Innovative workplaces understand the importance of adopting new practices in company culture and employee engagement. One such practice, mentoring, is not a new idea but it has recently taken center stage in companies across the world.
Mentoring acclimates new employees to a workplace by pairing them up with experienced employees. The experienced employee imparts job experience and company knowledge on the new employee, as well as cultivates talents and dispels doubts. The inherent intimacy of these workplace relationships, forged through support and development, creates a strong sense of rapport and camaraderie between the experienced and the new employees.
Protection 1, an innovative company in the security industry, was recently deemed a “happiest place on earth” by SDM Magazine, and we would be remiss if we did not give some credit to the P1 Mentor Program for the accolade. The P1 Mentor Program began in 2012 as a part of a focus on culture through recruiting, hiring and on-boarding revitalization. Leaders drew on backgrounds in campus recreation, etc. to create a unique pilot program in the Wichita, KS call center. Originally, new employees were paired with an experienced employee at the beginning of the training period and were mentored through the first six months of employment.
The most recent tweak to the program’s structure has new employees paired with an experienced employee after 90 days of employment, and the mentoring relationship lasts for three months. The current structure allows the experienced employees to engage new employees during a period when the new employees are more settled into their daily routines. To date, the P1 Mentor Program has trained 42 mentors has mentored seven classes of new employees in Customer Service, Monitoring and Inside Sales.
Mentoring provides four major advantages to companies that leverage it as a workplace practice, including here at Protection 1: employee development, career advancement, higher motivation levels and lower turnover rates. And it is relatively easy to start a similar mentor program at any workplace. Leaders have the flexibility to mirror an already established program or to build a new one. Regardless of the program that is put into place, the keys to its success are found in the leaders that manage the program, the mentors that embody it and the culture that sustains it.
Check out our career opportunities page if you are interested in working for the “happiest place on earth”.