Thursday, November 29th, 2012

2 out of 10 Australian Workers surveyed have completed a corporate mentoring program according to a survey completed over one year by local and international award winning corporate training company - Happening People (

People in Australian workplaces who have opportunity to be mentored, by those who have successfully walked the path before them, are more productive in a quicker timeframe and Corporate Australia is taking note!

Managing Director of Happening People, Samuel Day said today “20% of all corporate employees being trained in one topic – Mentoring - is significant in this country. I think Australian Organisations are seeing the return on their investment in Mentoring Programs as we have seen a substantial increase in demand over the last year for Mentoring Training.”

Organisations that provide mentoring programs to their people show significant uplift not just in the all-important bottom line but also in productivity, employee retention, organisational culture change, diversity, individual career growth and succession planning.

Research conducted by The American Society of Training and Development reported 75% of executives attribute mentoring as playing a key role in their careers.

Managing Director of Happening People, Samuel Day said “A company’s performance is significantly impacted by poor leadership. Mentoring Programs offer current and potential leaders and managers a sounding board and the strategies they need to navigate their way.”

The topic of Mentoring and how to go about mentoring is the focal point of this week’s coveted workplace blog by Happening People - Top 5 on How to be a Great Mentor. The top 5 include;
1. Success is in the Structure, 2. Responsibilities of the Mentee, 3.The 4 Phases of Mentoring
4. Bear in Mind The Mentees Manager and 5. Practice Confidentiality. (See a copy of the blog below or visit )

Happening People are known for their talents in working with organisations to take control of their companies’ performance. They have worked with 25% of Australia’s top 100 largest organisations. They offer Corporate Training Programs focused on Effective Leadership and Coaching Programs aimed at assisting; Leaders, Managers and their teams to become effective and inspiring leaders.
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BLOG Top 5 – How to Be a Great Mentor

Not to be confused with a coach a mentor is a peer to peer guide who is often described as someone who has walked the path before others. If you wanted to be the worlds best swimmer then you would work with the worlds best swimming coach but if you wanted to know what it was like to be the worlds best swimmer then you would talk with someone who has done it and this person is a mentor.

Mentors are people who help the mentee to develop and grow until the mentee feels empowered to function alone. Mentors do this by providing support, sharing their experiences, knowledge and skills whilst keeping in mind the level of skill and experience the mentee possesses. The relationship between the mentor and the mentee usually unfolds over time and can be formal and informal.

The role of a mentor is one that is best taken seriously for the mentee’s often see their mentor as ‘larger than life’ or the expert and it’s probably healthy for them to see you in such a way initially to help establish the relationship for they are looking for someone to point the way. They are often unsure of their abilities through a lack of experience and the mentee seeks to acquire your abilities. At times you may even feel that the mentee is becoming you.

There are a variety of skills good mentors possess which enables them to have long and successful relationships with their mentees who often go on to be their friends and provide mutual counsel. If it’s time for you to jump on the mentoring bus or indeed you are already on-board Happening People give you our Top 5 on How to Be a Great Mentor and in this top 5 check out our extra top tip (it’s one you won’t want to miss!) by liking our Facebook page

1. Success is in the structure
Mentoring can be stifled by too much structure. Many people who engaged in mentoring would not apply the label to their activities. Some would be embarrassed and inhibited by so naming the relationship. Very informal one-off instances of advice or short-term mentoring can afford to be totally unstructured. However it can be lack of structure with no agreed objectives, ground rules or parameters that leads to problems in mentoring. Where a mentoring relationship is recognised and acknowledged as such, a verbal agreement as to the purpose of the relationship is the minimum structure required. Written agreements can also be valuable.

2. Responsibility of the mentee
Your role as mentor requires you to guide, offer suggestions for improvement, uncover strategies that maybe of use to the mentee and provide them with a sounding board to help them navigate to a successful outcome. Your role here is not to take over and own the process or become possessive of the outcome. Ultimately the mentee is responsible for the outcome which you help them facilitate on the side lines.

3. The 4 phases to Mentoring
1. Start up- People seek mentors when they are typically unable to make sense of an experience on their own, they seek mentors to guide them in these situations, to interpret their experiences for them.
2. Development- This is where you will see and hear your mentee being more independent. This is usually the longest phase in mentoring and offers you the greatest chance to assist in enhancing their skills and knowledge.
3. Separation – This phase begins when the mentee starts to separate from you. You can expect that they will want to do things by themselves to prove themselves and establish their own identity. They will be looking to stand-alone. It is usually the most rewarding stage for both the mentor and mentee.
4. Common Ground – Here you will be looking to see that the mentee feels completely at ease without your guidance. Better yet the mentoring relationship turns into a workplace friendship based on mutual respect and admiration.

4. Bear in Mind the Mentees Manager
Some specialists in mentoring recommend that the boss should not be the mentor to a subordinate. However, some boss /subordinate mentoring works extremely well, either in the in the formal or informal sense. This works best when the culture of organisation endorses such behaviour or where the boss regards the staff development as a high performance goal in alignment with their own goals and those of the organisation. If you are not your mentees boss remember your job is to help the mentee develop and grow not to pick holes in how they are being managed.

5. Practice Confidentiality
Where the mentor/ mentee relationship commonly falls apart or is severely tested is when there is a breach of confidentiality. Trust is paramount to the success of the relationship and only you can decide how much confidential matter you offer. At times ethical issues arise in which you may consider breaking confidentiality e.g. organisational security. At this point it is often best to refer to your organisation policies if a breach occurs. Legally, the law of land prevails and cases of stealing or harassment, among others, must be reported.

Let Happening People help you and your people develop your mentoring skills by attending our Mentoring Training Program. To find out more call us on 1800 68 67 69 or visit our website

Contact Profile

Happening People

HAPPENING PEOPLE was founded by Samuel Day in 1996. Since that time it consulted with 25% of Australia's Top 100 companies over the past 15 years. Today more than 1 in every 500 working Australians has attended a Happening People corporate training program in topics such as; Solutions Selling Skills, Customer Service, Performance Management and Leadership.

Happening People helps clients take control of their performance and that of their people by understanding the needs of the client and tailoring a specific learning program to achieve greater performance.

More information is available at

Samuel Day
P: 61 412228124


Mentor, Mentoring, Mentee, Corporate, Australian Organisations



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