WiBF Mentoring for Success Program’s Secret Sauce

WiBF’s 2023 Mentoring for Success Program, was successfully launched in-person in Sydney and Melbourne!

Lots of great tips were shared for our new mentors and new mentees during the session, which kicked off with the Mentor Masterclass, followed by the official launch.

It was an exceptional event where mentors and mentees were invited to meet for the first time face-to-face and establish meaningful connections. The room was filled with vibrant energy as participants seized this chance to get to know one another over light refreshments.

‘I have been a mentor on this program many times but still learn at each session as the art of mentoring is subtle and complex’ (2022 Mentor)

With a focus on cultivating strong mentor-mentee relationships, this program sets itself apart from traditional mentoring approaches. The program is delivered in partnership with Serendis Leadership, through a combination of in-person workshops and a unique digital platform. The overall aim of the program is to deliver a long-lasting impact on mentees’ careers and mentors’ leadership skills.

What makes our program different from traditional mentoring?

“When we set out to design this program for WiBF, we were determined to make it different. We wanted it to be much more than an introduction between two people who will have a series of ‘networking chats’,” said Program Founder, Maud Lindley.

Traditional mentoring often falls short in creating real impact and growth for mentees. Merely engaging in casual conversations based on the mentors’ personal experiences rarely leads to significant development. To overcome this limitation, WiBF’s Mentoring for Success Program offers a series of group workshops and a cutting-edge digital platform called MentorKey.

“Our observation of ‘casual mentoring’ was underwhelming. Mentees would traditionally prepare questions and their mentors would respond based on their own career experience. This did not create real impact or growth for mentees. And we saw too many relationships ending awkwardly after two meetings. We wanted our program to have a long-lasting effect on our mentee’s career but also on our mentor’s leadership skills,” continued Maud.

To deliver this, our participants have access to:

A series of group workshops that provide powerful coaching frameworks on a range of career and leadership development topics

Our unique digital platform www.mentorkey.com.au that delivers real time, tailored support to mentees and mentors to reflect and plan for each of their session

How do we achieve this?

Both the workshops and MentorKey support our participants to drive their mentoring partnership around three mentoring pillars of success:

Pillar 1 – Identify clear goals for the program

  • What will you achieve through this program that you would not have achieved on your own this year?
  • Our mentees are challenged to answer this question within the first couple of weeks of the program. Setting goals can seem tedious, oversimplistic or daunting but it is the most powerful way to ensure the mentoring conversations are impactful and relevant. By setting clear intentions, the pairs focus their conversations on short-term achievable insights and actions.

Pillar 2 – Mentor to ask more questions than provide answers

  • Each individual is unique. Our mentees already have 10 to 15 years’ experience in their career. At this stage of your career, you want to define your own path and be guided through powerful questions. We equip our mentors to ask the right questions, challenge their mentee with perspectives they have not considered before and provide them with the space and time to chart their own strategy.

Pillar 3 – Take action in between sessions

  • The secret to a successful mentoring partnership lies in what happens between mentoring conversations. Are mentees taking real action based on the insights generated by their mentor? This differentiates a series of coffee chats and true mentorship. Our participants are encouraged to wrap up each session with a commitment to taking one or two actions to bring to life their session insights. These could be further reflections, facing into difficult conversations, leading people differently, connecting with senior stakeholders…anything that will accelerate the mentee towards their aspirations.

‘The structure and support provided by Serendis on this program made it a uniquely valuable experience for me’ (2022 Mentee)

This year, we take immense pride in having 110 participants from over 21 organisations join our Mentoring for Success program.

The diversity and wealth of knowledge brought by these professionals from different organisations amplifies the program’s value and offers unique perspectives for growth and development.

Could this program be for you?

You can find more information about the next program intake here: Mentoring Program – Women in Banking and Finance (WiBF)

In the meantime, you may also be interested in discovering Mentorkey: www.mentorkey.com.au.

Maud Lindley, Founder
Serendis Leadership & MentorKey

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