A mentorship programme to support new supervisors was recently approved by the regional management committee. The launch of this initiative took place on 27 April at the Arvida Golf Club, with managers, mentors and supervisors present for the occasion.
The event was full of lively conversation, as the directors of the region’s various facilities introduced the mentors and spoke about their qualities.
In total, about forty experienced supervisors from different sites will be available to support the new supervisors. Over the years, we have seen how valuable mentoring is. Although many people were already acting as mentors, this practice had never before been formalised and recognised.
“Setting up an official mentoring programme is a way of recognising the importance of the role and honouring the commitment it represents,” said Marie-Pierre Gaudreault, Learning and Technical Development Team Leader, Quebec Operations. “We wanted to identify supervisors who would act as mentors in each of our plants.”
New supervisors, upon starting their new role, will be paired with experienced supervisors who can answer all their questions on practical matters such as leadership and safety and on interpersonal issues such as the handling of delicate situations and active listening.
“There is a lot of things that you can’t learn at school, and sharing experiences helps new supervisors integrate their role more smoothly,” said Christina Gaudreault, HR Advisor, Vaudreuil-IPSF Strategic Projects. “The mentors become, in a way, pillars, and the new supervisors can consult them and even vent to them when needed.”
Often practised informally, mentorship has proved its worth and has been a source of bonding between peers.
“It isn’t a commitment with a definite timeline,” she added. “It’s a relationship that develops over the long term. There are several phases in a supervisor’s career, which does not follow a linear path. We want supervisors to benefit from quality support.”
The mentors were involved in defining the roles and responsibilities connected to their mandate. They all indicated their openness and readiness to bring in the supervisors as key elements of the process. The participation rate of the mentors is remarkable. They have the opportunity to develop and exchange ideas with each other through ongoing training.
The network of mentors will wear the official logo of the mentorship program. “By making them visible, we hope that supervisors who have only been in their roles for a few years will feel comfortable approaching them,” said Gaudreault.