Mentoring in the Workplace

Looking for a way to enhance your professional and personal skills in the workplace?  Finding a mentor is a great way to do just that!  Mentoring programs are becoming a standard in many organizations.  According to Chronus Corporation, over 71 % of Fortune 500 companies now offer mentoring or sponsorship programs.

A few benefits to having a mentor are learning:

  • valuable business and life skills
  • best practices for your industry
  • appropriate behaviors and protocols.

Having a mentor gives you the opportunity to discuss your ideas and opinions with an interested listener in a safe and confidential environment.  You can also benefit from hearing the lessons that your mentor has learned along the way – both their successes and failures.  Having a mentor sets a great training ground to enable you to develop good mentoring behaviors to become a good mentor for others in the future.

Here are a few tips on how to find a mentor:

  1. Ask yourself what you want in a mentor. Is it an expert who can help with a specific business challenge?  Are you looking for someone inside your workplace who has the inside track to be an advocate for you?  Mentoring doesn’t have to be a “business” relationship, you can find mentors outside the workplace from organizations you belong to or neighbors and relatives as well.
  2. Check with your employer’s human resources department to see if they have a mentoring program. Many big corporations offer sponsorship or mentoring programs.  You can also tap into industry associations.
  3. College ties do bind. Find a mentor from your alma mater by utilizing Pioneer Connect and LinkedIn.
  4. Try to find a mentor who will challenge your thinking and show you there might be a different way to approach a problem, or an additional potential, one you never knew existed.
  5. Make it fun! When asking for a meeting with a potential mentor, avoid making it seem as though you will only add to their workload.

Mentorship is an exciting opportunity for both of you and often turns into a mutually beneficial relationship.


Author: Kelli Sessions is the Career Services Coordinator in the Taylor Family Undergraduate Career Center in Daniels College of Business.





Editor: Maria Kuntz, Assistant Director, Advancement Marketing at University of Denver

By Maria Kuntz
Maria Kuntz Assistant Director, Advancement Marketing