Five years of Mentoring at U. S. Steel Košice
This April, U. S. Steel Košice started to implement the fifth year of its Mentoring Program, which is based on coaching. This training approach aims to develop professional and leadership skills in a selected group of steelmakers. The program’s pilot was initiated in 2012 and since then newly-hired university graduates and newly-appointed managers have been engaged in the program. The current program covers twenty newly-appointed managers and nine university graduates.
The importance of the program is indicated by the fact that it is supported by Scott D. Buckiso, President of U. S. Steel Košice, Martin Pitorák, Vice President Human Resources, and Marcel Novosad, Vice President Operations. The General Manager's Unit for HR Development led by Milan Polča and the Training and Development Unit managed by Gabriel Kádár are responsible for its successful implementation.
On June 14th all the mentored staff met with their mentors for an informal meeting where they had a chance to get to know each other better and discuss their ideas on development, experience and skills in the presence of the company’s Vice Presidents Martin Pitorák and Marcel Novosad. Milan Polča, GM HR Development, stressed that mentoring is a process of personal development in which each mentor helps a person as well as the company to develop its potential. The program helps new staff to orientate themselves in their field of expertise. Newly-appointed managers thus have a chance to acquire both managerial and professional skills while using the experience of their mentors. We select experienced professionals and leaders as mentors so that they can hand over their experience and skills to those who need them.
Following the informal meeting, we prepared the mentors’ training based on the coaching method, and tasks and responsibilities of mentoring. This will be followed by regular meetings in person between the mentor and the mentored. By next February every pair should meet for an hour or hour and a half, at least eight times.
During the meetings, the mentors deliver individual coaching accompanied by so-called ”shadowing”, where an internal coach also monitors the meeting with the aim of giving feedback to the mentor on his/her mentoring.
Changes were made in the 2016 mentoring program. It was changed into an ongoing process, so that each new manager appointment or university graduate hiring is followed shortly after by the program.