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Mentoring – Underestimated, Under-utilised. Are you missing a trick?

What an under-utilised talent development technique this is in most businesses. At face value, understandable really, it’s time consuming, the benefits are difficult to measure, and the effects can often be seen only in the longer term…and after all, it’s the line manager’s responsibility to make sure their direct reports are happy, engaged and fulfilling their commitments to the business! However, in reality the benefits of a mentoring programme are many-fold for all parties involved. In a  managed and structured programme, it can really help to engage talent in the company, connect the executive with talent potential, grow and develop an individual’s contribution and secure them in the business for the longer term.

Done well, it shares knowledge and know how, it opens a conversation about the business, its nuances, its peculiarities, it helps people understand how the business works and it can be targeted and specific. It even enables the Mentor to reflect on his/her own experience and better understand what has been done well and what can be done differently and better. It provides a sense check, sounding board and confidante in a really successful mentoring programme and as the relationships mature. It enables a review of critical competences and values for the business, it supports learning and development and succession planning.

A stand alone mentoring programme is tricky to sustain, but a mentoring programme which links with the HR Plan and resourcing model can really enhance and bring your talent management alive with great results for your business. Understanding how the business is supporting individual’s ambition is critical to supporting and enabling talent to grow, be challenged and remain with the business. It supports the line manager in nurturing and optimising their resources and retains talent for the company.

New recruits can often immediately benefit from a mentoring relationship. We recommend the use of mentoring as early as possible after a new recruit joins the team. Not only does early mentoring improve short and long term performance, but it also builds the ‘psychological contract’ and ensures a faster and higher level of return for your investment. It’s not enough to consider a recruitment to be successfully completed when the probation period is over; mentoring is a great opportunity to secure success in your recruitment…

There is no prescribed model for mentoring, but it usually relies on a more experienced employee becoming the mentor, ideally, an employee in a leadership role and sufficiently senior to be credible in the role of mentor. It requires the skills of questioning, listening, clarifying and reframing input. It requires commitment and support of the entire leadership team and a shared understanding of its value.

The resources and capability to make mentoring successful for your business are already in place. Where TLD budgets are traditionally stretched this is an approach that enhances your commitment to your employees, is seen to be that and done well, will be a programme employees aspire to join – as part of their personal development plan.

Put Mentoring on your business or personal agenda for 2015, and see the rewards come!


Pauline has an extensive background in strategic HRM. If you would like to discuss any aspect of this article or for a discussion on how we can help with High Impact HR for your business, call Pauline at gkiresourcing on 07920162200 or

CIPD Labour Market Predictions 2015

A copy of the report is attached to allow you to read this at your leisure, please click the link below



The main highlights of this year end commentary on what might be expected to happen in the UK labour market are..

– the UK labour market will continue to expand at a strong rate, but it’s unlikely we’ll see any real increase in wage growth until 2016.

– employers will need to raise their productivity, including developing their workforce, before skills shortages mount.


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