7 Vital Mentorship Programs To Advance Your Career

Types of mentorship programs you must consider to stay relevant in your area of specialisation.

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You probably already know who a mentor is and what mentorship means. In an ever-changing world, as we live in today, there is always a need to upgrade and to stay relevant. Employees who don’t seek out career and personal development programs or mentorship find it hard to land the best opportunities in this competitive and technologically driven world.

Obviously, every company is looking for the best talent and investing in them in a way that offers a competitive advantage from the bottom line. So, are you an employee who feels the need to upgrade skill-wise or cognitive-wise in your area of specialisation?

A survey by McKinsey indicated that 58% of companies think that closing skills gaps should be prioritised post-COVID-19 outbreak. Companies globally are investing in mentorship programs to close the skill gaps because remote work culture is becoming popular. To substantiate, 69% of the survey’s respondents confirm that their organisations cater to skill building than they did before the 2020 pandemic. Mentoring is a perfect tool to transform workplaces and prepare employees for future career demands.

Mentorship is one of the best approaches employees can take to enhance their cognitive skills, soft skills, and technical expertise. Surveys show that cognitive abilities like social and emotional skills are high in demand nowadays. Mentorship programs not only offer career guidance but as well sharpen professional skills that managers look for in new hires. These programs can be customised to fit one’s career and special needs. If you’re an employee who needs career mentorship, here are some of the best mentorship programs you must consider to stay relevant in your area of specialisation.

7 Excellent Career Mentorship Programs for Employees

1. Digital Skills Mentorship Programs

We live and work in a modern world that is increasingly becoming driven by technologies. Digital skills have become so valuable that those who lack them find it difficult to compete with their counterparts. Today, there is a lot of digital transformation in all areas and business sectors to optimise efficiency and reduce human error.

With all that, modern employees must find digital skills mentorship programs to increase their prowess. Tech companies are highly dependent on technologies although other companies also see a rise in the need for digital skill sets. Any employee must be on the lookout to enhance their soft and hard skills in this ever-evolving digital world.

Digital skills vary from field to field and company to company and may include Microsoft Word skills, analytics tools, data visualisation, and skills in project management, and collaboration tools. You also ought to know that digital skills also need to be updated since technologies keep evolving. It will not only improve work efficiency but also helps to gain confidence in the ones you already have. Just like other mentorship programs, employees can attain digital certifications and badges to prove their achievements.

2. Emotional Intelligence Mentorship Programs

The concept of emotional intelligence was invented by researchers Peter Salovey and John D. Mayer in 1990. It was later on popularised by author Daniel Goleman around the same time. Emotional intelligence is defined as the ability to understand, manage, and control one’s own emotions and the emotions of others. Daniel Goleman stresses that technical and IQ skills are important, but emotional intelligence is highly essential in leadership. The researcher says that the skill of emotional intelligence contributes to about 90% of what sets high performers apart from their counterparts.

Emotional intelligence (EQ) mentorship can help modern employees, especially those who aspire to take up leadership positions. The skill of emotional intelligence helps employees learn how to deal with others, or manage teams and stress successfully. It can also help mentees learn how to build and maintain quality relationships. Mentorship in emotional intelligence can help anyone understand the power of emotions and use the knowledge to manage relationships.

Mentoring in EQ is associated with career-enhancing power since it helps mentees understand their moods and feelings and learn how they affect others. This can help in better decision-making and career advancement.

3. Career/Professional Development Mentorship Programs

It takes more than just soft skills and hard skills to thrive career-wise. Career development entails choosing a career path, improving the involved skills, and advancing gradually. It is a lifelong process and requires developing additional skills on how to navigate challenges, opportunities, time, and obstacles.

Successful career or professional development requires a mentor’s guidance on how to set SMART Goals (specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound) and objectives in a specific area of specialisation. Mentoring in career development can help mentees build professional networks that are valuable for achieving career success. Mentees can tap into key success areas highlighted by their mentors and even discover new career paths to explore. Career development mentorship programs equip professionals with insights, and knowledge and also align their interests with future career goals.

4. Critical Thinking Mentorship Programs

Critical thinking is one of the best personality traits any individual can benefit from. In professional life, critical thinking encourages a competent and independent lifestyle. Critical thinking skills also contribute to one’s decision-making capabilities. Humans make decisions on a daily basis, consciously and subconsciously. Whether it’s a mere employee, manager, or leader, mentorship in critical thinking can enhance one’s ability to make decisions.

Decision-making is an integral part of management and it’s also inevitable in personal life. Employees and managers must make effective decisions by firstly assessing the involved risks and opportunities. It’s only one’s critical thinking skills that can lead to better-informed decisions. Proper decision-making brings about favourable outcomes in the short and long run. With all that, employees or those who aspire to become leaders can sign up for a critical thinking mentorship program to learn how to make effective decisions in this competitive era.

5. Problem Solving Mentorship Programs

Like decision-making, the skill of problem-solving offers individuals a competitive edge whether in their professional or personal life. Generally, mentor and mentee relationships cater to the acquisition of advanced knowledge and its effective application. However, for the less experienced, problem-solving mentorship allows them to learn how to gather, analyse, and communicate information in a way that identifies and solves issues. Here, a mentee gets to learn from a mentor’s experience.

Managers and leaders need to have excellent problem-solving skills to bring about team productivity and efficiency. Many times, managers must identify better ways of getting tasks done or eliminating team conflicts and all of this requires excellent problem-solving skills. Effective problem-solving can also help working professionals deal with stress by analysing the source and developing actionable solutions. For example, they can choose to delegate where possible, troubleshoot problems and achieve a perfect work-life balance.

6. Leadership Development Mentoring Programs

Leadership skills are most expected of managers and change leaders. And for those who aspire to become managers, leadership skills can’t be taken out of the equation. Managers and leaders who possess quality leadership skills have higher chances of successfully managing teams, exercising empathy, and leading by example. These are some of the elements that make successful leaders.

Employees love positive work environments, yet hate micromanagement or being told what to do. Leadership mentoring programs enable mentees to learn how to effectively manage teams without being seen as threats. A leadership mentoring program can help those in leadership positions or new managers to develop skills like emotional intelligence, and agility. It can also help them understand the importance of diversity in a workplace. These relationships also help mentees to have increased self-assurance and managerial abilities.

7. Stress Management & Resilience Mentorship Programs

Stress is one of the leading psychological problems among working professionals. It highly affects performance and mental well-being and when left unchecked, it can develop into chronic stress. Long work hours, tight deadlines, heavy workload, and a lack of balance between work and personal responsibilities are some of the leading causes of stress among working professionals.

If you’ve tried out several stress management tips without a long-lasting impact, find a mentor in stress management for professional help. An emotion-focused coping strategy can help deal with chronic stress. There are higher chances of battling stress in the modern era and the most effective way to cope with it is to deal with it rather than ignore it. Regular habits like exercise, meditation, and open communication can help working professionals deal with stress.

Optimise Your Career Potential With Mentorship Programs

Career mentorship is a roadmap for professional growth and personal development. Mentoring generally offers a sense of direction to mentees and also enhances their confidence in a given area of specialisation. It enables them to develop knowledge and skills that allow them to stay relevant in this ever-changing corporate world.

If you want to stay ahead in your career, become efficient or land better opportunities, it’s essential to give mentorship a try. Any mentorship program of your interest will expose you to field experts who will help push your career forward.

Or if you’re an organisation looking to run a mentorship program, you can book a free demonstration with PushFar, the world’s leading mentoring and career progression platform.

Author Bio

"Doing what you love is the cornerstone of having abundance in your life." Wayne Dyer's thoughts are well suited to Kiara Miller. She has been working as a content marketing professional at 'The Speakingnerd’. Her passion for writing is also visible in the innovative joys of material she provides to her readers.

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