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November 1999 (revised)
November 2004 (revised)
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November 2014 (revised)

Statement of the Issue

The future of healthcare management rests in large measure with those entering the field—mid-careerists who aspire to new and greater healthcare leadership opportunities as well as senior leaders who are leading the healthcare industry. While on-the-job experience and continuing education are critical elements for preparing tomorrow's leaders, the value of mentoring cannot be overstated. Growing through mentoring relationships is an important factor in a mentee's lifelong learning process. In turn, by sharing their wisdom, insights and experiences, mentors 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 the development of management talent, more satisfied employees and a generation of new ideas and programs.

Policy Position

The American College of Healthcare Executives believes healthcare executives have a professional obligation to mentor those entering the field (students, early careerists and those newer to healthcare leadership roles), mid-careerists preparing to lead the healthcare systems of tomorrow and senior executives preparing to move into larger or more complex organizations.

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

  • Be willing to offer career development advice to those interested in pursuing or advancing healthcare management careers. Address questions relative to required competencies for success at their particular career stage.
  • Offer externships, internships, residencies and postgraduate fellowships to students and early careerists.
  • Serve as a guest lecturer at a college or university or as a presenter at an ACHE chapter program and use this opportunity to provide others with career-planning guidance and insights gleaned from past experience.
  • Participate in established mentoring programs such as ACHE's Leadership Mentoring Network to assist members at all levels.
  • View mentoring as an important leadership skill and utilize available resources to enhance this competency.
  • Promote mentoring opportunities and an organizational culture that encourages mentoring of early, mid- and senior careerists.
  • Help mentees 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 10, 2014

Related Resources

ACHE's Career Resource Center: Leadership in Mentoring Resources

ACHE Mentor & Mentee Guides