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Action Plan for Recommendation #5 Institute Mentoring Program Hyperlink to Exhibit 28: Overview of Strategic SOM Workforce Recommendations by Career Stage 103

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RECOMMENDATION #5 Institute Mentoring Program Description: In order to quickly develop and onboard Recommendation Highlights entry-level staff or other employees new to the SOM Target Career Stage: Entry-level staff, field, mentoring programs (both formal and informal) mid-career staff, senior leaders are effective. Mentoring programs typically involve Will help with Attraction, Recruitment, pairing someone more junior with an individual in a Retention, and Development similar field of work who has more experience in the Estimated Time to Implement: 7 months organization (e.g., 5+ years) and a successful to 1 year performance record. Mentoring programs have also Provide opportunity for new employees shown success for encouraging and engaging minority to learn about their job and the agency workers by partnering the worker with someone who is from an experienced staff member more advanced in his/her career, who may share similar Can lead to workers who are more demographic characteristics and therefore may have satisfied and more likely to succeed in experienced certain challenges or perceived barriers that their jobs the junior person may encounter during early stages of his/her career. Rationale for Recommendation: As the Baby Boomers retire, the marketplace faces the most diverse workforce ever encountered. Whereas many SOM managers, professionals, and technicians are older white males, the potential applicant pool for SOM positions is much more diverse in almost every state and metro area. These changes in the demographics of the applicant pool have already impacted the demographics of the current SOM workforce. For example, the majority of participants interviewed indicated their respective agency has begun to reach out to populations often overlooked (e.g., minorities, veterans, ex-prisoners). As a result, these interviewees reported an increase of younger employees, minorities, and women employed at all levels of the SOM field. While tapping into minority populations to expand the applicant pool helps alleviate challenges associated with maintaining a sustainable workforce, it may also give rise to new challenges for management. For example, one participant indicated that communication issues may arise as a result of cultural and/or language barriers. Lastly, the impending influx of younger workers into leadership positions presents another set of challenges. For example, younger workers typically expect more support from their employers in terms of work-life balance and flexible work arrangements (Zemke, Raines, and Filipczak, 2000). Participants also commented on the younger generation's need to see how they can advance throughout their career, which is sometimes difficult to illustrate in SOM since the field currently lacks a standardized career path. These types of benefits may need to be added to recruitment packages to attract, recruit, and retain a viable workforce. Furthermore, participants indicated that motivational factors vary across generations, specifically citing the younger generation's need to be stimulated and challenged in their work, perhaps as a result of growing up with an emphasis on multi-tasking. These differences result in the need for new management approaches in order to keep younger employees engaged and sometimes to retain them in the workforce. These changes in the demographic composition of the workforce and the influx of so many new workers argue for increased focus on mentoring and other programs that support efficient development and inclusion into the workplace culture. 104

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RELEVANT POSITIONS TARGET AUDIENCES Source of Initiation Return on Investment Targeted Audience(s) Industry 0-2 years Primary: New hires within the organization and those identified Agency 3-5 years as strong performers with a 6+ years predetermined amount of Primary Human Resource Focus experience. The new hires should Estimated Time to be assigned mentoring Attraction Implement relationships within their first Recruitment 0-3 months month of hire. Retention 3-6 months Development 7 months-1 year More than 1 year Implementation Level National Action Lead(s) Regional HR Manager (Designated Mentoring Program State Coordinator) 105

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IMPLEMENTATION PLAN Steps to Implement 1. Assemble Committee. Assemble committee including HR Manager, recruitment staff, and senior leadership, which will be led by the mentoring program coordinator. 2. Design Mentoring Program. Design the mentoring program by laying out the program objectives, coordinators, size, and scope of program. 3. Determine Mentorship Match Criteria. Determine match criteria that will designate how mentees/protgs and mentors are placed into relationships. A formal mentoring program, as recommended, includes mentees being assigned a specific mentor based on predetermined criteria. Example criteria for matching include: Competency Matching--Mentees are matched based on their weak areas. Mentors are selected based on their strengths or level of proficiency on competencies such that mentors can help a mentee "fill in competency gaps." Job Type Matching--Mentees are matched with mentors who have at least 5 years of experience in the same job type and who have demonstrated excellent performance of the job tasks. Demographic Characteristics--Mentees may be matched with mentors across jobs or lines of business based on sharing common characteristics with the mentor such as age, race or gender. Combination Approach--Matches occur based on a combination of factors. Typically the factors are prioritized so that the first "cut" for matching occurs along the most important dimension and then within that dimension, and additional factors are considered prior to making a match. Allow input on specific matching by mentors. The senior-level staff often see relationships that would be most conducive to mentoring based on criteria that are very qualitative or "soft." 4. Market the Mentoring Program. Conduct briefing sessions where employees learn about the program, including its benefits and how the restructured program differs from past mentor programs. 5. Recruit Mentors through Various Media Channels. Information should include benefits for the mentor, program expectations, and time commitments. Interested employees should be asked to complete an application. Mentors should be "pre-screened" to ensure they have good working relationships with their colleagues and have no indiscretions on their performance record that might result in a mentee being put at risk should the behavior re-emerge. 6. Invite Mentees to Participate. This should occur at the same time as mentor recruitment. However, it is recommended that once a mentoring program is established, mentees are assigned a mentor within 1 month of employment to help with the onboarding process. The mentee should also be informed of the benefits and expectations. 106

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7. Administer Self-Assessments. At this point, mentor applications should be screened by the program coordinator. Mentors who display a lack of interest or time or who may have ulterior motives for applying should not be selected. Mentors as well as all mentees who apply should be asked to complete a self inventory that is based on the match criteria. For example, the inventory may include a competency self-assessment. This brief survey should ask the participants to rate themselves on how proficient they believe they are on each of the competencies. Responses will be made on a four-point scale with their perceived level of proficiency ranging from `expert' to `limited" or low proficiency in an area. 8. Match Mentor and Mentee. Based on the criteria selected in Step 3, the mentor and mentee should be matched and provided with the appropriate contact information to initiate the relationship. Two important considerations in matching include: Mentor should not be in the mentee's chain of command (e.g., the mentee's direct supervisor). For entry-level mentees, the mentor should be two levels above the mentee. This can assist the new employee in learning the technical skills that are necessary for the position. For senior-level employees who are hired mid-career, the mentor should be someone at the same level as the mentee because this new employee will already have the technical skills required for the job, but will benefit from a mentor who can help teach the role the new employee will fill in the organization. 9. Train Mentors on Their Role as a Mentor. Optimally, before meeting with their mentees, mentors should receive training. This training should be formalized, with all mentors being required to participate. Required potential topics could include what it means to be a mentor, how to be a successful mentor, personal benefits associated with being a mentor (e.g., respect, developing a new relationship), and a place where mentors can go to ask questions or seek advice about the mentoring program. 10. Conduct Orientation and Training. The orientation session provided to program participants should meet the following objectives: Outline the program's structure, roles, and responsibilities for mentees and mentors as well as program staff, and clearly delineate the expectations and limitations of the program. Identify additional resources available to the mentee/mentor pairs, including career counseling services and quarterly conferences designed to encourage and assist the mentoring pairs. Provide activities and a structured environment in which the mentees and their mentors can begin to develop their mentoring relationship. 11. Build Camaraderie among Mentee-Mentor Pairs. Plan and offer activities to build camaraderie and support among mentee-mentor pairs such as guest speakers on career development, group lunches, trainings, job-related conferences, and end-of-year mentoring celebrations. 107

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12. Monitor and Evaluate the Program at Regular Intervals . It is recommended that formal evaluation of the mentoring program take place on a quarterly basis. This includes collecting feedback from mentees and mentors on the effectiveness of the program. Structured evaluation forms should be developed and used each time data is collected in order to make comparisons across evaluations. It is also essential to get feedback from both participants before and after. COMMUNICATIONS PLAN Communication/Outreach Strategies As part of Implementation Steps 4 and 5, it is important that the incentives and expectations for participating in a mentoring relationship are clearly defined. Mentoring relationships often fail due to unmet expectations (e.g., the mentee expects the mentor to be accessible every day but the mentor is rarely available; the mentor sees little value in continuing as a mentor). With respect to Step 7 under Implementation, results of any assessments or personal information collected as part of the matching process should be treated with strict confidentiality. For the mentoring relationship to be successful, participants' supervisors should not be involved in the selection of mentors or in review of any information regarding the mentee. For success, it is important to inform participants that the assessment process is for matching and program evaluation purposes only and will not be used to influence the participants' performance appraisal process. For Steps 9, 10, and 11 under Implementation, the program coordinator should distribute inter- office mail memos and post information clearly on the agency intranet regarding upcoming trainings and activities. These postings should occur at least 2 months in advance of the sessions, require RSVPs, and be paired with reminder notices 1 week in advance to ensure all mentees and mentors are aware of events and have the opportunity to participate. The mentoring program can be used as a hook to recruit new staff at career fairs and transportation-related conferences/events. Marketing materials describing the program such as a brochure or flyer should be developed to distribute at these events. In the effort to recruit minorities, the agency should identify organizations committed to the professional advancement of different groups and try partnering with them or identifying events/conferences they could attend with recruitment purposes (e.g., Women's Transportation Seminar WTS, Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers). Process for Obtaining Buy-In As part of the first implementation step, agencies are encouraged to engage senior leaders in articulating the program objectives and scope of the mentoring program. Allowing the senior leaders a voice helps to gain top management support, which is critical to ensuring that the initiative is adopted throughout the organization. The program coordinator should be responsible for identifying the ROI of the mentoring program and should hold regular meetings with the senior leadership team and initial mentoring committee to discuss program evaluation results and ways to make continuous improvements. 108

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USEFUL INTERNAL AND EXTERNAL RESOURCES To Implement Practice It is essential that the agency has a staff member who is dedicated to implementing, sustaining, and evaluating the mentoring program. The agency needs access to individuals with expertise in training design and delivery to develop the mentee and mentor training/orientation sessions. Example topics that could be covered in a mentee training session include: Review of program expectations and activities. Identifying personal mentee goals. How diversity affects mentoring relationships. Situations where seeking assistance from a mentor would be appropriate. Situations where seeking assistance from a mentor would not be appropriate. Tools for building a relationship with mentor. How to be a productive mentee. The mentor training session could include the following topics: Review of program expectations and activities. Basic mentoring skills. How diversity affects mentoring relationships. Effective interpersonal and communication skills related to coaching and providing feedback. The mentor's role in helping the mentee set and achieve developmental goals. How to be an effective mentor. Tools for building a relationship with mentee. Suggestions and ideas for future meeting topics. To Sustain Practice The mentoring program needs to be highly integrated with other leadership, knowledge capture, and training initiatives. Mentoring should be tailored to provide mentees with specific guidance and activities that are appropriate for where the participant is in his/her career. The agency needs to designate a program coordinator who is responsible for continuous communication about the mentoring program to ensure that its value is recognized throughout the organization. Top management support is also integral to keeping mentors and mentees engaged and making sure the pairs prioritize time spent on mentoring. 109

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Record evidence of where and how the mentoring program provides a return on investment. For example, the agency may calculate: turnover data before and after implementing the mentoring program, money saved due to reduction in turnover among mentees, any increases that may be discerned in applications received, retention numbers over specific periods of time, and increases in new hire performance. EXAMPLES OF EFFECTIVE PROGRAMS Idaho EIT Mentoring Program. The Idaho Transportation Department employs a successful, formal mentoring program as part of the Engineer in Training (EIT) program. The mentoring program is required while participating in the training program. For the program, an experienced engineer mentor is paired with a new trainee protg. These matches are made purposefully by a selection committee based on the interests, goals, and areas of expertise of the mentor and the protg. In making these matches, the program stipulates that mentors cannot be in the direct supervisory line of protgs. Both the mentor and protg must sign a contract that sets out clearly defined expectations between the mentor and protg and they must work together to ensure that the mentoring relationship is successful. Participants in the program are provided with a handbook that gives advice for both mentors and protgs, which covers communication, each person's role in the mentoring relationship, how to deal with conflict, necessary worksheets, and further resources regarding how to be an effective mentor or protg. The program stipulates that each mentor-protg pair must meet for at least 1 hour each month. This program successfully exposes new employees to the organizational culture, the technical requirements of the job, and provides managerial and organizational information. It is also used as a means to help develop future leaders. While protgs benefit from the support, encouragement, and information that they receive, mentors benefit by the positive impact they are making, earning admiration and respect, and by improving and refining interpersonal skills. In order to ensure that the mentoring program is successful and all mentor-protg pairs are benefiting, semi-annual evaluations are conducted by mentors and protgs regarding each other as well as the program as a whole. Contact Information: Matt Farrar, EIT Coordinator, 208-334-8538, matt.farrar@itd.idaho.gov New Jersey DOT Succession Planning Mentoring Program. As a part of succession planning at the New Jersey DOT, experienced leaders are paired with less experienced employees in a mentoring program. The purpose of this mentoring relationship is to provide the mentee with career guidance, encouragement, knowledge, and a role model in order to assist in meeting individual goals as well as becoming future leaders. For this program, mentees are given the option to choose a mentor who can either be inside or outside of the NJDOT. Because this mentoring program is a part of NJDOT's succession planning, all participants are expected to be future leaders and are thus required to take initiative in driving the mentoring relationship. Therefore, the goal of the program is to help mentees in becoming future leaders. 110

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Mentor-mentee pairs are expected to meet for at least 2 hours each month, focusing on areas the mentee wants to improve in and on assessments of the mentee. The mentoring program is 1 year in length, and includes both formal training sessions and individual meetings with the mentor. After a year is completed in the mentoring program, mentees can choose to stay with their mentor or choose a new mentor, but they are encouraged to remain in the program. Contact Information: New Jersey Department of Transportation Succession Planning program, sp@dot.state.nj.us Charleston County Government Mentor Network Program. The government of Charleston County, South Carolina, recently implemented a pilot mentoring program called the "mentor network program" to help workers at all levels of the organization develop into leaders. It is a leadership tool. Mentees chose their mentors. Similar to a speed-dating approach, protg bios are distributed. The pilot program started with five pairs. The potential pairs were given a certain amount of time to meet each other as done in speed dating. The matched pairs then worked together for a year. The program is a structured and formal program. Once a month, the pair is required to submit information to their human resource division. The mentoring pairs are provided with mentor toolkits, articles on mentoring, and forms to help with dialogue. Self- assessments (Meyers-Briggs Personality Tests) were conducted to ensure those chosen for the pilot had the appropriate focus. People in mentoring relationships were not restricted to the same functional areas. Contact Information: Evelyn DeLaine-Hart, Director of the Office of Organizational Development, 843-202-6917, edelaine-hart@charlestoncounty.org Joint Workforce Investment (JWI) New Operator/Mentor Pilot Project. The Joint Workforce Investment (JWI), established in 2006, is a joint labor management partnership between the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority (VTA) and the Amalgamated Transit Union Local 265 (ATU). Both organizations operate together as one "JWI" team. The JWI sponsored several projects including the "new operator/mentor pilot project." This one-year pilot project, now complete, paired 26 new operators who graduated in January 2008 with 17 veteran exemplary operators who acted as mentors. Prior to working with new operators, mentors were trained via a course offered by a local university partner. The program provided best practice customer service and job stress coping skills through on-the-job mentoring and classroom training. The mentoring and classroom training followed a coordinated curriculum, the content of which was driven by the experiences of veteran operators. With the support of the JWI team, a third-party consultant was used to collect job-relevant data, collective work experiences, and lessons learned and then form that information into several training modules. New operators and veterans have indicated that the curriculum was more "real and relevant" because of this inclusive development process. Seeing their contributions reflected in the curriculum also developed a sense of professional pride among many employees. At the beginning of the mentoring relationship, the new operators would spend 8-hour days on the veteran's bus and then later the veteran would spend a similar amount of time on the new operator's bus. New operators were brought back for classroom sessions with mentors at three critical junctures in their year-long apprenticeship. The collective bargaining agreement between ATU and VTA created the apprentice designation in 2008. This early intervention prevents new operators from developing bad habits and attitudes that amplify stress. Eventually, when the new operators began to drive on their own, they were encouraged to call their mentor at any time to discuss problems. The mentoring program is supported by a Job Development Initiative 111

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Fund (JDIF) grant from the Chancellor's Office of the California Community College system. Contact Information: Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority, 408-321-2300 or 800- 894-9908 ALTERNATIVE APPROACHES Alternative Approach 1 Agencies facing constraints in their human resources function or limitations in funding may choose to implement an informal mentoring program where mentees select their own mentors. In some cases, the agency may choose to partner potential mentees-mentors upon hire of a new employee (the mentee) but the length of the relationship is not defined by the agency. These programs often have established no-cost activities that are not required but that encourage mentees and mentors to interact such as "brown bag lunches" and networking sessions. Challenges with an informal program include difficulty in assessing the quality of the mentoring relationship and unmet expectations, and lack of accountability to ensure that each person upholds his/her role. Risks include potential backfire if an employee is persuaded to leave based on his/her impression of the organization through the lens of the mentor who lacks a positive attitude. Last, but not least, there often tends to be little opportunity for evaluation with an informal program. Alternative Approach 2 An agency that is not able to dedicate one person solely to the role of program coordinator may request volunteer coordinators from different divisions to provide oversight to the program for a specified amount of time (e.g., 6 months to 1 year). Furthermore, if enough mentors are not available to match with new hires, networks of mentors can be used where a mentee has a list of individuals they can approach for different needs and the mentors are shared across mentees. Alternative Approach 3 A mentoring program could be considered by the TRB and AASHTO committees covering SOM activities. Because committee activities can differ quite significantly from typical SOM activities, it can be difficult for new committee members to adapt to their newly acquired responsibilities. As such, instituting a mentoring program for new committee members would make the transition onto the committee easier because they would be paired with a mentor who has experience on the committee. This would decrease the time that is needed to learn about one's role on the committee and would make joining a committee less intimidating for potential new members. 112

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IMPACT Positive Outcomes of the Practice Research has found that mentoring programs can lead to a number of positive outcomes for the mentee such as salary increases, promotional opportunities, job and career satisfaction, perceptions of organizational justice, organizational commitment, career mobility/opportunities, recognition, organizational socialization, and reduced turnover intentions (Viator and Scandura, 1991, Koberg et al., 1998). Mentored individuals reported having more satisfaction, career mobility/opportunity, recognition, and higher promotion rate than non-mentored individuals, regardless of gender or level (Fagenson, 1989). Protgs in informal mentorships reported more favorable outcomes (like organizational socialization, satisfaction, and salary) than non-mentored individuals, which suggests that some form of mentoring program is better than none (Chao, Walz, and Gardner, 1992). While results from the JWI program cannot be credited solely to the mentoring pilot due to four different programs serving as part of the JWI initiative, the overall results of the JWI have been positive. A Program Performance Statistics Summary used by VTA benchmarked quarterly data comparing JWI participants and non-JWI participants on four categories: absenteeism, retention, number of grievances, and complaints. According to the data collected each quarter, this initiative helped the agency alleviate several workforce issues. For example, the data collected from April 1, 2009, to June 30, 2009, show the following for bus operators: Less absenteeism in JWI vs. non-JWI (3.5% vs. 8.5%) Higher retention rate in JWI vs. non-JWI (100% vs. 84.3%) Slightly less grievances per employee in JWI vs. non-JWI (.5 vs. 1.7) Slightly less complaints per employee in JWI vs. non-JWI (.5 vs. 2) One study regarding mentoring of minority individuals found that those who had multiple mentors who served different roles in their development had the most successful mentoring experiences. The article is titled "Mentoring Across Differences: A Guide to Cross-Race and Cross-Gender Mentoring," published by the Minority Corporate Counsel Association, and written by Ida Abbott, Esq., and Rita S. Boggs, Ph.D. (Abbott and Boggs, 2007). 113

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CAUTIONARY CONSIDERATIONS To create an effective mentoring program, there must be an agency commitment to continuous evaluation and improvement. Without this commitment, the program can begin to lose momentum, leaving a divergence in the expectations for mentees and mentors about how the relationship should be maintained. In order to gain continued commitment to the mentoring program, it is important to make sure that individuals within the agency are aware of the mentoring program and the positive outcomes that it brings to the agency. Without a valid approach to assess potential mentors prior to partnership and a system of accountability that includes requirements for periodic "check ins," the mentoring relationship may backfire. An ineffective mentor can actually become the catalyst for low job satisfaction and even possible turnover intentions if the mentee perceives he/she is "stuck" with the mentor or that the mentor represents the larger agency. Agencies should institute an automatic reassignment period so mentees can have more than one mentor within their first 2 years of employment. The agency should also have a grievance reporting process for mentees that is confidential so that it is perceived as a safe avenue for expressing concerns. Mentors should be outside the chain-of-command of a mentee to avoid disruption of the trust needed for a successful relationship based on fears of the mentee that performance decisions will be made by the mentor. To ensure that this does not happen, it is necessary to have a full list of supervisors when matching mentees to their new mentors. 114