Leadership and Management: Everyone Needs a Mentor / In the story that follows Churchill Education Co-Founder Tricia Velthuizen shares early experiences of her law career and the importance mentors played in her career progression. Then Churchill Education Trainer, Assessor and Mentor, Melody McNulty shares her mentoring experiences and why she loves it so much.
Listen to this article on our podcast, The Churchill Education Experience!
This is a story for all the leaders and managers in the world, who most importantly are also mentors.
Do you remember when you were first starting out in your career? I was in my mid-20s when I landed my first legal position. I was qualified, and I was admitted as a solicitor in Queensland at the time, but landing that first job was harder than I thought. I took a position as an instructing clerk with the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions to get my foot in the door.
As an instructing clerk for those first few months, I did a lot of glamorous legal work … like pushing trollies loaded with case files to court, photocopying paperwork, telephoning police officers to arrange times for the witnesses to be in court and pouring glasses of water for the barrister I was instructing.
It may not have been the stuff of the movies but it was a good chance to learn.
From those very first days, I realised that there are people who can be your supervisor in your job and there are people who will mentor you in your job.
Everyone needs a mentor
The mentors were the ones who gave me their time, their knowledge, their encouragement and their correction. Even better they remembered what it was like to be a learner and in that way, they were great leaders.In 17 years, I have spoken to countless Churchill Alumni who are much more than supervisors in their roles. They may hold a qualification in Leadership and Management, but with that, they hold a desire to mentor others.
Here at Churchill, one of our longest serving team members, Melody McNulty gets so excited when she takes a call from a new client who says, “my boss said to give you a call. They said I should be keeping my qualifications up to date and that they think I have the runs on the board now to look at getting a Diploma of Leadership and Management.”
Mel knows what great mentoring is all about …. she has worked with so many of our corporate clients in delivering their mentoring programs. That grin she gets on her face when she gets that call is contagious so I asked her what is so great about being a mentor?
“What I love about being a Mentor is that I am entrusted with the responsibility of seeing the potential in you, and guiding you through to achieving your goals.”
I love that as a mentor I often see more ability in you, than you see in yourself. I see it as my role to help you identify and become the talented person I see.As your mentor I am there to:
- Listen to you and offer impartial advice
- Encourage and empower your personal development and growth
- Help to identify and achieve your career goals
- Help to identify and correct gaps in your skills and knowledge
- Offer my knowledge and nudge you in the right direction from time to time
- Be your champion and challenge you
- Increase your confidence
Being recognised for your leadership skills
Does this sound like the sort of thing you have done in your current and recent roles? Did you know that you may be eligible for leadership qualifications based on what you already know and can do? Without needing to head back to the classroom for further study?
If that’s a YES, we encourage you to look at these Leadership and Management qualifications, which are all achievable through Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL).
- BSB50420 Diploma of Leadership and Management
- BSB60420 Advanced Diploma of Leadership and Management
- BSB80320 Graduate Diploma of Strategic Leadership
I became a mentor because I wanted to give and share. But what I discovered over the years is I get so much in return!
As your mentor I don’t just get to watch you succeed… I have the privilege of getting to know you, and I get to share your feeling of accomplishment when you reach your desired goals.
I cheer you along the way, push you in the right direction and challenge some of your decisions.
This for me, is an absolute joy!
As a mentor there is nothing more rewarding than seeing your eyes light up with understanding and your passion ignited to get out there and have a go.
It’s amazing when my mentees come to me excited about a successful outcome to a a strategy we’ve discussed. Like tackling difficult conversations for example. No one likes these right?! But hearing the positive outcomes when my mentees have had the courage to have a go is music to my ears.
One of my favourite things is helping my mentees to self-reflect and supporting their growth once they identify their own individual strengths and potential. It’s amazing to see that light of recognition and understanding.
I’ve found the desire to change is much stronger than being told you need to change.
You might be wondering what a mentor can do to help your organisation?
There have been multiple studies over the years that show having employees mentored helps them reach their full potential, making them more productive and much happier in the workplace.
We all understand that happy workers lead to happy customers, colleagues and our leaders also suffer a whole lot less stress with a happy workplace.
This also reduces staff turnover and increases productivity. According to current Work Health and Safety legislation, as employers we are now responsible for the psychological wellbeing of our employees as well as the physical.
Aside from the facts and figures, my experience has been predominantly with mentoring workplace leaders. What I’ve found is that leading others can be very lonely. Particularly when you feel like you are failing as a leader.
The leaders I work with find it incredibly beneficial to have an impartial someone to bounce off. Help and advice is received and given in an unbiased, completely confidential manner.
As a Leadership Mentor I have had success in developing mentee skills in:
- Enhancing workplace culture
- Effective communication including having those tough conversations
- Understanding self and others
- Self-reflection as a leader and communicator
- Improving workplace relationships
- Building team trust and accountability
- Digging deeper and understanding the whys
When you think about it, who wouldn’t want someone who’s only purpose is to support, encourage and help you achieve?
If you are a leader who could use some support for the important but often lonely job of leading, reach out and have a chat with Melody: 1300 793 002 /firstname.lastname@example.org
And if you would like to encourage your team to turn their leadership and management skills, knowledge and experience into a nationally recognised qualification, contact us on one of the below methods to find out how we can help your team get qualified.