Mentoring Program Launch

Monday 13th January 2014

GBA Newsletter

MetLie foundationThe GBA Mentoring Program is designed to support banks with design or early phase Women’s Market Programs learn from banks with advanced Programs. Glynis Rankin, CEO of Creative Métier, an international consulting firm specializing in designing and delivering bespoke mentoring and coaching programs for the financial sector, is the Program Director, and spoke with the Global Banking Alliance about the Program and her vision for its effectiveness.

GBA: Tell us a bit about your personal experience with building executive capacity as well as institutional capacity?

Glynis Rankin: We’ve worked with many senior executives through systematic provision of coaching and mentoring, over the last 7 years. These programs have demonstrated significant improvements in individual’s performance with measurable business results. We believe that mentoring is a highly effective way of working to help senior leaders get results.

GBA: With a 44% growth in membership in 2013, the GBA has many banks with early stage Women’s Market Programs. Tell us why you think peer mentoring is an effective approach to mobilizing the talent resident with GBA banks?

Glynis Rankin: If we think about how the GBA has developed, those institutions with developed programs, obviously Westpac being a great example, have supported those with nascent programs such as BLC, through hosting Study Tours and providing mentoring on an informal basis. The GBA Mentoring Program is just formalizing that knowledge sharing, doing it in a way that is very cost effective in terms of time and doing it on a larger scale so that more members can benefit from it.

GBA: What is mentoring and why is it important?

Glynis Rankin: Mentoring is a supportive relationship between an individual who already has experience in an area that s/he is mentoring about, to an individual who has less experience. Typically it is used in a career development context where a senior person mentors a junior person. In this context, we are using it between organizations to share knowledge and expertise about Women’s Market Program design and implementation.

GBA: What does the research say about the effectiveness of mentoring?

Glynis Rankin: There is quite a lot of hard evidence that confirms the effectiveness of well-designed mentoring programs for career development. And although in the GBA case we are using mentoring in a different way, to share knowledge and expertise about developing and implementing a specific business strategy, we believe it will be a very effective application of a well-tried and tested method for supporting individual and institutional development. One of the real benefits of mentoring is that it provides real support in real time when it is needed, so that it is highly targeted and effective.

GBA: What is the difference between mentoring and coaching?

Glynis Rankin: There are lots of similarities but coaching is generally carried out by a professional executive coach with often many years of specialist training, while mentoring is generally used to apply to a situation where a mentor has more specific experience about a particular topic and has some training to support someone with less expertise on that topic.

GBA: What are the key design elements in this Program that you think will enable it to be particularly effective?

Glynis Rankin: Based on our experience of setting up prior mentoring programs we’ve been able to identify a number of factors that ensure program success. The program is clearly structured; mentors and mentees have been interviewed to understand their specialist area of expertise, their mentoring experience, their training needs (if any) and their objectives. Pairs have been matched to maximize impact. There is a program induction process and clear work processes have been laid out. Pairs will be also supported by ‘mentor facilitators’ if they feel they need that input. Additionally, pairs will be able to use the GBA ‘How to Guide: Winning The Women’s Market‘ as the framework to work through their Programs, no matter what stage they are at. Finally, we could not have a better cohort of participants. There really is no substitute for the quality of advice that will be provided by those professionals working in banks with already proven results. Altogether we think this is a great formula.

GBA: As a knowledge network, the GBA seeks to capture some of the know-how created through this Program, tell us how the GBA Mentoring Program has been designed to capture knowledge?

Glynis Rankin: While the conversations between pairs are entirely confidential, we’ve built in a couple of modalities including telephone conferences and the GBA Mentoring LinkedIn discussion group to facilitate and capture group dialog.

GBA: You’ve spoken to most of the participants already, what is your sense of the level of buy-in to the Program?

Glynis Rankin: The level of engagement is really high; everyone is highly committed and clearly understands the opportunity that this represents. There is a level of excitement about it. Members have also commented on how useful they are finding the “How To” Guide, so there is good synergy there.

GBA: What are your hopes for this program?

Glynis Rankin: By the end of the pilot, we hope that people will have achieved the objectives they have set at the beginning and that they have done so in a way that they acknowledge that the mentoring has made the difference in their ability to do so. At another level, we hope that the experience will prove so useful that mentees this year will be mentors next year, so that as the GBA grows, there will be even greater support for new members. Many participants interviewed see the value of working across cultures as a way of stimulating their own program development, and we hope through this Program we deepen their engagement with the great services and resources that the GBA is offering over all.

As told to the Global Banking Alliance For Women