Saturday, February 21, 2009

To choose or not to choose: matching participants in an eMentoring program

This is the second post about matching participants in formal mentoring programs. I would be very interested to hear your opinion in how I should match participants in the eMentoring program I am managing.

Here are the three options - what do you think would be most appropriate, keeping in mind the issues of matching that I discussed in my previous post.

  1. I match the mentors and mentees myself - I take all the information that the participants send me and match the skills and experience of the mentors to the goals and needs of the mentee. This is done before the mentoring workshops so that they can meet face-to-face, and then go on to develop their mentoring contracts.
  2. I ask the mentors to provide biographical details and photos and I post them on a web site. The mentees choose who they want as mentor. This is done before the eMentoring workshops. Then they meet at the workshop etc.
  3. They meet up at the workshop and choose then. The problem with this is that they will not all be at the workshop - I will be running small workshops of no more than 10 mentors which will restrict the choice for the mentee. And what if all the mentees go for the same mentor?
What do you think is the most effective way of matching that causes the least amount of trouble for me, yet meets the needs of the mentees and mentors?

Image: 'match bouquet' ḃĭțʑḯ


Jo said...

give your mentees the opportunity to express preferences of 2-3 possible mentors - stress that for logistical reaosns they may not be able to have this mentor. Then do your matching bearing those prefs in mind

Jo said...

Mentees will take much more ownership and have greater acceptance if they have a "say" ie some input into the mentor that they have

Sarah Stewart said...

Yes, Jo. I am starting to think the same way myself. Thanks for that.