Graduate Mentoring – When the honeymoon is over



When new employees join your organisation they are enthusiastic, keen to engage and looking forward to developing their career with you. The honeymoon period lasts six months.


Graduates, having survived a rigorous recruitment and selection process, welcomed with “on-boarding” attention and often supported with a Graduate Program of development activities and mentoring, enjoy the honeymoon a bit longer.


There has been a huge investment in graduate programs in recent years, recognising that the early experience of high-potential employees is critical to future success.


Most graduates rotate through 2 or 3 areas of an organisation, spending 6 months in each location. Frequently, the graduate program provides a variety of training activities, career and professional development, networking activities and sometimes, further tertiary education. A mentor is a constant, supportive relationship with someone who helps them navigate a deluge of new experiences. A sounding board and a confidante, the mentor is someone with whom a graduate can share hopes and aspirations, doubts, fears and difficulties. Mentors are also trusted sources of practical advice and life experience.


However, programs end and the honeymoon is over, too. A graduate with 12-18 months experience under their belt, is a much more marketable proposition than a new graduate, and they know it. If they are not engaged, being developed, seeing progress and experiencing good leadership and management, you are likely to lose them. Bang goes all your investment in the future.


What to do?


There is a relatively simple solution. Once the graduate moves from a program into the mainstream, who is the most important person? Who has most influence over whether they stay or go? What is the biggest factor in employee engagement? Their manager! So, during a graduate program, make sure your managers get ready to lead bright young employees. Teach them to mentor. Show them how to spot people’s talents and develop them into strengths. And while you’re at it, bust the myths about Gen Y. Help managers become great leaders of all team-members.


What would you like to do next?


Read the ebook Mentoring an Essential Leadership Skill – email me for your free copy

Talk to me about my workshop Mentoring and Coaching for Managers

Ask me about my webinar series Manager as Mentor


phone: 02 4342 2610



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About Ann Rolfe

Ann Rolfe is internationally recognised as Australia's leading specialist in mentoring, and is available for speaking, training and consulting. Here Ann shares her knowledge and allows you to ask your most pressing questions about mentoring.

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