1.1              Background to the Study

In an era of global competition, restructuring, rapid technological changes and constrained resources, organizations are searching for ways to do more with less, especially in the area of human resources (HR) (Dominguez and Hager, 2013). In response, many organizations have started mentoring programmes to serve their business purpose as well as help to meet the developmental needs of employees. Mentoring is a valuable resource for learning and coping with major organizational changes (Kram and Hall, 1996). Mentoring is a process in which more a senior person acts as a mentor to provide a variety of functions that support, guide, protect, expose and counsel the young ones in order to efficiently carry out the task assigned to him (Akarak and Ussahawanitchakit, 2008; Pembridge and Paretti, 2011; Rhay et al., 2010). Kram (1985) gave explanations on different types of mentoring functions which are career and psychosocial functions, which have been confirmed by various researchers (Davis, 2005; Erdem and Ozen, 2008; Jacobi, 1991; Johnson and Cervero, 2004). Mentoring leverages strategic knowledge and skill throughout the organization by sharing and spreading acquired learning and know-how. It allows the learner to acquire new skills, abilities and knowledge that enhance his competences and help in professional development. Professional development creates the opportunities for career promotion, advancement and development within the organization or field of work (Conway and Briner, 2002). It is a lifelong process of managing progression in learning, work, leisure and transitions in order to move towards a determined future (Career Industry Council of Australia, 2007).

Promotions and career aspirations are related to mentoring. Learn specific career enhancing tactics for employees is important for their career goals and aspirations to materialize. This is the major reason why goal setting plays an important role in achieving career success. Mentoring is therefore helps individual develop through a goal driven process in an organization. Various theories indicate that mentees that are instructed and given continuous feedback have increased expectations for positive career outcome (Pietrzak & Fraum, 2005). It is therefore important for mentors to guide their mentees set and achieve their career goals in order to achieve career success. This motivates the mentee to achieve higher heights in the workforce (Ricketts & Ricketts, 2010). Organizations therefore use mentoring relationships as way of retaining employees to ensure higher organization commitment. This is especially when dealing with high turnover issues. When it comes to gender, career success is not easy to achieve for women. There is a lot of supporting evidence that women face various barriers that they must overcome to achieve career success. Organization should therefore look to meet their goals to reduce high rate of employee turnover (Campbell, 2009).

A number of theories have been utilized to explain the relationship between a mentor and their mentee. The social exchange theory is based on the social psychological and sociological view on human relationships (Allen & Ebby, 2007). The theory argues that social change and stability is a process where parties involved negotiate exchanges and that human relationships are formed after parties involved weigh the cost and benefits of the relationship and compare alternatives. The social cognitive theory on the other hand proposes that individuals acquire and maintain certain behaviours based on: environmental and personal factors (Bishop & Bieschke, 2008). The acquired behaviour is further reinforced by intervention strategies as it occurs in a mentoring relationship (Hackett & Byars, 2006). Leader member exchange theory argues that the mentor mentee relationship should be considered independent unlike the one between the superior and a group of subordinates (Ford, Wilkerson, Seers, & Moormann, 2014). In a leader member exchange relationship, the leader chooses an in-group and an out-group. The in-group is more in touch with the superior than the out-group which receives less autonomy, confidence and responsibility (Graen & Uhl-Bien, 1995). Thus the difference in the quality of the relationships is that an out-group is treated according to employment contracts while an in-group accesses all the benefits of a one on one relationship with their superior (Epitropaki & Martin, 2015).

Proper mentoring brings better results when together with mentoring structure and culture. Mentoring culture is a learning environment in which a person learns by watching others’ behaviours. Mentoring culture involves an environment that gives room to implementation of a sound, complete and careful mentoring (MacArthur and Pilato, 1995). It empowers mentor with communicating network, training and administrating facilities to promote mentoring relationships. Zachary (2007) listed four components of a successfully implement mentoring culture in an organization to be flexibility, ownership, clarity and feedback.

Mentoring structure is a well-planned method of designing all organizational activities from top to bottom and bottom to top in a flexible environment. It supports mentoring and provides records for evaluation and benchmarking. It also provides means for feedback and clarifies roles, goals and responsibilities, as well as expectations and accountability (Bally, 2007; Koberg et al., 1998 and Doolittle et al., 2013).  Akarak and Ussahawanitchakit (2008), Emmerik (2008), Murphy and Ensher (2001) and Young and Perrewe (2000) have explored the outcomes of mentoring, but there has been very little research regarding the variables which strengthen this relationship. Therefore, the present study focuses on evaluating variables which strengthen the relationship between the processes that help in career progression and other related outcomes. Simply put, it examines the effect of mentoring programme of workers on personal and professional development by using Innoson Motors, Nigeria as a case study.

1.2              Statement of the Problem

Over the last two decades, research on mentoring in the workplace has focused on one of the key the problem area; the value of mentors and mentoring for the career success of mentees (Dougherty & Dreher, 2007). Research has found that individuals who have mentored others experience greater annual pay, career advancement, and stronger subjective career success than those individuals without any mentoring experience. Further, successful mentors are able to mentor their mentees to career success (Allen, Lentz, & Day, 2006). Since the 1990s, researchers have published work that investigates along with other issues whether mentoring received by mentees can be related to their objective career progress. These studies measured objective career success using variables such as promotion rates and salary. However, as time went by scholars found out that the construct of career success was made up of more than objective outcomes and that is why the subjective outcome of mentoring was considered (Seibert, Kraimer and Liden, 2001). This saw the shift to the studying of the effect that mentoring had on employee’s career success. Authors have argued that mentoring cultures promote and foster developmental relationships between organizational members (Arthur & Khapova, 2005).

Mentoring programmes are critical to employees. Employees benefit from mentoring programmes which reduces the rate of employee turnover (The Hotelier, 2016). Mentoring ensures that the less experienced workers are able to adapt to the ways of an organization. Such employees are also able to deal with the stresses that come with their job. Researchers have noted that mentoring is an effective human resources strategy that helps deal with the various issues that are experienced in the hotel industry. Employees are instructed by their mentor in their department. This way the employees are able to gain skills and achieve customer confidence. The job of a mentor is to communicate to allow good flow of information (Kim, Im, & Hwang, 2015).

Seibert, Kraimer, & Liden (2001) conducted a study on A Social Capital Theory of Career Success where they sampled 448 employees from various organizations holding various positions. The researchers conceptualized social capital and defined it as the networking opportunities and the social resources available to the research subjects. Their structural equation model indicated that the network structure in an organization was related to social resources. The effects of the social resources on the employees’ personal and professional development were determined by: access to resources, access to information and career sponsorship/mentoring. Holtbrugge & Ambrosious (2015) studied Mentoring, skill development, and career success of foreign expatriates. The researchers established a positive relationship between skill development and the career success of the employees. The research also revealed that the organizational distance between a mentor and mentees influences the skills development for employees influence the skills development for mentees.

Singh, Ragins, & Theranoue (2009) in a study on What matters most? The relative role of mentoring and career capital in career success found out that mentoring of employees added value in predicting heirachical progress and career advancement. However, the researchers also found out that despite the fact that personal and professional development matters, it just portrayed a part of a whole that is career resources. These resources are engrained in individuals and the relationships they create. Mundia & Iravo (2014) in a study on Role of Mentoring Programs on the Employee Performance in Organisations: A Survey of Public Universities in Nyeri County, Kenya highlighted the importance of mentoring programmes for employee development. The researchers found out that successful organizations employed mentoring as a method of human resource development. During the research established that besides enhanced job performance, mentoring also enhanced career development as well as skills, knowledge and abilities of employees. The aim of this research is to identify how Innoson Motors, Nigeria handles mentoring and whether mentees experience personal and professional development matters.

1.3              Objectives of the Study

This study has both main objective and the specific objectives. The main objective of this study is to investigate the effect of mentoring programme of workers on personal and professional development by using Innoson Motors, Nigeria as a case study. However, the specific objectives include:

i)                    To investigate the influence of mentoring programme on personal and professional development of workers.

ii)                  To examine the impact of human resources development strategies of workers on their personal and professional development

iii)                To understand the factors that are affecting mentoring programme on personal and professional development of workers in the organization

1.4              Research Questions

The followings are the research questions that this study will be based upon:

i)                    What is the influence of mentoring programme on personal and professional development of workers?

ii)                  What is the impact of human resources development strategies of workers on their personal and professional development?

iii)                What are the factors that are affecting mentoring programme on personal and professional development of workers in the organization?

1.5              Research Hypotheses

The research hypotheses that will be tested for this study include:

i)                    There is a significant relationship between mentoring programme and personal and professional development of workers

ii)                  There is no significant correlation between human resources development strategies and personal and professional development of workers

1.6              Significance of the Study

The results of this study will contribute to the enlarging the existing literature on the topic of mentoring and personal and professional development. Further, the results will be used to further the availability of body of knowledge and theories explaining the relationship between a mentor and mentee. This research will add to the knowledge on Social exchange theory. The study will assist future scholars and guide them during their research on the topic.

Policy makers especially in the government are among the individuals that this research wishes to influence. This is because this research will influence them in the formulation and implementation of policies that mandate organization to offer mentorship programs that advance the skills and the careers of the organizations. This will influence corporations’ involvement in employee welfare instead of just focusing on the organizational profits.

            This research will also contribute to the Human Resource practice. The results of this study will help explain the benefits of mentoring for both the employees and the organization. This will influence human resources practitioners and managers in including mentoring as a method of employment development. Human resources managers will be able to use this method by assigning a group of mentees to a mentor who will impact knowledge and skills which will allow the mentees achieve success in the organization.

1.7              Scope of the Study

The study is on the effect of mentoring programme of workers on personal and professional development. The research is targeted at covering both the staff and the management of Innoson Motors, Nigeria. This is because it is the as a case study for this research work.

1.8       Limitation of the Study

The researcher effort and concern will be concentrated on arriving at a meaningful research work. However the following will put some limitation to the study

Confidentiality:  In this research work, there is the need for the collection of primary data from fast food outlets and consumer.

Time Frame: The time frame within which the study is meant to be concluded is not enough to gather the necessary datum.

Logistic: the logistic problem lies in looking at the selected firms and making generation.

However, to overcome the aforementioned constraints, the research will make the selected respondents to understand that the data will be gathered are only required for academic purpose and nothing else. Time planning and schedule will also be employed to tackle the issue of time as the available time is utilized for academic and the research work. Finally, appropriate sampling technique will be employed to get adequate and reliable sample size necessary to arrive at a meaningful conclusion and recommendation on the overall population.

In overcoming these limitations the researcher will conduct the study base on the sample to be drawn from the population for the purpose of arriving at a meaningful conclusion and sourcing soft copies of the documents required from the relevant internet domains.

1.9       Definition of Terms

            The following terms were used in the course of carrying out this study:

Mentee: someone who has identified a specific personal or professional goal and who believes that the guidance and help of a mentor – and being held accountable to the mentor – can help them achieve their goal.

Mentor: a person or friend who guides a less experienced person by building trust and modeling positive behaviors. An effective mentor understands that his or her role is to be dependable, engaged, authentic, and tuned into the needs of the mentee.

Mentoring: a reciprocal and collaborative at will relationship that most often occurs between a senior and junior employee for the purpose of the mentee’s growth, learning, and career development. Often the mentor and mentee are internal to an organization, and there is an emphasis on organizational goals, culture, and advice on professional development. Mentors often act as role models for their mentee and provide guidance to help them reach their goals.

Professional development: activities that develop an individual’s skills, knowledge, expertise and other characteristics as a worker