How your firm can attract – and retain­ – talent

How your firm can attract – and retain­ – talent

In the era of ‘the great resignation’, it’s no secret Australia is experiencing a talent shortage. And second to seeking better work-life balance, guess what employees are citing as the reason for the exodus?

A lack of professional growth.

So, what’s the solution?

At BellchambersBarrett, our mentorship programs prove time and again to be essential in helping us attract, retain and progress our valued talent.

Read on to learn why mentoring is so effective – and how to embed a more formal mentorship program in your workplace.

The magic of mentoring

A mentorship program is typically a one-to-one relationship where the employee receives direct guidance from a senior leader.

So why is mentoring so powerful?

Because it allows your team to develop skills in-line with your company’s needs and values – ensuring its long-term growth and success.

But the magical ripple effects of mentoring don’t stop there.

It also brings personal rewards to the mentee and the mentor – with both parties reporting higher rates of job satisfaction.

This in turn helps to build a positive and loyal culture.  

And in a world where recruitment and onboarding costs can rival a team member’s annual salary, that positivity and loyalty is priceless.

Proven impact across workplaces

At BellchambersBarrett, we’ve had our own ‘Coach and Buddy System’ in place for a long time.

Pairing every new staff member with a senior manager, our mentorship program is integral to our firm’s success and culture.

But our firm is certainly not the only one that’s reaping the rewards:

71%Of Fortune 500 companies run mentorship programs.
(Centre of Workplace Leadership, 2016)
22%Higher retention rate for talent who receive mentorship.
(Five-year longitudinal study by Gartner et al, 2006)
20%Higher retention rate for mentors who provide mentorship.
(Five-year longitudinal study by Gartner et al, 2006)
5 xHigher chance of promotion for employees who were mentored.
(Five-year longitudinal study by Gartner et al, 2006)

How to create a mentorship program for your workplace

Embedding a formal mentorship program in your organisation doesn’t have to be complicated.

Here are five basic but crucial steps:

  1. Get crystal clear on your career pathways. Employees who know their role progression pathway will have tangible targets to aim for. Plus, it gives mentors an idea of what they should guide their mentees towards.
  2. Take time to understand your people. To put the right people in the right roles, you need to know their strengths and areas for professional growth. But to be even more effective? Learn about their interests and personal goals too.
  3. Find the right mentor. Not everyone who’s fantastic at their role will be a great mentor. You’ll need to identify leaders who have industry knowledge and interpersonal skills, who are happy and willing to take someone under their wing.  
  4. Welcome feedback. Your mentorship program should not be a set-and-forget process. Get regular feedback from your mentors and mentees ­­– and revise your program when needed.
  5. Allow flexibility for exploration. If your talent is showing a special interest or skillset outside their current function, don’t lock them in. Let them explore and grow that skill, even if it means trying out different roles and departments. You never know where it may lead – and how invaluable it may be to your staff and your company.