Dr. Robin teaches Mentoring-Developmental Relationships sessions, and has also co-designed a year-long organizational mentoring program for new directors, with her friend and colleague Stacy Blake-Beard.
MENTORING & DEVELOPMENTAL RELATIONSHIPS SESSION
In shorter sessions Dr. Robin shares research about mentoring as a process, and how developmental relationships within your network can help you strategically cover mentoring roles, even if you do not have a formal mentor or sponsor. Participants then analyze their networks to see where there are gaps, and strategize about how to initiate and cultivate relationships to fill those gaps. The mentoring roles are based on the research of Kathy Kram, addressing career and psycho-social functions. Dr. Robin also addresses research and insights re: mentoring that cross race, gender, and diversity dimensions. Participants leave with a plan to address the gaps in their network.
The year-long program starts with participants setting professional, leadership, and personal goals. Each participant also takes a Birkman Method assessment. Throughout the program the information from that assessment allows them to get to know themselves and each other better without negative judgements. During the live session (3-days) mentors and mentees get to know each other, learn more about mentoring and developmental relationships, learn to manage boundaries and expectations, discuss their S.M.A.R.T.E.R. goals, discuss relationship norms, and develop their action plans. They commit to monthly meetings (with structured support), to 3 additional webinars (hosted by Drs. Johnson and Blake-Beard), to accountability surveys, and to tracking their progress on their goals using Done Lists. In the years we’ve been doing this program and tracking its performance, mentors and mentees report they are strongly satisfied with the mentoring experience, they have clearly-defined goals that they are achieving through this program, and while challenged to manage their time for meetings – they rose to the challenge.