history of the mentoring and its use in organizations to increase knowledge and improve performance. This research discusses why mentoring works through the theory of social learning and explores methods to use in matching individuals for a successful mentoring relationship.
Making a Mentoring Relationship Work: What is Required for
Organizational Success
Lisa Kahle-Piasecki
University of Toledo
Mentoring programs in organizations can be helpful in improving performance and transferring
knowledge, and lead to higher job satisfaction and retention of employees, resulting in higher business
productivity. This research will consider the history of the mentoring and its use in organizations to
increase knowledge and improve performance. This research discusses why mentoring works through the
theory of social learning and explores methods to use in matching individuals for a successful mentoring
In the workplace, relationships naturally develop between co-workers, clients, supervisors, and
subordinates. Relationships at work can be both productive and unproductive, filled with animosity or
admiration, and can foster friendships that go beyond the workplace lasting long into other careers and
employers. One type of relationship that can be very beneficial in the workplace, even advancing an
individual’s career, is the mentoring relationship. The mentoring relationship between a mentor - a more
experienced employee - and mentee can provide both parties benefits offering support and knowledge in
performing a job, increased admiration in the office, and navigating the politics of an organization. The
benefits usually relate to an increase in performance. This relationship, although usually positive, is not
without some pitfalls and risks. A mentoring relationship can sometimes develop into a negative situation
with a mentor possibly sabotaging a mentee or not providing the necessary career support. If a business is
considering establishing a mentoring program or if the business currently has a mentoring program,
legitimate concerns can be diminished if a screening, formal training and matching program is put in
place to develop the mentoring relationship. The objective of a business mentoring program is to make a
successful match between a mentor and mentee in order to achieve higher productivity with knowledge
transfer, retention, and greater job satisfaction.
This research will consider the history of mentoring and its use in apprenticeship programs and for
teacher retention as examples of mentoring programs commonly used for increasing knowledge and job
support. It will then apply the concept to businesses for use as a performance intervention, distinguishing
between formal and informal mentoring programs and consider why mentoring works by examining the
idea of social learning. Finally, the research will explore the problem in business mentoring relationships
of unsuccessful pairing of mentors and mentees, and address factors that may contribute to a successful
mentoring relationship.
46 Journal of Applied Business and Economics vol. 12(1) 2011
History of Mentoring
The concepts of mentoring and formal mentor programs are familiar to many in educational
institutions and apprenticeship programs. Mentoring programs exist for new teachers, youth-at-risk, and
in the higher education setting for faculty and students. The role of formal mentor programs in business
organizations, however, is not as common as it is in education. A review of the literature shows studies on
mentoring in the workplace are mostly limited to the past 25 years. The fact that mentoring is considered
an innovation in performance improvement in organizations (Murray, 2006), suggests that mentoring
programs are fairly new in the workplace.
The word mentor, according to Webster’s New World College Dictionary (2002), is defined as “a
wise, loyal advisor, a teacher or coach.” It has its origins in Greek Mythology, specifically, Homer’s the
Odyssey. King Odysseus, before leaving to fight in the Trojan War (a ten-year battle), entrusts his older
friend Mentor to teach and educate his son, Telemachus (Gentry, Weber, & Sadri, 2008). In Greek, the
word probably meant advisor and comes from the Indo-European root – men, meaning, “to think” (The
Mentor: An Academic Advising Journal). The word mentor used today usually means, a one-to-one
relationship between an experienced person and a less experienced person (Okurame & Balogun, 2005).
A mentoring relationship is also defined as, “a deliberate pairing of a more skilled or experienced person
with a lesser skilled or experienced one, with the agreed-upon goal of having the lesser skilled person
grow and develop specific competencies (Murray, 2006).” This definition allows for the possibility that a
mentor may be younger than a mentee.
Before exploring the role mentoring plays in business organizations and the problem of unsuccessfully
matching mentors and mentees, we should consider the historical uses of the concept in apprenticeship
programs and teacher retention programs. Both of these areas have utilized the mentoring concept for
learning and job support.
Apprenticeship programs as a method for training youth in jobs have existed formally since the post-
World War II period. Apprenticeship is defined by Hamilton & Hamilton (1992), as activities that one
engages in under the tutelage of another, a more skilled scholar or practitioner, in order to best learn an
art, skill, or trade through practical experience.
Traditional apprenticeships involved an agreement between an employer and an apprentice to provide
a sustained period of training. For many working-class families during the post-World War II period,
getting an apprenticeship and learning a trade was a key aspiration for their male children (Vickerstaff,
2007). The apprenticeship usually began after completing a high school education, but sometimes
apprentices left school early to enter into an apprenticeship. Usually this meant the apprentices were
young adults with the apprenticeship considered a path to adulthood. Research on the apprentice
experience shows that for many apprenticeships, one of the key things learned was how to get along with
other people, especially fellow workers (Vickerstaff, 2007). The approach of the apprenticeship programs
during the post-World War II era was to develop apprentices’ vocational knowledge and work habits, and
get them to attain substantive skills in their labor area. This system was built on the assumption that it was
the employer’s job through instruction, to bring young people on and invest in the next generation of
skilled workers. Apprenticeship programs are still used today, usually found in vocational learning.
In addition to apprenticeships in vocational learning, apprenticeship programs are sometimes found in
higher education, usually in graduate programs of study. For example, in an effort to update a graduate
program in instructional design and educational technology, Pennsylvania State University designed an
experimental program using a research apprenticeship for graduate students. In the program, graduate
students worked directly with their advisors in research teams as part of course credit.
In results of the study (Carr-Chellman, Gursoy, Almeida, & Beabout, 2007), students said the research
apprenticeship prepared them for the dissertation phase of their education better than any other course.
The course involved many aspects of the research process, including presenting at conferences and
publishing. Students felt the course helped prepare them for future careers as faculty members.
Journal of Applied Business and Economics vol. 12(1) 2011 47
Teacher Retention
Studies show that between 40 and 50 percent of teachers leave the profession entirely within the first
five years of teaching (Ingersoll, 2003). This high attrition rate results in inexperienced teachers, high
economic costs, and a lack of continuity. Mentoring has been shown to have some positive effects in
teacher retention even decreasing a turnover rate from 40 percent to 18 percent in the School and Staffing
Survey given to beginning teachers in 1999 (Ingersoll, 2003).
One of the most critical components of mentoring programs for new teachers is the relationship
between the new teacher and their mentor, often a veteran teacher. The mentor teacher provides crucial
support and advice to new teachers in areas of classroom management, lesson planning, pedagogy and
emotional support (Brill & McCartney, 2008). Mentoring also positively affects the mentor or veteran
teacher by expanding upon their teaching skills and leading to the development of new skills (Odell &
Ferraro, 1992).
Poorly implemented mentoring programs for teachers however, can do more harm than good (Brill &
McCartney, 2008). Badly structured and operated mentoring programs for new teachers create more
stress, lower career expectations, and are exhausting to mentees usually due to an ineffective and poorly
trained mentor (Smethem, 2007).
A mentoring program in the work place is most likely a new concept for most businesses even though
mentoring is not. In an organization, Shea (1995) defines the mentoring process as a “developmental,
caring, sharing, helping relationship where one person invests time, know-how and effort in increasing
and improving another person’s growth, knowledge and skills” (p.3). Mentoring programs in business
organizations are considered performance interventions. The programs are implemented to pair an
experienced employee as a mentor, with an inexperienced employee as a mentee. The purpose is to
increase the knowledge and productivity of the mentee and to enhance the performance of the mentee in
the organization. In those organizations with established mentoring programs, the benefits of running the
program have outweighed the costs involved (Barbian, 2002). It is important to first consider what a
performance intervention is to determine how mentoring fits as an intervention in the workplace.
Performance Interventions
A performance intervention is a solution introduced in an organization to improve human performance
by improving and enhancing productivity (Pershing, 2006). Performance interventions are used by human
performance specialists, in the systemic solution set of enhancing performance. The use of the word
systemic is important here. Systemic means affecting the entire system. In a system, everything is
connected to everything else. Systemic interventions address “organizational needs as a whole, especially
with regard to an organization’s vital processes and functions” (Pershing, 2006, p.13). Performance
interventions then, like mentoring programs, which successfully affect the whole organization, are worth
exploring as an option for performance improvement because of their systemic nature and impact on the
organization as a whole, not just the mentor and mentee.
There are several ways to classify performance interventions. A commonly used method developed by
Sanders and Thiagarajan (2005) breaks down performance interventions into six categories. They are:
improving knowledge, improving motives, improving physical resources, improving structure and
process, improving information, and improving health. According to Sanders and Thiagarajan (2005)
mentoring falls under the improving knowledge category. Interventions under this category are meant to
solve some sort of knowledge gap. These knowledge interventions focus on improving the essential
knowledge and skills that are required for job performance. In mentoring for example, a mentor assists the
mentee in gaining knowledge on how to perform the job, the skills needed and even perhaps office
politics. The knowledge gained by the mentee increases the likelihood of the mentee’s success.
48 Journal of Applied Business and Economics vol. 12(1) 2011
Distinguishing Formal and Informal Mentoring Programs
Formal mentoring programs with a structured approach to the mentoring process as opposed to
informal mentoring, those relationships that develop on their own, are shown to be positive and beneficial
to companies. Formal mentoring programs include training for mentors, tie the mentoring program to
business goals with measurable results, and conduct periodic evaluations and coordination offering on-
going support for mentoring pairs (Murray, 2006). In those situations, the mentors and mentees both
benefit in different ways. For mentors, studies have shown increased personal and job satisfaction. The
increase in satisfaction is a result of several factors. One is that mentors gain more influence in the
organization, through the added respect gained in the development of future leaders. Mentors also gain
professional assistance from the mentee on work projects and may also enhance their own skills by
learning new skills from the mentee. In addition, the relationship can help to motivate a seasoned mentor
by offering fresh viewpoints and new perspectives about the organization (Murray, 2006). In Ramaswami
and Dreher’s study (as cited in Gentry, et. al., 2008), they found mentoring helps the mentor gain support
through the establishment of networks of mentee’s that “payback” the mentor. This happens through the
mentee acting like an informant, supplying critical information that will assist the mentor in some way
when needed. This, in turn helps to strengthen a mentor’s reputation and recognition in an organization,
by enhancing the respect and visibility of the mentor.
The research on mentoring shows that mentee’s receive substantial benefits from a formal mentoring
process as well. These benefits as suggested by Kram (1985) are two separate, yet interrelated functions,
classified as career –related and psychosocial. Career-related benefits include higher job performance
ratings which lead to promotion and salary increases, and improved esteem and competence in the job.
The psychosocial benefits are part of the relationship between the mentor and mentee and include
friendship, emotional support, satisfaction and personal development. Other researchers, Chao, Walz &
Gardner (1992), have found that mentoring positively impacts career success, through more promotions,
more mobility, higher income and career satisfaction.
Negative experiences, however, are occasionally found in organizations with a mentoring program.
The negative attributes are most often seen in those organizations without a formal mentoring process,
relying instead on informal processes. According to Murray (2006), the informal mentoring process is
usually not tied to business goals, has no tracking system for mentoring relationships and no training or
structured support. Some of those negative concerns arise when a conflict occurs between the mentor and
mentee or mentee’s supervisor, such as the supervisor using the mentor to reprimand the mentee instead
of discussing performance issues with the mentee. Negative experiences can also occur if the mentor
exhibits negative behaviors like “sabotage, bullying, revenge-seeking and exploitation (Sandberg, 2008).”
In these situations, management consultants advise against relying on one mentor and feel it is a “high-
risk strategy,” and “bad mentoring relationships are worse than no relationship at all (Sandberg, 2008).”
For Luciann Lajoie, former marketing director at a theater company, it was hard to break off the
relationship with her mentor who, according to Luciann, never seemed to help her with any of her specific
questions that were job related. By the end of the mentoring relationship, which slowly dissolved as
Luciann minimized contact with the mentor, she learned “tips on applying makeup and how much
cinnamon to add to the coffee before percolating” (Sandberg, 2008), not exactly the skills necessary to
succeed in marketing. Luciann’s mentor probably could have benefitted from some mentor training and
been effective as a mentor in the relationship, if she understood the role was to provide job related
feedback and teaching.
In Luciann’s situation, her mentor did not exhibit negative behaviors like bullying and sabotage;
instead, her behavior was non-malicious, neglecting to provide the type of job knowledge and skills
necessary for Luciann to advance. This may have been due to a lack of knowledge on her role as a mentor
or her lack of interest in the role.
Lillian Eby, psychology professor at The University of Georgia, has studied both informal and formal
mentoring programs and has found that mentoring relationships can be as abusive and destructive as
dysfunctional family relationships. She had an experience as a mentee having a mentor “who did wonders
for me – gave me visibility and challenging assignments – but she was also belittling and manipulative,
Journal of Applied Business and Economics vol. 12(1) 2011 49
and involved me in her own political shenanigans” (Gianaro, 2005). According to Gianaro (2005), Eby
has found in her research studies that even in those mentoring relationships experiencing some negative
issues, usually the mentor and mentee hang in there, much like a husband and wife in a bad marriage. The
mentoring relationship is like other interpersonal relationships in that people have reasons for staying in a
bad relationship, usually because they are getting something good out of it along with the bad.
Even with the possibility of negative situations that can occur, the strong advantages of mentoring lead
to the implication that mentoring is a powerful tool of career management and organizational success
(Okurame, et. al., 2005). The organization benefits by increased productivity from the mentor and mentee,
increased retention and an enhanced image of the organization.
For organizations, the benefits of mentoring can be broken down into four main categories of
retention, promotion, productivity and personal and professional development (Triple Creek Associates,
Inc., 2007). Through these categories, organizations with mentoring programs create an environment that
fosters personal and professional growth by sharing business information and skills, they accelerate the
processes for the identifying, developing and retaining talent and also have increased job satisfaction for
both mentees and mentors (Triple Creek Associates, Inc., 2007). Businesses are always concerned about
the cost to implement a new program and value it only if there is a return on investment (ROI). For
mentoring programs, a simple formula can be used to calculate the ROI depending on the mentor, mentee,
and organization. For mentees, the ROI can be calculated through skill and knowledge development that
directly impacts productivity. For mentors, the ROI can be calculated through the sharing of knowledge
and expertise. Finally, for the organization the ROI can be calculated through retention, attracting talent,
saving on training and development (Triple Creek Associates, Inc., 2007).
Social Learning
The mentoring relationship between the mentor and mentee can be explored through the prominent
learning philosophy of social learning. Social learning recognizes the role of internal mental processing
and thought in influencing behavior. The idea is best known for what the name implies – learning from
others through observation and modeling. Morrison, Ross, & Kemp (2007, p.349), suggest that learning is
a result of an external event or process; learning is brought about by stimuli outside the person. In the
relationship between the mentor and mentee for example, the assumption is the mentee lacks certain
knowledge and behaviors necessary to perform the job. The mentee learns by observing the mentor who
functions as the stimulus to bring about the learning.
Social learning emphasizes the importance of observing and modeling behaviors, attitudes, and
emotional reactions of others. One of the most well known researchers of social learning is Albert
Bandura. Bandura (1977) states:
Learning would be exceedingly laborious, not to mention hazardous, if people had to rely
solely on the effects of their own actions to inform them what to do. Fortunately, most
human behavior is learned observationally through modeling: from observing others, one
forms an idea of how new behaviors are performed, and on later occasions, this coded
information serves as a guide for action. (p. 22)
Bandura (1977) proposed that observational learning consists of four phases: (1) attention: first
learners pay attention to a model, usually someone they find important, (2) retention, having observed the
model, the learner must repeat the behavior by mental rehearsal or practice to remember, (3) production:
extending initial attempts to retain the behavior, the learner now tries to replicate the model’s level of
expertise and (4) motivation: reinforcement is needed to sustain motivation to repeat the behavior.
According to Kearsley (2008), the principles of social learning are; the highest level of observational
learning is achieved by (a) organizing and rehearsing the modeled behavior symbolically and then
enacting it overtly, (b) individuals are more likely to adopt a modeled behavior if it results in outcomes
they value, (c) individuals are more likely to adopt a modeled behavior if the model is similar to the
observer and has admired status.
Another well-known researcher on the principles of social learning is Lev Vygotsky. Vygotsky
proposed an approach to learning that both describes and explains the relation of thought to action, and
50 Journal of Applied Business and Economics vol. 12(1) 2011
the development of higher psychological functions from lower. His approach stressed the social origins of
thinking (Berducci, 2004). Vygotsky focused on a developmental continuum. Infants for example, can
discriminate among objects in the environment because of their possession of certain biological abilities.
As the infant matures and develops into a child, the acquirement of language and social skills is largely
the result of the caretaker and behaviorist in nature. As the child matures and moves along the continuum,
the child will begin to operate autonomously. Vygotsky’s theory explains learning in this way, by the
transformation of interaction.
His theory has been applied to training in the workforce. Considering Vygotsky; following orders is
the essence of training: one initially follows an order of another, and eventually an order of the self. In
mentoring, for example, a mentee is hired and begins working with a mentor to learn some of the basic
rules of the company, eventually, through transformation, the mentee operates within the continuation of
the system of those rules without the necessary guidance of the mentor. In Vygotsky’s theory, in the
beginning of training, the mentee is dependent and rule-conforming but by the end of the training, the
mentee is rule-obeying and autonomous.
In applying the principles of social learning to mentoring for example, we can suggest that if the
mentor is admired and has similar likeness to the mentee, maybe in work ethic, career interests, and
educational background, then the mentee is more likely to adopt the mentors behavior in the workplace,
especially if the mentee notices the mentors behavior is met with positive results which the mentee wants
to achieve.
It is easy to see how this idea can result in a positive mentoring relationship for the mentee if the
mentor exhibits positive behavior. On the other hand, the theory could also work in a negative way. For
example, if the mentor exhibits unethical behavior and the mentee observes this, yet the mentor continues
to achieve promotions and praise from within the organization, the mentee could adopt the unethical
behavior also. These types of situations, though rare, could reverse any positive effects of a mentoring
program in an organization.
Matching the Mentor and Mentee
Nykodym, Freedman, Simonetti, Nielsen, and Battles (1995) suggest that being prepared for a
mentoring relationship along with a common language or common ground can help mentoring be
successful. If a mentor and a mentee do not have enough in common, this will hurt the relationship.
Cognitive Style
One way to match a mentor and mentee is through cognitive style. Cognitive style is a personality
variable defined by Tennant (1988) as “an individual’s characteristic and consistent approach to
organizing and processing information.” Cognitive style affects how an individual interacts socially and
in any interpersonal function. A simple way of explaining cognitive style is the left brain/right brain
analogy. A person who has a dominant left-brain or cerebral hemisphere will be more analytic, rational
and sequential in processing information. A person with a dominant right brain is more holistic and
intuitive for simultaneous information processing (Sperry, 1964; Luria, 1966) (as cited in Armstrong,
Allison, & Hayes, 2002).
In the workplace, an analytic or left-brain dominant individual will be more compliant, prefer structure
in decision-making and apply systematic methods of investigation or step-by-step solutions in problem
solving. On the other hand, a right brain dominant individual will rely on random methods or holistic
approaches to decision making (Lynch, 1986). Cognitive style compatibility is important because it helps
decrease stress and frustration in the workplace. People who are similar in their cognitive styles will
approach problem solving the same way, in a sense they are on the same page (Tennant, 1988).
When matching a mentor and mentee on similar cognitive styles, Armstrong, Allison, and Hayes
(2002) found both parties reported enhanced psychosocial and career mentoring functions. This meant
they felt the person was a confidant and someone to talk to about problems and anxieties in the
workplace. In addition, the enhanced career functions from the relationship enabled the mentee to discuss
career plans and performance feedback with the mentor.
Journal of Applied Business and Economics vol. 12(1) 2011 51
In addition, their findings also show the importance of mutual liking. In other words, if a mentor
perceives the mentee to be similar to themselves, the mentor was more likely to like the mentee. If you
consider this a moment, in the workplace we tend to work better with those who have similar work ethics
and interests. When we work well with someone, we usually like him or her also. Working with
individuals who cause us stress, leads to dislike, frustration, avoidance and even anger. It seems natural
that these patterns would extend into the mentoring relationship.
Another area of commonality found to be important in the successful pairing of a mentor and mentee is
gender. If finding commonality is important in the pairing of mentors and mentees it seems likely that
pairing by gender would be important. Armstrong, et al. (2002) found relationships reporting a positive
experience were most likely to be of the same gender. In those relationships with a male and female, the
reported psychosocial and career functions were significantly lower and therefore less successful.
Personality and Temperament
Personality, the patterns and qualities of behavior that are distinctive in an individual (Webster’s New
World College Dictionary, 2002), and temperament, the nature or disposition of an individual, are two
aspects to consider when matching a mentor and mentee for a long term mentoring relationship. Having
an understanding of personality and temperament is important in the workplace and in a mentoring
experience, because it can give insight into how an individual will interact with others, make decisions
and perceive a situation. In mentoring, one of the greatest challenges in implementing and sustaining a
mentoring program is in finding and recruiting good mentors. One tool to use in this process is a
personality test. Perhaps the most well known personality test is the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator
(MBTI), developed over 60 years ago. The Center for Applications of Psychological Type (CAPT)
indicated in 2002 that this test was used in over 1,000 empirical studies and was administered to over
three million people per year (Capraro & Capraro, 2002).
The MBTI personality test is based on the research of Carl Jung. Jung believed human behavior could
be explained through different psychological type classifications. Those classifications are the two basic
functions of people’s personalities. In Jung’s theory, the first function of a person’s personality is how
information is taken in or how it is perceived. The second function is how an individual makes a decision.
The functions of our personalities, while seemingly random, are actually very ordered, structured
reactions based on the way we prefer to use our judgment and perception (Myers & Briggs Foundation,
2008). Jung’s theory was later expounded upon by Katherine Briggs and her daughter Isabel Briggs-
Myers, who developed the MBTI assessment as it is known today.
The MBTI assessment classifies a personality type in 16 different ways based on four preferences of
thinking and acting. Each of the personality types has an abbreviation symbolizing a primary cognitive
preference or type of function. These types include preferences for extraversion/introversion (EI), sensing
or intuition (SN), thinking or feeling (TF), and judging or perceiving (JP).
Describing the preferences further, the EI preference focuses on whether an individual’s general
attitude toward the world is oriented outward to other persons and objects or is internally oriented. The
SN preference reflects whether a person prefers to rely primarily on observable facts detected through one
or more of the five senses or intuition or relies on insight. The TF preference distinguishes between
individuals who prefer to use logic when making decisions or prefer to consider the people involved or
special circumstances. The JP preference deals with the outside world in decision-making; it is the
difference between making decisions to get things done or staying open to new ideas and options (Myers
& Briggs Foundation, 2008).
The MBTI assessment could be a useful tool in a mentoring program because it can offer insight into a
mentor and mentee’s personality in order to match each with a compatible personality type. Some
personality types do not mix well with other personality types and in a mentoring relationship, it is crucial
to make an effective match from the beginning in order to maximize the productivity and efficiency of the
mentoring relationship.
In a research study, the MBTI was used by Stromei (1999) to test personality types of mentoring pairs
for compatibility. Mentors in the study were upper level managers, directors, and vice presidents. The
52 Journal of Applied Business and Economics vol. 12(1) 2011
mentees were middle level managers. The study found that mentees showed significant improvement on
their leadership effectiveness and overall satisfaction of the mentoring experience when paired with a
mentor with a compatible personality type to their own. This finding was used to propose a model for a
formal mentoring program.
Many businesses use the MBTI assessment as a training tool for professional development and
organizational improvement. The MBTI assessment is useful with teams, for conflict management and
performance improvement, for employee coaching, for management development, and for executive
coaching. Despite the use of the MBTI in businesses for organizational improvement, Stapleton (2007)
found that organizing teams based on heterogeneity of the MBTI assessment provided better performance
on problem solving than forming teams of homogeneous individuals. This is the opposite method of
pairing in a mentoring relationship. In mentoring, homogeneity in personality traits results in a more
satisfying mentoring experience (Stromei, 1999; Nykodym, Freedman, Simonetti, Nielsen, & Battles,
The MBTI is frequently used with the Keirsey Temperament Sorter (KTS-II), developed by David
Keirsey. The KTS-II helps explain how an individual will react in situations based on temperament.
The KTS-II is a 70-question instrument based on Keirsey Temperament Theory (Keirsey, 1978). The
theory classifies temperaments into four groups used to describe human behavior: artisan, guardian,
rational and idealist. A person with an artisan temperament is fun-loving, playful, unconventional and
bold. Artisans are usually known as troubleshooting leaders. A guardian temperament is dependable,
hardworking, responsible, and makes a stabilizing leader. A rational temperament is independent, strong-
willed, focused on problem-solving and makes a strategic leader. Common characteristics of an individual
with the idealist temperament are; enthusiastic, kindhearted, and nurturing. This type of temperament
makes an inspirational leader (Keirsey, 1978).
These four types of temperament are further subdivided into character types. Of these 16 different
types of characters, one type is known as the mentor temperament and falls under the idealist group. The
mentor, or teacher personality, otherwise known as the ENFJ, is considered externally focused,
introspective, altruistic, and positive and have excellent people skills. An ENFJ feels it is important to
help others grow. The ENFJ personality is warm and has a natural desire to be supportive and
encouraging. The ENFJ’s are considered charismatic and possess excellent language skills; therefore, they
do well in leadership roles. ENFJs strive to enhance the lives of others.
While it may be tempting to suggest that only those individuals who are classified as a mentor
personality qualify for a mentoring program, that would be a mistake. Each personality has leadership
qualities that are compatible with different types of personalities. The key is to use the assessments to
match a mentor and mentee for compatibility and not necessarily mentor personality qualities because not
all mentees will have personality types compatible with the mentor type qualities.
Implications and Further Questions
This research explored the history of mentoring and the use of mentoring in the traditional learning
environments of apprenticeship programs and teacher retention. By considering the traditional uses of
mentoring for learning, and understanding why mentoring works by considering social learning theory,
business organizations can use the mentoring concept for learning as a performance improvement and
performance intervention.
The most common negative factor of mentoring programs in businesses organizations is the
unsuccessful matching of a mentor and mentee. This research explored and discussed some
commonalities to use; such as cognitive style, gender, personality and temperament, when pairing a
mentor and mentee in the workplace, in order to avoid the problems of unsuccessful mentor relationships.
Before undertaking the implementation of a mentoring program in a business or entering into a mentoring
relationship, it is important to understand that successfully matching a mentor and mentee is crucial to the
success of the mentoring relationship and mentoring program.
If mentoring provides so many advantages to an organization and a mentor and mentee, the question
remains as to why more businesses are not incorporating formal mentor programs into their operational
Journal of Applied Business and Economics vol. 12(1) 2011 53
structure or human resource training and development programs. Mentoring as a concept has been around
for a long time, but because it is fairly new in businesses, there may be a lack of trainers or consultants
available with knowledge on how to establish formal mentoring programs, or businesses may not
recognize the strong relationship between mentoring programs and productivity. Additional research is
necessary to establish the ROI for formal mentoring programs in businesses.
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... Some researchers have persuasively indicated that successful mentoring relies on the quality of mentors and mentees, in this case, their professional and personal attributes (Hudson, 2010(Hudson, , 2013aHudson et al., 2015;Johnson & Ridley, 2004;Kahle-Piasecki, 2011;Lacey, 1999;Matzler, Renzl, Mooradian, von Krogh, & Mueller, 2011;Maynard, 2000;Rajuan, Beijaard, & Verloop, 2007;Rippon & Martin, 2006;Straus, Johnson, Marquez, & Feldman, 2013;Sweeny, 2008; U.S. Department of Transportation [USDT], 1996;van Ginkel, Verloop, & Denessen, 2016). According to experts, the professional and personal attributes are important to build a harmonious mentoring relationship which impacts mentees' learning. ...
... With this outstanding qualification, they typically have the ability to create opportunities for their mentees in attaining pedagogical content knowledge using mentoring support enactment. Numerous researchers strongly suggest that qualified mentors will help mentees become competent professionals (Hudson, 2010(Hudson, , 2013aHudson et al., 2015;Johnson & Ridley, 2004;Kahle-Piasecki, 2011;Lacey, 1999;Matzler et al. 2011;Maynard, 2000;Rajuan et al., 2007;Rippon & Martin, 2006;Straus et al., 2013;Sweeny, 2008;USDT, 1996;van Ginkel et al., 2016). With good qualification, a "mentor can help the newcomers comprehend the culture and philosophy of the school and can offer the emotional and intellectual support that are needed in adaptation phase" (Jonson, 2008, p. 6). ...
... With these qualities, both mentors and mentees could build positive relationships and create collegial interaction to develop mentees' positive learning. The findings of this study confirm the views of previous research in this respect (Hudson, 2010(Hudson, , 2013aHudson et al., 2015;Johnson & Ridley, 2004;Kahle-Piasecki, 2011;Lacey, 1999;Matzler et al. 2011;Maynard, 2000;Rajuan et al., 2007;Rippon & Martin, 2006;Straus et al., 2013;Sweeny, 2008;USDT, 1996;van Ginkel et al., 2016). ...
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Mentoring is a form of significant professional support for novice teachers’ teaching expertise. This study aimed to explore the effectiveness of a school-based mentoring program for novice teachers in ‘Permata Hati’ secondary school in Indonesia. A qualitative case study research design was employed to identify the impact of the mentoring program’s effectiveness and investigate the complexities in terms of its implementation in relation to the pedagogy, institution and culture of the school community. The factors that contributed to the success were examined. Semi-structured interviews, focus group interviews and document reviews were used to collect rich data on the mentoring experience from seven pairs of mentors and mentees who participated in the study. The findings revealed that for both groups, mentors and mentees, the mentoring experience was mixed. However, they reported that generally they had gained professional expertise and personal confidence from the experience. With the competences gained, they felt they could promote a positive learning culture in their school. The factors that influenced the success of the mentoring program were the mentors’ and mentees’ professional and personal qualities, the peer learning support provided, mentoring preparation and support strategies. Other elements that resulted in a positive experience for both mentors and mentees were supportive relationships, interpersonal interactions, reflective practices and the collaborative learning generated by the teaching observation sessions. A variety of barriers appeared to inhibit the success of the program, such as the mentors’ and/or mentees’ poor professional and interpersonal skills, lack of personal commitment, inadequate mentoring support and resources, and time constraints. What was evident from the data was that Javanese cultural values worked in contradictory ways. On one hand, the Javanese values assisted the teachers to cope with mentoring issues and challenges. On the other hand, the values impeded their positive learning interactions, communication and supportive mentoring relationships. The findings in this study are noteworthy, as they offer new insights and strategies for creating more-effective mentoring programs in the future and modifying the model used in this study. The findings will be useful for educational stakeholders in Indonesia who are responsible for making policies and designing professional development programs in schools and other educational institutions. The findings may also contribute to mentoring and professional development programs and studies in Indonesia and other countries with a similar cultural and educational context.
... Where formal mentoring is done, people are usually paired according to their compatibility [6]. Kahle-Piasecki [7] affirms that where formal mentoring takes place, through formal processes, mentees are allocated to mentor teachers in accordance with the specific needs of mentees. However, there is no formal or structured mentoring model offered at the schools in South Africa. ...
... 872). Kahle-Piasecki [7] asserts that mentoring could be defined from the verb 'mentor' which means educating and providing knowledge for a beginning teacher. There is a close connection between an experienced and a less experienced person; it gives knowledge, guidance, and support through conduct by the experienced person [10]. ...
... The time for formal mentoring is strictly adhered to without fail [13]. Kahle-Piasecki [7] affirms that this kind of mentoring occurs through structured programme in which mentors and mentees are carefully selected and matched through a formal process. Mentors receive training and mentoring programmes are developed in line with the goals of the organisation. ...
... This finding is supported by several studies showing immense benefits from the implementation of Women mentoring programs across different sectors of the economy. [40] noted that mentoring relationships are established within many organizations to increase the productivity and performance of the mentee. This has been confirmed in different professions that have used mentorship programs. ...
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Women are highly underrepresented in the construction industry. In line with the sustainable development goals (SDGs) of the United Nations of gender quality and reducing inequalities, there is a need to think of innovative and sustainable frameworks to increase women's quota in the construction trade, especially in architecture. The study investigated the mentor-mentee relationship between female Architects and female Architectural students. The study utilized a research survey approach using a questionnaire data instrument. Using a purposive sampling technique, 84 research participants, consisting of female Architects and female Architecture students, participated in this study. The data collected are presented using bar charts, mean scores, principal component analysis (PCA), and categorical regression (CAT-REG). The study identified characteristics associated with good Mentors and good Mentees in the design profession. Mentees identified the main features that make a good mentor as the ability to teach, listen attentively, and communicate effectively. On the other hand, Mentors identified the qualities of a good mentee who communicates, is focused and demonstrates intelligence. The study showed that the significant negative experiences in a mentor-mentee relationship include a clash of personalities between the mentors and mentees, stealing credit for work done by both parties, and unrealistic expectations. Furthermore, these negative experiences result from poor attitude, wrong emotions, and loss of motivation. In conclusion, the study showed that proper implementation of Women mentoring programs among design professionals could lead to potential outcomes such as improved productivity, empowerment of inexperienced personnel, attracting likely female students, retaining women professionals, higher salaries, higher job satisfaction, and an increase in role models/mentors
... Educational level is one of the attributes that constitute organizational demography (Edun 2015). Kahle-Piasecki (2011) opined that by applying the concepts of social learning to mentoring, where mentors and mentees have the same work ethics similarities, career interests and educational background, the mentees are likely to adopt mentor behaviors in the workplace, particularly if the mentee's behavior creates positive outcomes that the mentee often wants to achieve. ...
Mentoring has been associated with many positive outcomes ranging from promotion, increased pay, job satisfaction, knowledge retention in organizations, reduced employee turnover as well as employee development. In spite of all these outcomes, numerous factors lead to the success or failure of mentoring program in the organizations. This paper aimed to evaluate the factors that affect the mentoring of professionals in construction firms with focus on quantity surveyors. Data was collected by administering questionnaires to the quantity surveyors in quantity surveying firms. The data collected was analyzed using mean item score, standard deviation, and Kruskal Wallis test. The results revealed that educational background, availability of supportive learning environment, mentors’ attitudes, mentees’ attitudes, past experience of mentor and mentee are the major factors affecting mentoring of quantity surveyors. The study recommended that top management QS firms should ensure the availability of supportive learning environment for mentoring to thrive in their firms, as the study found that supportive learning environment impacts on successful mentoring program. The study also recommended correct and appropriate matching of mentor and mentee to avoid attitudes that can inhibit the smooth run of the mentoring program in QS firms.
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This study focuses on examining the role of leaders’ Five-Factor Model (FFM) personality traits in their mentoring quality and mentees’ job satisfaction. It has also examined how leaders’ mentoring quality impacts mentees’ job satisfaction, leading to their job performance at the workplace. The study used an explanatory research methodology to determine the cause-and-effect relationship between mentors’ FFM personality characteristics, mentoring quality, and mentees’ job satisfaction and job performance. The study was based on path-goal theory and the Big Five-Factor Model of personality characteristics, and a questionnaire was utilized to collect information on the model’s constructs. Following the non-probability convenience sampling technique, the empirical data were collected from the academic and non-academic staff of public and private higher education institutions (HEIs) located within Pakistan on five-point Likert scale. The proposed hypotheses were tested by using PLS software. Four main conclusions were derived from this study. First, the leaders’ openness to new experiences, agreeableness, and emotional stability substantially influenced the mentees’ job satisfaction. Surprisingly, the leaders’ conscientiousness and extraversion qualities did not affect the job satisfaction of the mentees. Second, the findings demonstrated that the openness to experience, conscientiousness, and extroversion has a considerable influence on leaders’ mentoring quality, but agreeableness and emotional stability have a negligible impact. Third, the mentoring quality of the leader had a substantial effect on the job satisfaction and work performance of the mentees. Fourth, this study confirmed the belief that mentees’ job satisfaction has a favorable influence on their job performance within the context of Pakistan’s educational sector. The current study’s findings provided valuable insights to the educational institutions about which personality traits they need to foster in their leaders, making them an excellent leader to enhance their mentees’ job satisfaction and job performance within their organizational settings.
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This paper discussed mentoring, a tool for successful collaboration for Library and Information Science (LIS) educators, in the University of Calabar. For reasons why LIS educators collaborate, respondents revealed, among others, a sense of belonging, motivation, the challenge of management, witch-hunting, and reduction of cost of conducting research, among others. The results from mentoring for collaboration indicated that 19 respondents published 8 articles out of their first 11 published articles through collaboration efforts. Six respondents published six and two respondents had four through collaborative efforts. These represented 70.4%, 22.2%, and 7.41% of the results of mentoring for collaboration. The result show that LIS senior educators mentor young academics for collaboration. The paper identified some challenges of mentoring and the researcher suggested that mentors should be straightforward with the mentees because it is only by trust that people can work together irrespective of their profession.
In many universities, peer mentoring is a popular practice aiming to ease cultural transition for newcomers. Despite the ubiquity of such practice, the factors involved in short-term mentoring programmes and how they relate to mentoring outcomes remain under-researched in Malaysia. This collective case study aims to address this gap by exploring the factors shaping participants’ intercultural mentoring practice in a one-month programme. Interviews were conducted with ten participants comprising equal numbers of Korean mentees and local mentors, backed up by observations. Subsequently, five factors were identified: interest in cultural exchange, building rapport, obstacles to meeting, group conformity, and language accessibility, together highlighting the key role of meaningful intercultural communication in achieving the mentoring objectives. Through the lens of activity theory (Engeström, 2001, 2015), this study helps to shed light on the dynamics of successful mentoring practice shaped by undercurrents from the institution, the local context, cultural variation, and personal characteristics of the participants.
The use of virtual teams in organizations has shifted upward exponentially since the onset of COVID‐19, yet available research does not include findings based on workplace virtual team members, as opposed to student populations. Research is limited on what virtual workplace team members consider important in the performance coaching and personal development processes. Research on virtual team member perspectives is valuable for human resource professionals and organizational leaders and particularly helpful to organizations struggling to respond to the new work‐at‐home environment. The purpose of the mixed‐methods study was to explore the perspectives of virtual team members about how performance coaching, mentoring, and training contribute to their personal development. Participants for the study were members of social network virtual team groups who have been members of virtual work teams. The sequential explanatory study data was from a sample of 149 virtual team members (12 for the pilot survey and 137 for the full study). The Kruskal–Wallis results led to the rejection of the null hypothesis at an overall significance level of 0.05, with significance levels of 0.014 for coaching and 0.008 for mentoring, indicating a perceived positive contribution from performance development efforts (coaching and mentoring) on the personal development of individual virtual team members. These results on the interpersonal aspects of virtual teams from team members and consideration of perspectives on their personal development provide organizations, leadership, and human resources professionals, valuable information to improve virtual teams and the team member experience in normal and unusual work situations.
The problem of youth passivity is one of the main ones, according to experts who work with youth in Ukraine. Increasing the involvement of young people in the social and economic life of society is a priority of the youth policy of Ukraine. These tasks can be implemented more effectively with the introduction of mentoring as the most sensitive to the needs and problems of young people format of interaction. In Ukraine, the term “mentoring” is mainly used in social work with children and adolescents from vulnerable categories and in education. At the same time, professionals who work with young people and implement youth policy at the local level use extensively the various forms of mentoring and act on the principles of mentoring. But mentoring as long-term relationships with young people is not practised in Ukraine in youth work. It is a long-term relationship that gives a positive effect for a young person - in self-realization, in behaviour, concerning others and the community. In Ukraine, the term “mentoring in youth work” is not officially enshrined in any document, and is not actively used, although this term is found in texts about youth work as one of its forms of work with youth at the individual or group level. The United States and Europe have extensive experience in implementing, evaluating, and analyzing youth mentoring programs. The article analyzes the tools of mentoring as a format of effective interaction between mentor and ward, such as the role of mentor (learning consultant, coach, counsellor, information resource, role model, critical friend) in the process of interaction with young people based on US youth experience and developed European countries. The article also analyzes the functions of mentors in building relationships with wards, and areas of mentoring identified based on these functions. The analysis of the experience of mentoring helps to raise awareness of professionals working with young people about the mechanisms of building effective relationships with young people and, ultimately, greater inclusion of young people in public life and promote their self-realization.
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This article seeks to add to current policy and debate on apprenticeships and youth transitions more widely by reflecting back upon the historical experience of the apprenticeship model. The research comprises in‐depth interviews with 30 people who undertook apprenticeships in a range of trades in Great Britain in the period 1944–1982. The discussion focuses upon the socialisation aspects of apprenticeship and concludes that a key feature of good apprenticeships in the post‐ war period was that they offered a sheltered and extended period in which the young person was able to grow up and become job‐ready. Reconstructing the social, industrial, familial and community conditions that made this possible is very difficult in the contemporary period, although further work in oral history has considerable potential.
Intraoperative Bupivacaine for Meniscectomy.
This article reviews various mentoring roles, organizational attitudes toward mentoring, different kinds of mentors, mentoring functions, stages of mentoring, and the benefits and risks of mentoring. In addition, research done by the authors to discover the relationship between career success and mentoring is described. Finally, the use of TA to improve mentoring relationships, particularly with regard to anger and the disowning of the self, is considered.
Four years after their initial, mentored teaching year, two cohorts of beginning teachers (N= 160) were surveyed to determine whether they had remained in teaching and their retrospective attitudes about mentoring. Approximately 96% of those located were still teaching. Of the different types of support they received from their mentors, they most valued emotional support. It is suggested that teacher mentoring may reduce the early attrition of beginning teachers.
Purpose This study seeks to examine the role of informal mentoring in career success in an African work environment. Design/methodology/approach Data were collected from 510 first‐line bank managers through a survey of ten banks in four central business districts of Lagos State, Nigeria. Findings Results of hierarchical regression analysis revealed that informal mentoring accounts for a significant proportion of the variance ( β =0.64, p <0.01) in career success. Informal mentoring increased R ² from 0.06 to 0.41 ( p <0.01), indicating a significant change in R ² (Δ R ² =0.35, p <0.01). Research limitations/implications The findings are based on self‐report measures from respondents in the banking sector. This underscores the need for further research with objective measures from a wider domain. Practical implications An intervention is needed to make informal mentoring thrive, enhance its quality and ensure career success. Originality/value There is a paucity of literature relating mentoring to career success in the Nigerian and, indeed, the African work environment. This study addresses this gap in literature and corrects the inappropriateness of generalising from foreign cultures to the Nigerian society.
The research reported in this article investigates the changing demography of the teaching force at a time of increasing accountability. The study offers analysis of qualitative data to inform teacher retention strategies. It supplements existing knowledge about the career of teaching and challenges prevalent conceptions of linear career paths derived from the former industrial era. In many developed nations, the teaching profession is undergoing radical centralist reform aimed at school improvement, greater accountability and productivity, but retention of teachers is crucial to any planned improvements. This empirical study investigates beginning secondary teachers’ notions of career, from initial attraction to the profession to experienced and projected career trajectories in the second, third and fourth years of service. It focuses on 18 new teachers of modern languages in England. This research draws on the perspectives of three cohorts of six beginning teachers in consecutive years. An initial survey of participants in an induction support programme during their first year of teaching following qualification provided a representative sample. Data were gathered by means of semi‐structured interviews and written journal reflections. The analysis of novice teachers’ experiences, constructions of identity and perspectives on career trajectories suggests a typology of teachers: the ‘career’ teacher, the ‘classroom’ teacher and the ‘portfolio’ teacher, whose commitment to teaching may be temporary. The results of this study reveal diversity of experience, motivation and career trajectories that raise key issues for retention. Results suggest that increasing marketisation of education and intensification of teachers’ work challenge teachers’ ‘moral purpose’ and professional identity and adversely affect not only their retention but also new teachers’ intentions to remain in teaching. These findings suggest that if retention rates of the new generation of teachers are to be improved, policymakers need to recognise that supportive induction is essential, that professional satisfaction belongs to the ‘moral purpose’ of teaching, and that intensification of teachers’ work may contribute to teacher shortages.