As a follow-through learning session from the successful PSTD Mentorship Summit in June, PSTD offered a webinar on Mentoring in the Lens of a Leader on July 1, 2021. Irene Marie Salinas- Isleta, PSTD’s Mentoring Chair Committee and PSTD Board of Trustee, Treasurer shared her knowledge about topic that gave a different perspective on how mentoring should be seen as a strategic intervention to support succession planning, employee development and engagement.
Attended by 14 participants from various industries, the webinar gave the learners a good understanding on how mentoring works from individual mentoring level to organizational level and how unique it is from other company programs like coaching, training, and others. The session was highly interactive because of the group activities facilitated to allow the participants to share their insights and mentoring experiences in their own organizations. To have a better understanding of the impact of a mentoring program, Irene presented data and foreign research that prove that mentorship is an effective strategy that is widely embraced nowadays. A striking takeaway that was shared in the session is Irene’s insight on how mentorship has helped many employees cope with stress in this pandemic. She shared that regardless of the shift from face-to-face mentoring to e-mentoring online, mentees have appreciated more the value of the program as it helped them manage the difficulties brought by the pandemic. The examples cited are about being mentored on how to work effectively despite the stress brought by the pandemic. Another interesting point of view discussed too is the influence of our culture to the mentorship style used over the years. The concept of reverse mentorship somehow gave the learners an aha moment during the discussion. Reverse mentorship refers to the act of switching roles from the mentor being a mentee and vice versa. This is often observed when a mentee can guide the mentor on areas that the mentor is challenged with. An example of which is a mentee teaching the mentor on the use of technology using different gadgets or tools that a younger mentee may be more knowledgeable on.
Keeping to the theme of the webinar, Irene discussed bits and pieces of what leaders need to know about mentorship. She also shared perspectives and expectations both from the mentees and mentors so there is a complete appreciation on the roles involved in the program. A video excerpt from the Mentoring Summit was played during the session to learn lessons from Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas’ (BSP) mentoring program.
With the structured breakout activities taking the learners to a journey on understanding mentorship to the actual high-level conceptualization mentorship program, it was evident from the work of each group that the webinar’s objectives were achieved. Irene’s feedback on each group’s work gave guidance to the learners on how they should refine further their proposals that can serve as a good starting point for them to build their own mentoring program in their own organizations. At the end of the webinar, the participants were given a copy of PSTD’s Mentoring Guidebook to serve as their reference to continue learning about mentoring. Irene also reminded the attendees of PSTD’s services in supporting organizations with their mentorship program.