Career dissatisfaction is a growing challenge in today’s world, which is why we’ve decided to do things differently at Weight Watchers.
When ask,“Tell me about your career goals.” How often have you said this to a person you’re managing or mentoring, only to get a blank stare in return? Perhaps the person confides that they don’t know what their goals should be, or even whether there are opportunities to advance at your company. How do you begin to provide support?
If you’ve had a good relationship with a mentor, you know that mentoring can make a positive difference in someone’s career. Being a mentor can be good for your career as well.
Your workplace may have a mentoring program and assign you a mentee. Or you might just decide you have a lot to offer, and volunteer to be a mentor.
A mentor and mentee don’t need to be in the same workplace or even in the same field. The main thing is that some aspects of your career, such as your personal skills or problem solving abilities, make you worth learning from.
Becoming a mentor can be a rewarding outcome of your own successful career. Be wise about whom you choose to mentor. Set clear boundaries about what you expect. If you are open, ethical and supportive, you can establish a relationship with your mentee that will be a source of inspiration for both of you.
As a mentor you should support your mentee. help your mentee develop a career that reflects their potential and goals offer wisdom, knowledge, experience, constructive criticism, connections and resources.
Focus on your mentee’s overall career directions rather than on day-to-day concerns by set an example for the level of success your mentee hopes to achieve
Expect a mentee to describe his or her:
Strengths, weaknesses and goals
Ideas, conflicts and decisions
Reasons for wanting to learn from you.
Good questions to ask: “What do you want to achieve next? How will you know you’ve achieved it?” “Let’s gamify this goal. What’s level 1? How about level 2?” “What do you want to name this next milestone?” “How might you share what you’ve learned?”
Before offering solutions, we’d like to propose a radical diagnosis: The problem lives not in a lack of career opportunities, but rather in the very concept of a career. We are suffering from the career myth — a delusional belief in the outdated idea of linear career progression.
Consider the etymology of the word “care
Focus on transferable skills. We train our managers to help their direct reports develop transferable skills, not climb a ladder. These are skills that increase employability because they can be applied to a variety of roles and situations now and in the future (for example, communication, self-management, writing, public speaking). Rather than investing in one path, we tell employees, they should diversify their career capital. To provide some direction, we also want managers to advertise the skills that are most wanted on the team.