How Mentoring Can Make The Difference
"Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me... and I learn.”
"You are the human form of Xanax, do you know that? "
That's what a co-worker called me the other day, and it may very well be the best professional compliment I've ever received in my career.
For the last three months, I've been fulfilling the role of mentor to another associate who was brand new to her leadership position. Her job and responsibility was to take over a team of customer service individuals from a departing manager who was leaving the company for another opportunity.
The good news was that meant a promotion and bump in pay for Lucy, both welcome changes for any manager wanna-be who has career aspirations with a current or future employer. Having been a rising star on the team under the exiting manager, she was intricately aware of the company culture and performance of the crew she was poised to assume. That was a bonus as she could then hit the ground running.
The flip side was the group had issues in both performance metrics and personnel management. Neither issue outweighed the other's importance, but there were opportunities and needed change in both categories that would only serve to strengthen the position and value of the business to the client. Some work had to be done, and Lucy was excited and equal to the task at hand.
What she didn't expect was taking on clean-up duty as the departing manager had - for lack of a better description - checked out months prior to leaving. Having been promoted internally from that very team, gaining true respect was going to be a issue. Moving from an in-the-trenches employee to "The Boss" over the very group you've served with can be difficult and intimidating for an inexperienced leader who is tasked with inevitable