Mentoring in Action
Authors: David Megginson, David Clutterbuck, Bob Garvey, Paul Stokes and Ruth Garrett-Harris
From: Kogan Page
Ten years have passed since the first edition of this book, and its material has been updated accordingly. It gives an overview of the mentoring climate and, to encompass newer trends such as e-mentoring, the authors explore all the practical aspects of setting up a mentoring culture and managing mentoring relationships.
Their advice and guidance work well to give shape to a potentially nebulous concept, while the lengthy opening chapter on mentoring frame-works is watertight. But this is not to say the book is stifling: the authors leave plenty of room for thought on transition, change and transformation, which they say characterises mentoring.
There are plenty of reminders that a mentoring relationship should be one of integrity: mentors are told that as a matter of course, they should reflect on their ethical approach.
Material is supported by helpful checklists that tackle key areas for reflection, but the authors have not reduced mentoring frameworks to a ‘painting by numbers’ activity.
I particularly liked their allusions to “the mystery of mentoring moments”, which give an insight into how people learn what they learn.
About two-thirds of this meaty book is devoted to case studies, split into organisational and individual examples. They are an eclectic mix, ranging from voluntary schemes to executive learning, and cover schemes from around the world. There are also some personal accounts of what it is like to be a mentee, and how one mentoring relationship has been sustained for an amazing 22 years.
Such a mass of material could overwhelm the reader if it were not for the rigorous evaluations. These appear at the end of each case study on the lessons learned for the mentor and the mentee, and from the programme.
The book finishes as well as it began, with solid advice on applying the lessons.
Overall, it makes for an all-encompassing read, as it gives a 360-degree view of the mentoring process.
The authors have high expectations of anyone hoping to implement a mentoring system. By pointing out the measures that need to be in place to ensure mentee safety and networks, the authors make it clear that mentoring is not a cheap shortcut to developing people.
Useful? Four stars
Well-written? Four stars
Value for money? Five stars