I was asked to join Crossing Thresholds as a Mentor by one of my team, who had enrolled on Crossing Thresholds. She believed I would make a good mentor for others on the programme. I wondered how I would find the time to fit it all in, but on reflection, considered that the benefits of being involved in a programme like this warranted the time I would need to devote.
My interactions with my mentees over the subsequent period, has allowed the privilege of witnessing their development and sharing in the joys of their successes. Moreover it offers me the ability to gain insights and perspectives from different areas and from different grades of not only my business but the wider Civil Service. I am then able to consider these perspectives when decision making and it has helped me become more conscious of my own bias.
My mentees have kindly agreed to travel to my office to meet with me, which is particularly helpful, as it keeps the mentoring sessions to a manageable timeframe for me, although I do give them the option for our first meeting to take place in a more public setting, a coffee shop perhaps; this, I think, makes that first meeting a little less threatening for the mentee.
Following feedback I have provided on competence statements and interview techniques, all my mentees have gone on to secure promotions so far. For anyone considering mentoring, I would recommend that the benefits for personal development and the positive impact you will have, make it a thoroughly worthwhile venture. Let the mentee drive the interactions, it is after all their improvement programme, but a gentle nudge now and again just helps to keep them focussed.