Research and Insights in The Insurance World

We conduct our own research and interview industry leaders on topics of interest to insurance industry professionals like you. Here you’ll find reports, interviews, articles and more on key trends we’ve identified and where the insurance industry in Canada is headed. We also present our insights on the human resources issues that matter to industry leaders, like employee motivation, improving team performance in the workplace and recruiting, hiring and retaining insurance employees.


The Value of Mentoring for Insurance Industry Leaders

Published on Mar. 19, 2015

At its root level, mentoring is essential because it demonstrates to a young professional that someone cares about their wellbeing. In other words, they never feel completely alone to contend with their day-to-day challenges. Simple things that seem easy or straightforward to senior professionals may be a complete mystery to a young person. Mentors provide their mentees with experienced friendship/involvement to help navigate any number of situations and troubled waters.

Why should insurance leaders get involved in mentorship?

Here’s what I’ve seen and experienced throughout my insurance career, and now more than ever in my role as Managing Director at DGA Careers:

Provide Support

  • Mentors help keep mentees engaged in life and business.
  • Those who meet regularly with their mentors are much more likely than their peers to find positive and creative ways to effectively deal with challenges.
  • Mentors can walk with mentees through difficult issues and can utilize their experience to help improve their mentees’ interpersonal and business skills, through objective discussion.

Breed Success and Instill Confidence

  • Mentors enhance a young professional’s self-esteem by demonstrating they are valued and worthy of their time investment.
  • Young professionals who meet regularly with their mentors are much more likely than their peers to reach senior and managerial roles in less time.
  • Mentors provide a degree of accountability and responsibility towards achieving successful goals.
  • Mentors help mentees strengthen their communication skills and achieve leadership qualities.

Help Develop Careers

  • Mentors can assist in setting career goals and encouraging mentees to follow through.
  • Mentors use their personal contacts to help young professionals meet senior industry professionals and locate job opportunities.
  • Mentors introduce young people to their professional networks, resources and organizations.
  • Mentors show their mentees how to find the best opportunities within the industry.

Mentoring Works: What We See

Statistics and personal experience confirms that mentoring works.

  • The strongest benefit, and most consistent outcome for young mentees, is happier work engagement and a much faster rise up through the corporate ranks.
  • We continually witness mentees’ gains in social acceptance, positive career attitudes and overall promotion ability that is significantly higher than non-mentees.
  • In addition to the personal benefits for specific individuals, mentored professionals stay longer with their employers and are more harmonious contributors within their respective work environments. Employers benefit from a more collegial workplace.

Overall, mentoring programs can be beneficial for all employees. Tailoring the training and support to match the individual is also essential. There are as many styles of mentoring as there are personalities. The only key ingredient is a true compassionate caring for the mentee. In other words, mentors must be passionate about helping others and truly being of service.

What do the Numbers Tell us?

  • In terms of educational achievement, mentored youth have better school attendance; a better chance of going on to higher education; and better attitudes toward school.
  • In terms of health and safety, mentoring appears to help prevent substance abuse and reduce some negative youth behaviours.
  • On the social and emotional development front, taking part in mentoring promotes positive social attitudes and relationships. Mentored youth tend to trust their parents more and communicate better with them.

Attain Achievement

Mentoring is a positive young professional development strategy that supports the individual’s growth but helps companies retain their valued workforce. Research has shown that mentoring has significant positive effects on employee workplace engagement. Young professionals in mentoring relationships present better attitudes and behaviours at work and are more likely to rise through the ranks faster and more effectively than their counterparts.

Given that the more challenges a young employee faces the more likely he/she is to resign or change careers, we can extrapolate that mentorship aimed at reducing and removing these risk factors will be more successful at retaining these valuable trainees. Mentoring by a caring professional over a prolonged period of time has shown effectiveness in combating these departure risk factors. Experience has revealed a correlation between a young professional’s career satisfaction with quality mentoring relationship and positive outcomes in career.

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