What the Professional Mentor-Mentee relationship looks like in 2019 An important part of professional development in the workplace that is often overlooked is having a mentor. Many people look for mentors to help develop their personal lives, but often neglect professional relationships. A new survey by Olivet Nazarene University found that while 76% of American workers think that professional mentors are important, currently only 37% actually have one. That’s a huge different between wanting a mentor and actually have one.
The survey asked 3,000 American workers about their feelings on having a mentor in the workplace. Let’s take a deeper dive into the results of the survey. The first question of the survey asked whether people have ever had a professional mentor. Over half of respondents (56%) said they had a professional mentor previously with only 44% saying they had never had a professional mentor. Also asked was whether or not American workers actually had a mentor currently. Only 37% of respondents said that they currently have a mentor and surprisingly enough almost 10% of respondents said they weren’t sure if they currently had a mentor because the relationship itself was not defined.
The next part of the survey looked at the experience level of professionals with mentors. The largest percentage of people who have mentors are junior-level employees. This makes sense because most people who are younger and new to the professional working environment are more likely to seek out a mentor than someone who is more established in their career path. The survey found that only 8% of workers who identify themselves as “senior-level” currently have mentors. Interestingly enough it was pretty well agreed upon that most people are completely sure that their mentor would formally identify as their mentor (82%). One of the bigger parts of the analysis was a breakdown of which industries have the most mentors.
Would you have guessed that science was the number one industry with over 66% of people in that field having mentors currently? I know that wasn’t my first guess. Listed below is a breakdown of the industries that have the most mentors: 1. Science (66%) 2. Government employees (59%) 3. Education and secondary education (57%) 4. Marketing, Advertising and PR (56%) 5. Nonprofit and social services (55%) 6. Engineering and STEM (52%) 7. Professional services (51%) 8.
Finance (45%) 9. Skilled labor and trends (44%) 10. Healthcare (43%) Among the other areas looked at in the survey was how the mentor-mentee relationship started. Which person in the relationship is most likely to start the relationship? Surprisingly enough its neither! 61% of respondents said that the relationship developed naturally and without either person asking to mentor. Another point from that survey that was surprising to me was that most mentor/mentee relationships meet less than once per month.
Most people prefer to talk over than the phone rather than meeting in person. Most people found that it was easy enough to schedule time with their mentor if they wanted. The full analysis on mentor/mentee relationships from Olivet Nazarene University can be seen here.
infographic by: online.olivet.edu