Mentoring is a brain to pick, an ear to listen,
and a push in the right direction.

                                           —John Crosby

Mentoring Program Goals
Mentor Requirements
Peer Requirements
Matching Mentors and Peers
FAQs
Application Forms
Contact for More Information

Think of OGR’s Mentoring Program as an extension of your staff training program—your access to free coaching for you and your staff members.

Age is not a factor for Mentors or Peers (aka Mentees). Experience is what Mentors bring to the table. Peers of all ages can increase their knowledge regarding a particular subject. Technology, for instance. A funeral service veteran might want to learn how to implement new technology in his or her funeral home. A 25-year old funeral director could be the ideal source for that expertise.

The OGR Mentoring Program is designed to provide funeral service professionals with access to ideas and expertise that improves their professional abilities and build a knowledge-based community within OGR. OGR seeks to pair experienced funeral professionals who can advise other OGR members about specific topics relating to funeral service and business practices. Mentors will be matched with Peers based on areas of expertise and interest.

All OGR members are invited to share their unique experiences and expertise for the enrichment of those in funeral service and for the good of the entire profession

Mentoring Program Goals

  • To transfer knowledge from Mentor to Peer regarding specific topics of interest to Peers
  • To foster continuous professional learning
  • To help new funeral professionals adjust to the profession
  • To communicate high standards in funeral service
  • To expose funeral professionals to a broader base of ideas, experiences and objectives
  • To encourage funeral home employees to participate in OGR
  • To groom future OGR leaders
  • To connect people within OGR and broaden networks

Mentor Requirements

  • Funeral home owners, managers and employees will be affiliated with an OGR member.
  • Mentors agree to be available for a Peer assignment for one year.
  • Mentors agree to participate in a 15-minute Mentor-orientation conference call prior to a Peer assignment.
  • Mentors agree to initiate and maintain contact with an assigned Peer according to mutually-acceptable terms.
  • Mentors must initiate contact with assigned Peer at OGR education events.

Preferred Characteristics of Mentors:

  • Experienced funeral home owners, managers and employees.
  • Funeral professionals who have experience or knowledge with a specific area, function or role relating to funeral service (i.e., budgeting, non-traditional funeral ceremonies, strategic planning, cremation services, etc.).
  • People who enjoy sharing ideas and experiences with others.
  • People who want to elevate the professionalism and effectiveness of the funeral profession.
  • People who will commit to checking in with assigned Peers on a regular basis.

Peer Requirements

  • Funeral home owners, managers and employees must be affiliated with an OGR member in good standing.
  • Peers agree to maintain contact with an assigned Mentor according to mutually-acceptable terms.
  • Peers agree to meet with assigned Mentors at OGR education events.

Matching Mentors and Peers

  • OGR Mentoring Program Mentor applicants will indicate topics on the Mentor Application Form about which they possess strong knowledge and are willing to share information and experiences another OGR member.
  • OGR Mentoring Program Peers will describe specific topics about which they seek advice.
  • OGR staff will recommend pairings; The Mentoring Program Task Force will have final approval for each match.
  • OGR staff will notify each participant to verify acceptance of the assignment and to provide each with contact information.

After Matching a Peer with a Mentor

  • Peers and Mentors participate in a conference call with an OGR staff member to introduce the Mentor and Peer, establish areas of interest, and discuss expected outcomes, learning styles and professional experiences.
  • OGR staff will contact each participant after the initial conference call to see if the pairing is acceptable.
  • Upon approval by both participants, the Mentor and Peer will determine how often they will meet and how they will communicate (via telephone, email, webcam or in person).
  • A time period of one year is advised as the formal length of assignment; matched Mentors and Peers may set a shorter or longer period of time according to the needs of the objectives they wish to achieve.
  • Peers and Mentors will maintain contact at least once per month; weekly contact is preferred.
  • Peers and Mentors will set specific goals between contacts such as: implementing a specific idea; developing a new procedure to address a situation; consulting books, articles or other learning material; or contacting other experts.
  • An OGR staff member will check in with the Mentor and Peer each quarter after the assignment is accepted (to be adjusted if the Mentor and Peer agree to a shorter or longer assignment length).
  • Questions or comments by either the Mentors or Peers will be fielded by the OGR Mentoring Program Task Force or OGR staff.

Other Notes

  • The OGR Mentoring Program is an exclusive benefit for OGR members; only owners and employees of OGR member funeral homes in good standing are eligible to participate.
  • The OGR Mentoring Program Task Force will evaluate each application and approve applicants as mentors; in the case of a rejected applicant, OGR’s Board of Directors will have final authority regarding appeals.
  • Peers and Mentors should attend OGR conferences and networking events whenever possible.
  • OGR will use success stories of Mentoring Program in publications and participants may be asked to share testimonials about their experiences.
  • Reassignment will be made for either party upon request.

FAQs

Q:     Why is OGR launching a Mentoring Program?
A:      The Mentoring Program is a way to give members access to no-cost external coaching for their staff members who want or need to develop specific skills.

Q:     What’s in it for me?
A:      Anyone who believes high performance standards are important to the future of funeral service will have an opportunity to share his or her knowledge with less experienced funeral professionals. Most participants find mentoring to be a rewarding and personally fulfilling experience that also benefits the profession.

Q:     How will the program work?
A:      Once members volunteer to be Mentors, OGR will match Peers (aka Mentees) with Mentors based on area of expertise, time availability and, when appropriate, funeral home case volume. OGR staff will facilitate the match, provide guidelines and be available to either party throughout the process.

Q:     How much time does Mentoring require?
A:      The time commitment depends on you. The Mentoring Application asks you to specify a maximum amount of time per week you are available to mentor a Peer.

Q:     Do Mentors have to have a certain amount of experience?
A:      No. A young professional may be proficient in a topic such as technology for a funeral home. The key requirement is that a Mentor has valid knowledge he or she can share with others.

Q:     Is there a fee to participate?
A:      There is no fee to Mentors or Peers; however, associated costs are non-reimbursable.

Q:     How long will I need to be a Mentor?
A:      OGR staff will help the matched Mentor and Peer establish goals and set an appropriate time frame in which to achieve them. In some cases, that may require only a few weeks. In others, it may require longer.

Q:     What if I become uncomfortable with the Mentor-Peer relationship?
A:      Either party may request to discontinue a Mentor-Peer relationship at any time if he or she believes the match is not effective or appropriate.

Q:     Are all Mentor applications accepted?
A:      Acceptance is not guaranteed. OGR’s Mentoring Program Task Force will oversee the applicants, Mentor-Peer matches and program feedback

Application Forms

Mentor

Online Mentor Application
Print Mentor Application

Peer

Print Peer Application