The MI Program
Mentoring Internship Programs allow Mentees of all ages to engage in productive, meaningful work under the direction of Supervisor/Mentors who:
- Creates a responsible position in which the Mentee takes on useful projects;
- Supervises the person with a focus on enabling the person to learn now just what to do but also how and why;
- Serves a learning coach so the Mentee understands her/his strengths/weaknesses and learns about career options, corporate strategy, teamwork, culture, and communications.
The Mentoring Internship Program can be scaled to fit the size of an organization. In a solo-entrepreneurship, the owner can be the mentor. In a Fortune 500 firm, a Project Coordinator within the HR or other department can organize the program with several Mentors working with Mentees, with formal onboarding and evaluation components. Indeed, it can become a self-sustainable system with a measurable Return-on-Investment.
It can be operated year-round, especially if coordinated with the school fall, spring and summer semesters, as college students and adults in advanced education programs will find them useful. For instance, our founder, has been operating such programs for various employers (public and private companies, non-profits and government agencies) serving 650+ global interns to date.
Today’s workplace introduces new challenges, which companies need to handle. For instance:
- A key component to mentoring is supervision; you want to catch people as they make mistakes as well as get things right. This is more difficult in a remote and hybrid workplace.
- In today’s five-generation-workplace, when a retirement-age person is the Mentee, the Mentor is likely to be younger. Therefore, for some people, these new age-related roles may, at first, be challenging. (Calling this “reverse mentoring” is incorrect; mentoring always is related to expertise, where a person with greater expertise shares it with someone who wants to learn. It’s independent of age. As workers adopt second and later careers, it is likely that supervisors and mentors will be younger!)
- Identifying career paths for people looking for flexible schedules will also require extra thought.