Responsibility for Mentoring

November 1994
November 1999 (revised)
November 2004 (revised)
November 2009 (revised)

Statement of the Issue

The future of healthcare management rests in large measure with those entering the field as well as with mid-careerists who aspire to new and greater management opportunities. While on-the-job experience and continuing education are critical elements for preparing tomorrow’s leaders, the value of mentoring these individuals cannot be overstated. Growing through mentoring relationships is an important factor in a protégé’s lifelong learning process. In turn, by sharing their wisdom, insights and experiences, mentors can give back to the profession while deriving the personal satisfaction that comes from helping others realize their potential. For the organization, mentorships can lead to more satisfied employees and the generation of new ideas and programs.

Policy Position

The American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE) believes that healthcare executives have a professional obligation to mentor both those entering the field and mid-careerists preparing to lead the healthcare systems of tomorrow.

Experienced healthcare executives can provide guidance to others in many ways, including:

Assisting Students and Those Entering the Field

  • Offer assistance by recruiting, interviewing and working with qualified students interested in pursuing healthcare management careers, including addressing their questions relative to pursuing appropriate ongoing education or a graduate degree.
  • Volunteer to serve as a guest lecturer, and use this opportunity to provide students with career planning guidance and insights gleaned from past experience.
  • Offer externships, internships, residencies and postgraduate fellowships.
  • Provide meaningful first-job opportunities to promising graduates and counsel them along the way.

Engaging in and Supporting Mentoring Relationships

  • Promote mentoring opportunities and an organizational culture that promotes mentoring.
  • Help protégés develop clear expectations about their role so they will actively contribute to the mentoring relationship.
  • Encourage development of mentoring opportunities in culturally diverse, cross-generational and group settings as well as among individuals of different genders, races and ethnicities.
  • Encourage other experienced executives from across the spectrum of healthcare organizations to engage in mentoring relationships.
  • Keep abreast of changes in mentoring philosophy and techniques so as to ensure continued effectiveness as a mentor in an environment characterized by profound and rapid change.
  • Seek out opportunities to contribute to local independent chapters of ACHE.

By providing guidance and engaging in mentoring relationships, healthcare leaders can benefit their organizations, contribute to the future of the profession and gain the personal gratification of helping less experienced individuals grow professionally.

Approved by the Board of Governors of the American College of Healthcare Executives on November 16, 2009.