Källhammer - Dirigir Coaching & Consulting


Why are Mentorship programs so important to both new executives and established leaders?

Ulrica Maria Källhammer - Dirigir Coaching and Consulting

Here is a little story from my background
When I had come a good way into my career, I got a high position in a company where my executions would mean big changes for the company and the employees.

A few years earlier, I had been in the same situation but in a much larger international corporation and I was employed in the middle of an extensive reorganization of an entire corporation. The corporation would go from being divided into market areas to now being defined by business areas. Several thousands employees were forced to apply for their positions, again, both managers and employees. I got the job I was applying for and was grateful for it even though it meant 4 out of 5 travel days per week, several of my management colleagues were left out, because the business areas were fewer than the market areas.

For the employees, it became unsustainable for many, they were suddenly forced to travel almost 800 km to their workplaces, which were now scattered within the business area that ran throughout Sweden. Parents of young children would suddenly find themselves traveling from their home and family to their office, which could be 400 km away one week and maybe 600 km away another week. And that was where I was. I was the new Operating Director of the largest business area they now belonged to, and my job was to defend the expectations the corporation that paid their salaries now had on them. It was a difficult situation for all of the executives, because how could I motivate a parent of young children that it was reasonable to travel 400 km to work?

Back then I really would have needed a mentor as support who had been in a similar situation in their career that I could turn to for support.

What I learned from the chaos and difficulties that followed when top management demanded major changes without at the same time offering support to the managers who would carry out the mission - gave me valuable experiences and insights that I have carried with me forward in my career.

A few years after that experience, it was time again, I started a high position in a company where my executions would mean big changes, but this time I was prepared - I made sure I got 2 different mentors who could be a support for me, were I could say out loud my thoughts I had and just offer me a safe confidential place where I could talk about the different phases of the work.

Now I have come a long way from these experiences, I'm now both tougher and smarter in how I take on challenges in work life. And what help I can demand as a leader. But the fact remains, to have a mentor on your side, whether it's difficult new position, big changes, new challenges such as starting a company - you have a "1000 times" greater chance of succeeding, if you have a mentor at your side. That's why I worked as a volunteer mentor a few years ago and that's why I now in my company offer mentor programs designed to suit all leaders and all companies.
A mentorship can be an association between equally experienced but with knowledgeable people in different areas, where the mentor is a support in a certain area, such as reorganization or terminations. And it can also be a relationship between a more experienced person and a less experienced person in order to get information and support in a specific mentor program designed to help and develop the person in their goals, visions and ideas.
Mentors need to be different for different people and different phases. Sometimes a mentor must dare to be the one who gives you honest constructive criticism, who asks you difficult questions about where you are going and asks you to think through your business idea again and again. A mentor should be a support, a safe confidential space, a source of experience and knowledge and also a tough communicator of messages that sometimes have to be heard.
Dirigir Coaching and Consulting offers different Mentor programs, contact us for more information