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Lucie Mitchell

Sift Media

Freelance journalist and former editor of HRZone

Read more about Lucie Mitchell

Use mentoring to hold on to talent, employers told


Employees are not being given enough mentoring opportunities despite the fact that it could “stem” the talent drain, according to new research.

The report, by HR services group Penna Plc, found that a fifth of the 2,000 employees questioned are not currently mentoring or being mentored, even though they would be keen to do so, while a further 40% have never been given the opportunity.

Penny de Valk, managing director of Penna’s Talent Practice, warned that employers who don’t provide mentoring schemes are “at risk of losing talent” as employees will simply look for learning opportunities elsewhere.

“It’s no coincidence that 70% of Fortune 500 businesses run mentoring schemes, and 75% of executives said it played a key role in their personal career success, as it helps both mentor and mentee to gain new skills and stay engaged with the business.

“Mentoring not only provides the mentee with the opportunity to learn new skills, and mentors the chance to hone theirs, but it also helps businesses to enhance their talent pipeline – and stem drain – by equipping the next generation of leaders with the knowledge needed.”

Other findings revealed that the most common reason for becoming a mentor or mentee was to acquire new skills, with the least popular objective being to find a new job.

However, 24% of mentors questioned said that they had to take on the role as it was required by their employer, while 30% of mentees reported a failed relationship with their mentor as the process had lost momentum.

Employers worried about the costs of mentoring needn’t do so, as the research found that 64% of mentees do not want an external mentor, indicating that schemes could be introduced cost-effectively in-house.

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Lucie Mitchell

Freelance journalist and former editor of HRZone

Read more from Lucie Mitchell

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