By: Bobby Filauri, Director – Corporate Payments, Comdata

Who should I ask? Where do I find that form? What should I say to this client?

These are all common questions that a new hire may pose to colleagues. Mentorship often falls by the wayside, yet it is very important in the workplace. A new position can be stressful, but a mentor helps to create a learning environment which enables careers to start off on the right track.

A mentor is more than just someone to turn to for guidance; a mentor’s role also financially benefits a company in multiple ways. It is no secret that new-hire training and orientation can be expensive and takes many hours, and an employee may never grasp all of the information that is thrown at them in the first few weeks. However, a mentor serves to reinforce what new hires have learned and encourage engagement. Mentors also help to alleviate another costly trend for employers: turnover. Let’s face it, at times, everyone needs a place to vent. A mentor can help ease the burden an employee is feeling and more importantly, steer the employee back to a level-headed frame of mind in a professional manner. Avoiding additional training and employee turnover directly reduces costs to the bottom line.

Keep in mind this is not a one-way street. The mentor will also benefit from the relationship, because mentors need a refresher back to the basics too. Encountering what may seem to be an elementary question often helps to reinforce the proper measures to complete a task, proper measures that seasoned employees may over time gloss over in their minds. As employees advance in their careers, it becomes commonplace to do things their “own way.” Mentorships serve as a quality reminder to the mentor on how to do things by the book.

Throughout a mentee’s development, he or she ideally will become less reliant on the mentor, but that relationship remains invaluable regardless of the career stage. Once a mentee reaches this point, he or she has a unique perspective and the tools to serve as a mentor and assist those who are following a similar career path. Like many things in life, mentorship is a cycle. When one cycle is complete, another one can start.

September 4, 2019