In order to help new or inexperienced employees develop their knowledge and skills, many offices offer mentorship programs. And in most instances, these mentorship programs are optional.

Mentorship programs are extremely beneficial. New employees who receive mentoring are often more effective and productive. They also benefit from feeling like they have someone whom they can reach out to for help and support. Indeed, the only problem with these types of programs is that the employees who need mentoring the most are not likely to participate.

According to a study by the National Bureau of Economic Research, the employees who sign up for mentorship programs tend to be the ones who need it the least. They’re often employees who have the skills and drive to succeed, whether they receive mentoring or not. On the other hand, employees who truly need assistance and guidance are not likely to sign up for a mentorship program – perhaps because they fear that it would be a sign of weakness or that their mentor might be disappointed in their lack of knowledge.

What can be done to fix this problem? The easiest solution would be to make your mentorship program mandatory. If it were required, everyone would benefit – including those who truly need it.

Oliver, S. (2021, November 1). Which workers need mentoring? The ones who don’t want it. The Wall Street Journal, R3.