Informal and formal mentoring are different in their approaches and outcomes.

In informal mentoring:

  • The goals of the relationship are not specified
  • The outcomes are not measured
  • Access is limited and may be exclusive
  • Mentors and mentees self-select on the basis of personal chemistry
  • The relationship is open-ended and can continue for a life-time
  • The organization benefits indirectly, as the focus is exclusively on the mentee

In formal mentoring:

  • Goals are established from the beginning by the organization and the employee mentee
  • Outcomes are measured
  • Access is open to all who meet program criteria
  • Mentors and mentees are paired based on compatibility
  • Training and support in mentoring is provided
  • Organization and employee both benefit directly