The purpose of this study is to examine mentoring as an important resource in coping with rapid organizational change during the merger of two international accounting firms. Shortly after their merger, 28 pairs of management advisory services (MAS) professionals, i.e., protégés and their mentors, within the two merged firms were interviewed concerning the role mentoring played as an adaptive mechanism in dealing with changes caused by the merger. Both firms examined in the study used a formal mentoring system. In the study, we examined three broad areas. First, whether or not there had been a shift in the type of mentoring relationships from career development to the psycho‐social function in order to deal with the emotional trauma and stress of changes created by the merger, and how extensive this shift had been across the different levels of the merged firm. Second, what the emphasis was between the informal mentoring and formal mentoring within the merged firm, and how useful the participants found the two in dealing with the higher level of uncertainty in the work environment. In addition, a third research area emerged during the interview process. Differences in the communication structure of the two former firms appeared to be related to how well the participants were able to deal with changes caused by the merger and to affect the type of mentoring relationships they preferred.
Rigsby, J., Siegel, P. and Spiceland, J. (1998), "Mentoring among management advisory services professionals: an adaptive mechanism to cope with rapid corporate change", Managerial Auditing Journal, Vol. 13 No. 2, pp. 107-116. https://doi.org/10.1108/02686909810202809Download as .RIS
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