How to Engage your Employees: Start With an Online Degree
December 3, 2020
Do your employees care about their work? It’s surprising how many don’t. But can a company do anything about that? If you want to take steps forward to engage employees in their career through managing and mentoring, online college may be for you. Grace College’s online degree in business will help strengthen your credibility, advance your career toward meaningful, engaging work, and inspire those around you. Check out our online master’s in business administration today!
There are plenty of reasons for low employee engagement. Gallup’s research shows that managers account for at least 70 percent of variance in employee engagement scores, and given these figures, “it makes sense that most managers are not creating environments in which employees feel motivated or even comfortable.” Forbes cited a lack of employee recognition, lack of transparency, and disconnection from peers.
One way to develop and maintain talent is to establish mentoring in organizations. Mentors can provide their peers with leadership, guidance and support, which can make a difference in employee engagement, loyalty and production.
To learn more about how an online degree could be your next step, read on!
“Informal mentoring is a natural component of relationships that occurs throughout the society, in the workplace, as well as in social, professional, and family activities,” according to the Journal of Leadership Education. “Informal mentoring occurs in a relationship between two people where one gains insight, knowledge, wisdom, friendship, and support from the other. Either person may initiate the mentoring relationship, the mentor to help the other, the protégé to gain wisdom from a trusted person.”
A study in the Academy of Management Journal found that organizational informal mentoring is more beneficial than formal mentoring. Mentors in this type of relationship were more likely to engage in positive psychosocial activities like coaching, facilitating social interactions, role modeling, and providing friendship.
One major finding is that people who were informally mentored were much happier with their mentors than those who had formal mentors. This is likely a result of the structure of the relationship. Developing an informal mentoring relationship involves both people identifying with each other and the person wanting to emulate the mentor. And due to the selective nature of the relationship, an informal mentoring relationship can last for years.
Formal mentoring differs from informal mentoring as it develops within a program and process established for mentoring to take place. It’s usually short-term (one year), with the hope it will develop informally for longer. Mentors are usually volunteers, but they’re still chosen, and both parties of the mentoring relationship may not choose each other.
There are many benefits of formal mentoring. Employees who are mentored are impacted in terms of professional growth, career advancement, and mobility. Mentors take pride in the other person’s accomplishments and the mentor is invigorated and renews his or her commitment to the job and the profession.
Large companies across the country have established formal mentoring programs. Here are a few examples of formal mentoring programs, according to Monster.
- Time Warner Cable matches mentors and mentees for a year and provides mentor/mentee training, quarterly meetings with HR, executive-level sponsors and other mentorship programs.
- Intel matches employees with mentors (in-person or virtual) based on skills and interests. A questionnaire is used to help the company determine the best fit for teaching skills the prospective mentee wants to learn.
- GE has a two-year program that develops employees’ sales and marketing skills.
- Deloitte has a mentoring program that pairs employees from under-represented populations with mentors from the partner, principal, or director level (who commit to at least two years).
Benefits of Mentoring in Business
Organizations benefit in tangible and intangible ways, according to the Journal of Leadership Education.
- More employees successfully complete probationary periods.
- It creates enthusiasm, camaraderie and professionalism.
- It impacts the entire culture of an organization, promoting organizational values, norms and standards.
- It helps organizations achieve their strategic goals and prepares a leadership team to accomplish its objectives.
- Improves employee performance, increases commitment to the organization, improves flow of organizational information and supports leadership and management development.
Other research and experts echo these types of benefits. Inc.com argues that companies need mentoring programs to show that the company cares, to contribute to a better-trained and engaged workforce, as well as to decrease employee turnover and produce high job satisfaction.
Growing as a Leader
Grace College’s online degree programs provide students with the knowledge and skills needed to positively impact an organization. Not to mention, all Grace College programs and degrees highly esteem mentor relationships between faculty and students. The Grace College Master of Business Administration online degree is constructed with an intentional applied emphasis. Consistent with learning-by-doing, course assignments allow students to use course concepts in their current employment setting. This allows students to quickly develop an initial proficiency with the concepts being covered. It also allows students to demonstrate to their employers the value-added nature of the program.
Grace’s fully online bachelor’s degree in business administration focuses on the skills and tools graduates need to adapt and excel in the business world. This degree completion program is designed for students balancing personal commitments while pursuing an education. It is priced substantially below most degree completion programs and can be completed in as little as 16 months.
Be mentored now to become a mentor in your workplace!