Reflect: Creating a Mentoring Culture

Many people ask how do I get a mentoring program started?

This is a question that has been discussed for more than a decade in Early Childhood settings, whether we are talking about collegial mentoring or mentoring students the conversation is the same.

There is a fine line between a formal mentoring program and informal mentoring and for many mentoring is already occurring in their  workplaces. So what are we asking then? What we are really referring to is what can be called intentional mentoring.  If we apply the reflective model to this concept how would we begin?

It is about creating a culture of being that promotes relationships.

Brené Brown’s graphic provides the visual essence of what this might look and feel like. (click on Brené Brown to go directly to her work)


In Creating a Mentoring Culture by Lois Zachary (2005) she outlines a cultural audit that consist of 50 best practice items that work together to create a vibrant mentoring culture. Among them they include:

  • Is learning an organizational priority?
  • Is mentoring supported by allowing time for mentoring to occur within the work day?
  • Is Mentoring aligned with leadership development?
  • Is Mentoring consistently creating positive value for the organization and its people?
  • Is excellence in Mentoring recognized, rewarded and celebrated?

To-make-a-difference-in2Reflect on your relationships and you may discover that you already have beginnings of a mentoring  program.