Unlock Your Team's Potential: The Benefits of Coaching and Mentoring in the Workplace

Coaching and mentoring are two powerful tools that can be used to help employees develop their skills and reach their full potential. Coaching is a skill-based approach that focuses on helping employees develop specific skills, while mentoring is a knowledge-based approach that focuses on sharing knowledge and experiences. Both approaches can be used to help employees learn new skills, gain confidence, and become more successful in their roles. Training high-potential employees in leadership skills is one example of how coaching and mentoring can be used in the workplace.

Leaders can be trained on unconscious biases in the workplace, while diverse employees can be advised through employee resource groups. Companies like Mastercard have seen the benefits of mentoring as a way to break down silos and help employees connect with co-workers across the company. Schneider Electric also took advantage of its talent market to generate pairs of mentors based on abilities and ambitions, rather than making combinations based solely on seniority. This has proven to be particularly beneficial in welcoming new talent to the organization.

Surveys revealed that nearly 50% of employees who left the company cited poor growth opportunities as their main reason for leaving. Mentoring is also a core component of internal mobility at Schneider Electric. With a workforce of more than 100,000 employees, eliminating silos is a priority for Novartis. In the past, partners were striving to gain visibility on opportunities outside their region and role. This led to the launch of a mentoring program with an emphasis on cross-functional and cross-country partnerships. Cooley is a global law firm with more than 1,500 lawyers.

The complexities of their legal work demand that new lawyers be prepared to act quickly. To help with this, they created the Cooley Academy Mentoring Program (CAMP) which was designed to onboard new employees and prepare them to establish connections with more experienced people. This provided them with a good support system that helped them to become competent in their new roles more quickly. Making online learning and training easily accessible to your team allows them to search for a variety of resources and best practices and then overcome a challenge on their own. Some professionals use multiple coaches or mentors throughout their careers, depending on their desired goals. Mentoring and coaching increase the confidence and interpersonal skills of the mentor and mentee.

The outcome of a coaching agreement is specific and measurable, showing signs of improvement or positive change in the desired area of performance. Sometimes, it's more appropriate for the boss to play the role of coach or mentor; other times it's more appropriate for another person, either inside or outside the organization, to help the professional who needs help. Training and mentoring employees in the workplace doesn't mean you have to constantly solve problems for your team. Coaches don't offer solutions on their own; they don't insert their points of view into the conversation but rather encourage the coach to explore the topic for himself and take responsibility for developing the solution. Coaching and mentoring serve as workplace learning tools that can lead to empowering your employees. The training agenda is created jointly by the coach and coachee to meet their specific needs. Be smart with how you use your time and you'll be able to train and retain your team while maintaining a high level of quality in your own work.