Mentoring: Things to consider before starting a scheme

As an experienced mentor herself, ‘Joined Up Networker’ Heather Townsend offers some basic pointers for accountancy firms considering the technique.

While researching ‘How to make partner and still have a life, I discovered that having a formal or informal mentor was a significant boost for moving along successful professional careers. Often these mentors will champion you and your career behind closed doors. Their support could help you get the right assignments, or focus attention on your abilities during partner meetings.

Many firms run mentoring schemes or initiatives. This article sets out 10 things your firm needs to think about before embarking on your own firm’s mentoring scheme. Register and log in to AccountingWEB for the full text covering:

1. The reason why

2. Senior level sponsor

3. Research

4. Incentive

5. Do you need an informal or formal scheme?

6. Write a business case

7. Have an ‘owner’ for the mentoring scheme

8. Upskill the mentors

9. Set expectations for the mentees

10. Link to existing people processes and systems

11. Review

Heather Townsend, MCIPD, is the co-author of ‘How to make partner and still have a life’ which is published by Kogan Page in November 2012. More details about the book can be found on the book’s blog: ‘How to make partner and still have a life’

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