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|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|8377||2008||14 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||8057 کلمه|
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Journal of Vocational Behavior, Volume 72, Issue 2, April 2008, Pages 254–267
The study of mentoring has generally been conducted within disciplinary silos with a specific type of mentoring relationship as a focus. The purpose of this article is to quantitatively review the three major areas of mentoring research (youth, academic, workplace) to determine the overall effect size associated with mentoring outcomes for protégés. We also explored whether the relationship between mentoring and protégé outcomes varied by the type of mentoring relationship (youth, academic, workplace). Results demonstrate that mentoring is associated with a wide range of favorable behavioral, attitudinal, health-related, relational, motivational, and career outcomes, although the effect size is generally small. Some differences were also found across type of mentoring. Generally, larger effect sizes were detected for academic and workplace mentoring compared to youth mentoring. Implications for future research, theory, and applied practice are provided.
Across areas of research, scholars agree that mentoring can be associated with a wide range of positive outcomes for protégés. Mentoring has been discussed as a strategy for positive youth development and as a deterrent of risky youth behavior (DuBois & Karcher, 2005), as a way to improve the academic adjustment, retention, and success of college students (Johnson, 2007), and as a means to facilitate career development among employees (Kram, 1985). Despite the widespread study of mentoring and its prevalence in community, academic and organizational contexts, research has progressed within its own disciplinary silos. As a consequence, there is little cross-disciplinary communication among mentoring scholars. There are also no quantitative reviews of the mentoring literature as a whole, even though the same basic assumption applies to all types of mentoring. That is, when a more experienced or senior individual (the mentor) takes an interest in and encourages a less experienced or disadvantaged individual (the protégé), the protégé will benefit (Jacobi, 1991, Kram, 1985 and Rhodes, 2005). To spark mentoring researchers to think more broadly about the potential role of mentoring in protégés’ lives and to advance mentoring theory, a comprehensive multidisciplinary meta-analysis was conducted. Our primary objective was to answer the question, “Looking across different areas of mentoring scholarship, does mentoring matter, and if so, how much?” This is an important question because the popular press makes strong claims about the importance of mentoring and both public and private funds are used to support many different types of mentoring initiatives (Rhodes, 2005). We were also interested in documenting whether or not there are differences in how much mentoring matters across protégé outcomes. For example, does mentoring have a stronger relationship with protégé attitudes (e.g., attitudes toward school, satisfaction with college, job satisfaction), protégé behaviors (e.g., grades in school, deviant behavior, job performance), or protégé motivational variables (e.g., aspiration level, time spent on educational pursuits, career commitment)? This information has implications for theory development and refinement. It may also alert practitioners as to the protégé outcomes that may be most likely affected by mentoring when designing formal programs. Finally, we were interested in examining whether mentoring outcomes vary by the type of relationship (youth mentoring, workplace mentoring, academic mentoring). This will provide a more fine-grained assessment of the conditions under which mentoring matters the most. 1.1. Overview of the mentoring literature Because individuals may experience mentoring at various life stages, it is not surprising that there are three distinct streams of mentoring scholarship: youth mentoring, academic mentoring, and workplace mentoring. Youth mentoring involves a relationship between a caring, supportive adult and a child or adolescent (Rhodes, 2002). Youth mentoring assumes that supportive relationships with adults are important for personal, emotional, cognitive, and psychological growth (Ainsworth, 1989 and Rhodes, 2002). Academic mentoring typifies the apprentice model of education where a faculty member imparts knowledge, provides support, and offers guidance to a student protégé on academic (e.g., classroom performance) as well as non-academic (e.g., personal problems, identity issues) issues (Jacobi, 1991). This type of mentoring may facilitate psychological adjustment and foster a sense of professional identity (Austin, 2002). Finally, workplace mentoring occurs in an organizational setting and the purpose is the personal and professional growth of the protégé (Kram, 1985). The mentor may be a supervisor, someone else within the organization but outside the protégé’s chain of command, or an individual in another organization (Eby, 1997). Several narrative reviews of the youth, academic, and workplace mentoring literature exist. Some narrative reviews summarize research findings associated with youth, academic or workplace mentoring in a particular area, such as diversity (e.g., Ragins, 2002), formal mentoring relationships (e.g., Miller, 2007), or naturally occurring mentoring relationships (e.g., Mullen, 2007 and Zimmerman et al., 2005). Other reviews focus on a specific type of mentoring (e.g., academic, workplace) more broadly (e.g., Jacobi, 1991 and Wanberg et al., 2003). Several quantitative reviews also exist. This includes quantitative reviews of formal youth mentoring (DuBois, Holloway, Valentine, & Cooper, 2002), academic mentoring (Dorsey and Baker, 2004 and Sambunjak et al., 2006), and workplace mentoring (Allen et al., 2004 and Underhill, 2006). Collectively these represent important efforts to synthesize the literature. However, there are no reviews that incorporate diverse areas of mentoring scholarship or compare mentoring outcomes across youth, academic and workplace mentoring. The present study addresses this issue. 1.2. Hypothesized effects of mentoring on outcomes We expect a wide range of outcomes to be related to mentoring. This includes behavioral, attitudinal, health-related, relational, motivational, and career outcomes. Behavioral outcomes. Mentoring is often discussed as a means to increase desirable behavior (e.g., academic performance, job performance) and decrease undesirable behavior (e.g., school drop-out, substance use). In fact, formal mentoring programs for youth and college students often target “at risk” individuals (cf. Campbell, 2007 and Rhodes, 1994). The hope is that mentoring will deter negative outcomes such as drug use, teen pregnancy, college drop-out, and academic failure while simultaneously encouraging alternative positive behaviors. Another way that protégé behavior may be affected is through instrumental assistance provided by mentors (e.g., helping to publish articles, complete homework, successfully finish work tasks) (Cohen & Willis, 1985). This leads us to propose: Hypothesis 1. Mentoring is associated with positive behavioral outcomes. Attitudinal outcomes. Mentoring may also have a positive effect on protégé attitudes. For instance, it is presumed that protégés will develop positive attitudes toward the activity that they engage in with their mentors. This might include activities associated with school ( Blinn-Pike, 2007 and Tennenbaum et al., 2001), graduate training (Johnson, Koch, Fallow, & Huwe, 2000), or job assignments (Chao, Walz, & Gardner, 1992). Having a mentor may also foster psychological attachment to the context in which the relationship is embedded, such as one’s school, university, or organization (e.g., Payne & Huffman, 2005). Thus, we expect: Hypothesis 2. Mentoring is associated with positive attitudinal outcomes. Health-related outcomes. Another facet of the mentoring relationship involves the provision of emotional and other forms of health-related support to the protégé. A mentor may listen and offer advice during times of stress or provide counseling on personal or job-related issues (Kram, 1985). Mentors can also enhance overall well-being by challenging protégés’ negative self views ( Rhodes, 2002 and Rhodes, 2005) which in turn may enhance protégé self-confidence or self-esteem (Johnson, 2007). Furthermore, mentors may be able to promote protégé physical health by engaging in activities such as exercise with the protégé or by facilitating protégé access to health services (DuBois & Silverthorn, 2005). As such we propose: Hypothesis 3. Mentoring is associated with positive health-related outcomes. Relational outcomes. Mentoring also may enhance interpersonal relationships with parents, siblings, and peers ( Rhodes, 2002 and Rhodes, 2005). For example, mentors may help protégés figure out appropriate strategies to deal with interpersonal problems at work, home, or school. Moreover, the experience of a trusting, close relationship with a mentor may lead the protégé to develop positive expectations about interpersonal relationships with others (Rhodes, Grossman, & Rensch, 2000) which in turn may promote positive relationships. This leads us to propose: Hypothesis 4. Mentoring is associated with positive relational outcomes. Motivational outcomes. Protégé motivation and involvement may also be influenced by mentoring. Role modeling can expose protégés to educational and social opportunities, which may open their eyes to different possibilities and motivate them to seek out new experiences (Spencer, 2007). Motivation also may be enhanced by helping protégés set achievable goals and realize personally relevant outcomes (Ramaswami & Dreher, 2007). Moreover, mentors may help protégés stay focused on tasks and steer them away from superfluous activities (Bearman, Blake-Beard, Hunt, & Crosby, 2007). Based on this, we propose: Hypothesis 5. Mentoring is associated with positive motivational outcomes. Career outcomes. Finally, mentoring relationship may promote career success. Mentors can impart specific knowledge and expertise which contributes to protégé learning and skill development ( Kram, 1985, Johnson, 2007 and Mullen, 2007). Mentors can also facilitate professional networking by introducing protégés to influential individuals within academic or organizational contexts ( Kram, 1985 and Tennenbaum et al., 2001). These important career contacts can in turn lead to career success in terms of salary, promotions, and job offers. With youth or college students, mentors also may introduce protégés to different possible careers and help them to explore those, thus enhancing their development in this area. Thus, we propose: Hypothesis 6. Mentoring is associated with positive career outcomes. 1.3. Differences in youth, academic, and workplace mentoring Although similar in some respects, youth, academic, and workplace mentoring also differ. One salient difference is the developmental stage of the protégé. Developmental theories suggest that people progress through relatively orderly periods of transition marked by unique challenges (Erikson, 1963 and Levinson et al., 1978). These developmental transitions represent critical turning points and if not navigated successfully there are psychological and social consequences (Erikson, 1963). From middle childhood to adolescence the primary developmental issues involve learning how to cultivate healthy peer relationships, master academic challenges, and develop a sense of personal responsibility (Erikson, 1963 and Spencer, 2007). In early adulthood the transitions revolve around psychological and physical separation from one’s parents, learning to develop close emotional bonds with non-family members, and identity development (Erikson, 1963 and Levinson et al., 1978). By the time one enters the workforce, the transition generally focuses on developing a stable occupational self-image and finding a niche for oneself in society (Levinson et al., 1978). Mentoring at different developmental stages also tends to serve different functions or purposes. Youth mentoring is often aimed at reducing risky behavior or improving social and academic functioning (DuBois & Karcher, 2005). Academic mentoring tends to target student retention, academic performance, and adjustment to college life (Jacobi, 1991). Finally, workplace mentoring aims to enhance employees’ personal and career development (Kram, 1985). Based on the unique developmental transitions individuals face across the lifespan and the varying purposes of different types of mentoring we propose the following research question: Are there differences in protégé outcomes when comparing youth, academic, and workplace mentoring?
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
Four conclusions can be reached from our findings. First, we found that mentoring is significantly correlated in a favorable direction with a wide range of protégé outcomes. Second, although the overall effect sizes are small, mentoring appears to be more highly related to some protégé outcomes (e.g., school attitudes) than to others (e.g., psychological stress & strain). Third, there is evidence (albeit mixed) that there may be moderators of some mentoring-outcome relationships. Finally, there is tentative evidence of differences in the extent to which mentoring is associated with some outcomes across youth, academic, and workplace relationships. 4.1. Overall findings Our findings are generally consistent with previous reviews focusing on a specific type of mentoring (youth, academic, workplace). Both Allen et al., 2004 and Underhill, 2006 found significant relationships between workplace mentoring and career attitudes, work attitudes, and some career outcomes. Reviews of youth (DuBois et al., 2002) and academic (Sambunjak et al., 2006) mentoring found an association between mentoring and both career and employment outcomes. There are also reviews linking youth (DuBois et al., 2002), academic (Dorsey and Baker, 2004 and Sambunjak et al., 2006), and workplace (Underhill, 2006) mentoring to psychological outcomes such as positive self-image, emotional adjustment, and psychological well-being, although similar to our findings, several of these reviews found small effect sizes. Finally, previous research on youth finds that being mentored is related to more positive social relationships, higher performance, and less problem behavior (DuBois & Silverthorn, 2005). Interestingly, our results suggest that mentoring is more strongly related to protégé attitudes than to behavior, health, and career outcomes. It may be that attitudes are more amenable to change than are outcomes that are more contextually dependent or more influenced by stable person variables. For instance, an individual’s decision to engage in substance use may be strongly influenced by peer pressure, access to drugs, and parental role modeling, making it difficult for a mentoring relationship to have substantial impact. Likewise, research shows that career recognition and success is influenced by factors that may be outside one’s control (e.g., gender, race) and by factors not easily malleable (e.g., cognitive ability) (Ng et al., 2005). 4.2. Differences by type of mentoring Some interesting differences in effect sizes were found across the three types of mentoring included in the present review. The absolute value of the effect sizes associated with youth mentoring ranged from .03 to .14 while those associated with academic mentoring and with workplace mentoring ranged from .11 to .36 and .03 to .19, respectively. This pattern seems to suggest that generally speaking academic mentoring has stronger associations with outcomes than does youth mentoring and that workplace mentoring is somewhere in between. One possible explanation for these differences centers on the typical context under which these different types of mentoring occur. Specifically, youth who are mentored are often “at risk” for behavioral, social, or academic problems due to a poor family and/or socioeconomic situation. Thus, youth who are mentored commonly face numerous challenges (e.g., academic problems, parental conflict, unhealthy peer relationships) that may be difficult to overcome with mentoring alone (DuBois et al., 2002). In fact, there is some evidence that youth mentoring leads to greater benefits when accompanied by other support services (Kuperminc et al., 2005). Given that youth may have many needs it may also be more difficult for mentors to offer focused and tailored guidance, especially when compared to the typical protégé within an academic or workplace setting. For example, academic mentoring relationships can generally be highly focused on a behavioral outcome such as performance because adolescents who have made it to a higher-level educational context have likely already surmounted or never faced some obstacles. Thus, they may be functioning at a higher level that does not require mentoring to be more diffuse and focused on multiple issues as may be the case in youth relationships. Another factor that could favor the effectiveness of academic mentoring is that this type of mentoring is often considered to be a core component of an institution’s mission (Sambunjak et al., 2006). Moreover, mentors within the academic context may be better equipped to provide the functions associated with mentoring as it often part of their own job training. Often individuals who mentor youth or serve as informal mentors within the workplace setting do so on a volunteer basis with little or no training. A final potential explanation for the pattern of effects centers on methodological differences in typical youth mentoring studies versus studies of other types of mentoring. Youth mentoring studies are more frequently based on a single mentoring relationship within a specific program and are often highly controlled in the form of random assignment of youth to receive or not receive a mentor. In contrast, in studies of academic or workplace mentoring the participant is often asked to simply report whether or not he or she has had a mentor. Youth mentoring studies are thus less likely to be influenced by self-selection biases (e.g., healthier individuals attract mentors) that have the potential to artificially inflate associations between mentoring and outcomes. In addition, intervention studies by their nature typically involve longitudinal associations between mentoring and outcomes at a later point in time, a factor that may further attenuate effect size estimates. 4.3. Implications for multidisciplinary research on mentoring and theory The finding that mentoring is significantly correlated with a variety of positive protégé outcomes is consistent with conventional wisdom that close relationships are important for individuals across the lifespan (Baumeister & Leary, 1995). As Allen and Eby (2007) note, individuals possess a universal and fundamental “need to belong” (p. 399). This need can be met through mentoring relationships and it may be an important driver of affective, cognitive, and behavioral outcomes for protégés. This desire for affiliation and acceptance from others can be met across the lifespan for those involved in youth, academic, and workplace mentoring relationships. This suggests that in order to acquire a broader understanding of the full range of mentoring benefits, researchers may profit from taking a more developmental lifespan approach to the study of mentoring. Such an approach will require greater cross-disciplinary dialogue. The present meta-analytic review also identifies some outcomes of mentoring that deserve greater attention both across and within specific areas of mentoring scholarship. For example, it may be useful to further explore the link between mentoring and helping others since mentoring has been discussed as a form of prosocial behavior (Allen, 2003). Examining helping behavior as a consequence of mentoring could lead to the further integration of existing research on altruism and organizational citizenship with mentoring. There also appear to be outcomes of mentoring that deserve greater attention within particular areas of mentoring scholarship. For example, career attitudes have been almost exclusively studied in workplace mentoring. However, a major goal of academic mentoring is career preparation. Therefore, it seems important to examine the relationship between mentoring received in college and subsequent career attitudes such as how satisfying one finds his or her career, expectations for career advancement, and perceived employment opportunities. 4.4. Applied implications There are several practical implications of our findings. Perhaps most importantly, we caution scholars, practitioners, and policy makers not to overestimate the potential effect of mentoring. Consistent with more focused reviews of the literature we found that the overall magnitude of association between mentoring and outcomes was small in magnitude. Moreover, due to the cross-sectional, non-experimental nature of many of the studies involved it is unknown whether significant correlations between mentoring and outcomes reflect a causal effect of mentoring. We are not suggesting that mentoring does not have value—the evidence presented here suggests that it may. However, we believe the results underscore the need to temper what are sometimes seemingly unrealistic expectations about what mentoring can offer to protégés, institutions, and society at large. We recommend that decision-makers think carefully when developing policies and programs about how to deal with pressing problems such as gang violence, teenage drug use, drop-out rates among diverse college students, and the loss of top talent in organizations. Mentoring may (or may not) be the best (or only) solution to a particular problem. Our findings also provide guidance on the types of outcomes we might reasonably expect mentoring to influence. This could inform policy makers about the types of goals that formal mentoring programs might aim for with the greatest chance of success. In general, attitudes (e.g., work satisfaction, attitudes toward school, career expectations), interpersonal relations, and motivation/involvement may be the most easily influenced by mentoring, whereas health-related (e.g., substance use, psychological stress & strain) and career outcomes (e.g., promotions, salary) may be less influenced by mentoring. Looking at our findings by type of mentoring, we see that youth mentoring may be most likely to affect school attitudes and least likely to affect the performance, psychological stress & strain, or the motivation/involvement of protégés. In the academic arena mentoring may have the most utility in terms of improving performance and attitudes toward school and decreasing withdrawal behavior. Finally, in terms of workplace mentoring we find that larger gains may be likely in terms of enhancing helping behavior, situational satisfaction & attachment, and interpersonal relationships whereas smaller gains may be likely in terms of enhancing job performance and deterring withdrawal behavior. 4.5. Study limitations The current study has several limitations that should be noted. First, and most critically given the correlational nature of many of the studies included in this review, our findings do not provide unambiguous evidence that mentoring causes protégé outcomes. Rather, our findings provide encouragement to investigate this possibility within future research using more controlled designs (e.g., experimental) and investigating outcomes over time. The existing literature on mentoring literature has not widely adopted such designs. Second, we operationalized mentoring as the presence or absence of a mentor. However, there are other ways to examine mentoring such as the amount of mentoring received, relationship length, or relationship quality. The relationship between mentoring and protégé outcomes may differ based on how mentoring is operationalized. We encourage additional cross-disciplinary research that uses different conceptualizations of mentoring. Third, there were an insufficient number of studies to conduct sub-group analyses for all protégé outcomes or to compare all three types of mentoring. This leaves unexplored questions about the relative importance of mentoring across youth, academic, and workplace mentoring. Another limitation involves the trade-offs associated with using fixed-effects versus random-effects meta-analytic methods and the inconsistent findings these two methods provided with regard to our search for sub-group differences. Until additional studies become available for analysis, our sub-group analyses should be viewed tentatively. Likewise, the Fail-Safe N analysis calls into question the stability of several mentoring-outcome relationships. As such, the results reported in Table 2 and Table 3 should be considered in light of the number of unpublished studies estimated as necessary to obtain a p = .05. In conclusion, our study represents the first attempt to quantitatively summarize the outcomes associated with mentoring across the three major areas of research: youth, academic, and workplace. The results suggest both similarities and differences in the benefits associated with different types of mentoring relationships, thus setting the stage for new areas of integration and future inquiry. The many positive benefits that our findings suggest could be associated with mentoring, albeit the small effect sizes, suggest that continued research that further helps us understand the dynamics and processes associated with mentoring across the lifespan is a worthwhile endeavor.