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Program pairs supervisors, mentees

Haverhill, MA, Postmaster Lisa Halcarz credits the Supervisor Mentorship Toolkit with helping her to become a more effective mentor.

The Postal Service has introduced an online resource to bolster the professional development of supervisors and the employees they mentor.

Throughout the organization, many supervisors serve as mentors to other employees, including those who don’t report to them.

The Supervisor Mentorship Toolkit, available in HERO, is designed to help these supervisors and mentees build effective working relationships. The resources address topics like working with peers, time management, managing others and understanding customer experience surveys.

“The mentorship toolkit offers topics to help jump-start conversations with mentors for a particular meeting,” said Thomas Diefenbach, customer experience design and strategy manager, who helped develop the new resource.

The Postal Service is offering the toolkit in conjunction with the USPS Supervisors course, a program available through HERO that is open to all Executive and Administrative Schedule supervisors.

Haverhill, MA, Postmaster Lisa Halcarz began participating in a mentorship toolkit pilot program last fall. She used the resource to help two mentees develop action plans to improve their time-management skills.

“I asked them to write down their challenges, then shared my experiences as well as knowledge on how I overcame those challenges,” said Halcarz, a 26-year USPS employee.

One of her mentees, Joseph James, a New York District labor relations specialist, said he appreciated the guidance he received from Halcarz, as well as the other resources in the toolkit, including a module on individual development plans that helped him plan short-term and long-term career goals.

“I didn’t realize that USPS had this in place. You can jot down your game plan and progress,” he said. “The module created talking points for our conversations.”

Halcarz said the toolkit helps her to be a better mentor, a role she takes seriously.

“I had wonderful mentors myself,” said Halcarz, who credits their guidance in helping her move up the ranks from retail associate to Postmaster. “It’s a wonderful feeling knowing you helped someone grow and achieve success within USPS.”

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