Are There Mental Health Benefits to Being a Mentor?
Could being a mentor help alleviate some of your work stress? According to a study recently reviewed in the Harvard Business Review, the answer is potentially “yes.”
Gil et al (2018) compared survey data collected from police officers paired in a mentoring relationship to that of paired officers who were not selected into the mentoring program (via random selection). A subset of the officers in the mentoring program also completed semi-structured interviews, where they were asked about their jobs and the mentoring experience.
Mentors reported less anxiety than the officers who were not mentors. They also reported deriving more meaning from their work. Mentors reported that the mentoring relationship helped with both of these outcomes.
While these results are encouraging, this study was done with a different occupation. It also had a small sample size, a number of missing data points, and baseline data was not reported, so these results should be interpreted with caution. Additionally, the results were not robust.
The work of Gill et al (2018), however, does make one wonder about the potential implications for the profession of audiology. For those who have served as a mentor in our field, what have you found to be some of the benefits?
Gill M, Roulet T. (2019) Stressed at work? Mentoring could help. Harvard Business Review. Retrieved March 10, 2019.
Gill M, Roulet T, Kerridge S. (2018) Mentoring for mental health: A mixed-method study of the benefits T of formal mentoring programmes in the English police force. Journal of Vocational Behavior. 108:201–213.