5 Missing Pieces From Your Mentoring Program Promotional Message

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Mentoring Champions come in all shapes and sizes; in this article, we’ll explore the roles of People Leaders or Opinion Leaders specifically. Whilst it’s important to remember that they’re not the only types of Mentoring Champions, they can help influence other team members to participate in your mentoring program with the right key message.

So how do we shape our message from our People and Opinion Leaders (a.k.a. Mentoring Champions) before we launch a program so that we can help inspire your people to get involved?

To facilitate any change, whether in participation, attitude, or culture, a change agent—or Mentoring Champion—needs credibility.

To keep it simple, we’ve broken it down into five key messages your Mentoring Champion should touch on in order to ensure their message packs the most punch. These messages are designed to help your people feel ready to embrace and participate in your mentoring program.

These five key message domains—discrepancy, efficacy, appropriateness, principal support, and personal valence—were identified by Armenakis et al (1999) to help leaders successfully encourage adoption and change.
But what do they mean? Below, we’ll dive deeper into how each of these can be deployed by your Mentoring Champion and shift your mentoring program further toward success.

5 Ways to Accelerate Program Participation

1. Discrepancy: Why is mentoring needed or necessary?

The first question you want to answer is “Why mentoring?” Armenakis et al identifies that focussing your messaging on why mentoring is needed, necessary, or important can help would-be participants make that mental jump. Therefore, have Mentoring Champions share their own stories of personal development through mentoring. How has it enriched their lives? How has it helped them develop both personally and professionally?

2. Appropriateness: Why is mentoring right for us?

This messaging should logically communicate why mentoring is right for your organisation. Why have you, as an organisation, decided to invest in a mentoring program in the first place? What are your organisational goals for the program? Where are you now and where do you need or want to be? What business and people benefits do you hope the program will bring?

3. Efficacy: How will mentoring help?

According to Armenakis et al, “efficacy refers to sentiments regarding confidence in one’s ability to succeed.” Therefore, provide confidence to would-be participants that when they participate in the mentoring program, they can acquire the knowledge, skills, and abilities to successfully be a good mentor or mentee. That’s because Mentorloop has them covered with plenty of resources, tips, and tricks they can access along their mentoring journey. 

Pro Tip: Describe to your participants what they can expect from joining the program, including the time commitment and the support they will receive. If your people are new to mentoring, this can be a daunting initiative to join. Giving your people context will help alleviate any fears.

4. Principal Support: Will this actually happen?

Employees may be skeptical of change efforts as they may have seen many of them stall in the past. Therefore, they need to see a clear demonstration of support—that’s where your Mentoring Champions come in. Would-be participants need to see that the change agents (Mentoring Champions) are walking the talk. Who of your influential people are already participating in mentoring?

Pro Tip: Don’t just use your Mentoring Champions to promote your program when you’re recruiting participants; instead, why not use them throughout the program? Share their stories as they go, including any advice, challenges, and achievements. Prove to your people that mentoring is indeed a process.

5. Valence: What’s in it for me?

Would-be participants must believe they will benefit extrinsically or intrinsically from embracing the change and participating in the mentoring program. Therefore, help them answer the question, “What’s in it for me?” Thankfully, we’ve got some great resources to help you articulate this.

Pro Tip: Use Mentoring Stories to keep the momentum going. At various points of the mentoring journey, Mentorloop helps you surface positive mentoring experiences that you can share with others. This can be used to inspire, educate, or reassure that wherever they are in their journey, success is waiting just around the corner.

By having your Mentoring Champions leverage these types of messages throughout your mentoring program, you won’t only get more participants to sign up, but will keep them actively engaged throughout the program.

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Em is our Marketing Manager at Mentorloop. That's a lot of 'm's! | She is passionate about crafting messages, crafternoons and craft beer.

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