Human Resource Development: Learning Goal Orientation


This is paper is a summary of the article “Learning goal orientation, formal mentoring and leadership competence in HRD” by Sooyoung Kim. The article speaks about and recommends a model for learning goal orientation, mentoring and leadership skills.

The summary of the article

The article speaks about the importance of mentoring in the development of leadership qualities. It focuses on the need and importance of mentoring in training and development of leaders for developing unique leadership skills and competencies. Human resource is an inevitable part of any organization. They are to be given proper training and guidance to develop their skills and qualities.

Leaders are not born. They may have some qualities which have to be developed with the help of proper mentoring. The organization has to find out their abilities and take necessary steps to develop these abilities. This way the organization will be able to make great leaders to lead the organization to growth. The organization has to develop leadership skills in all the employees. The leadership skill is a requirement of not only the top managers, but also of employees at lower levels. Most of the organizations spend a lot of money for developing leadership qualities of its employees.

Mentoring is a key element of leadership and it acts as a very good tool for the development of the human resource. It is a process of creating and maintaining a relationship between experienced and inexperienced employees. Mentoring can offer many benefits for the organization. Some of them are less employee turn over, proper understanding of the respective roles of each employee, improvement in the performance of the employees etc.

There are different methods for the development of leadership qualities. Some of these are 360 degree feed back, executive coaching, peer coaching and formal mentoring etc. Each of these methods may have some disadvantages but they are sure to produce better results. Learning goal orientation is the important par of the mentoring and leadership quality development. It refers to improving the abilities, handling new situations and achieving new skills for self development. Both mentors and the persons to be guided (protégé) must go through the learning goal orientation. The employees must maintain good relation among themselves.

Formal mentoring is a widely used mentoring technique. It is used for training the top level managers. The mentor has to continuously evaluate the protégés and give them challenging assignments so that they can confidently face difficult situations in future. The protégé must be given chance for feedback. This will help the mentor make changes in mentoring process, if required.

If the employees are guided by mentors who possess goal orientation, it can yield better results and can make significant changes in the leadership behavior of the protégés. They can be good role model for the inexperienced employees at the bottom level. The protégés can learn more leadership qualities from mentors with learning goal orientation thereby improving the leadership qualities of the protégés. From this it is clear that there is a great deal of difference between the mentors with high learning goal orientation and mentors with low or no learning goal orientation.

The social learning theory states that the more the people interact with others the more they learn. Continuous interaction with others can make changes in the behavior of the individuals. It is a commonly known fact that people learn more easily from others than learning by reading books or articles. This interaction can help in developing leadership qualities. This theory can be applied in the mentoring process.

To conclude, mentoring from mentors having higher learning goal orientation can help protégés acquire different leadership qualities and competencies. Simultaneously, the mentoring process can also improve the leadership competencies of the mentors along with developing or improving the leadership qualities of the protégés.

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