Mentoring Seminar in Abidjan

The Association of Women Magistrates (AWM) of Côte d’Ivoire was founded in April 2016 with the active support of ProJustice.

On December 16, 2017 ProJustice organized a seminar on institutional mentoring for the AWM prior to the Association Annual General Assembly.

The consultancy consisted in assisting the ProJustice team in preparing the seminar, providing expertise and facilitation on mentoring during the seminar:  presentation and workshops to introduce mentoring techniques, and highlight the benefits of mentoring in the magistracy.

1. Remote Preparation before the Field Mission

The first step of the consultancy consisted in analyzing the demand, and working on the best answer to achieve ProJustice team’s goals concerning this seminar.

Several meetings with the COP were scheduled to get a better understanding of the ProJustice team’s needs and expectations. Thanks to this first analysis we were able to prepare a draft agenda for institutional mentoring seminar for discussion with the AWM.

A remote meeting with the COP and members of the AWM board was then organized to adjust and fine tune the program and answer to the different questions of the board.

After the approval of the board and ProJustice team, we prepared a draft presentation to be delivered during the seminar.

To highlight the benefits of the mentoring for the mentee as well as for the mentors we suggested 2 workshops so that the participants could be involved in the subject and get a more accurate understanding of the benefits but also pitfalls to avoid before launching a mentoring program.

To be efficient, workshops should be small groups of 8-10 participants. This is why we asked for 10 facilitators (1 for each group) within the AWM members, and proposed to train them in a one-day session focused on facilitation skills, and to give them some knowledge on mentoring to help them answer questions if necessary.

2. Mission on the field

We facilitated the preparatory training session with the facilitators. Seven participants out of the 10 facilitators invited attended this workshop which took place in the ProJustice conference room.

The first part of the training session was focused on a presentation of the facilitation skills, dos and don’ts, tips to feel comfortable, how to deal with difficult characters to achieve the workshop goal.

Then we had a short session on the main characteristics of mentoring with a Q&A session to anchor the different knowledge we worked on.

We then facilitated a practice session to learn by doing. We facilitated 2 workshops mirror of the workshops the facilitators will have to lead the day after in order to practice the animation skills and at the same time, finetune the timings, answer the questions and to destress the facilitators.

After this training session we went to the Court House to discover the conference room, understand how the workshops would be organized and to adjust the logistics aspects of the Ceremony and seminar.

The consultant, the COP, the Head of Objective 2  also visited the tribunal in Abidjan Plateau where the seminar of December 16, 2017 is scheduled to take place, and had a short meeting with the First President and the General Prosecutor of the Court of Appeal  who welcomed us and assured us of their presence during the Ceremony.

After the Opening Ceremony we facilitated a 3,5 hours seminar. We also provided the participants with a booklet on presentation and other resources, named: “Mentorat Côte d’Ivoire participant”.

We started by a presentation on mentoring that included: definition, differences between mentoring and training, coaching, consulting…., origins of mentoring and modern examples of mentoring programs in different economic fields, benefits for the mentee but also the mentee point of view, the process to design and set up a mentoring programm,…

Then we launched the 2 workshops session. The first question to work on was: “if we would set up a mentoring program what could be the objectives for the mentee to attend this program?”

The second workshop objective was to work on the specific skills, qualities, behaviors required to be a good mentor. The question was “Remember mentors you had (or would have liked to have), what were their qualities, attitude?”

For the 2 workshops we used two different collaborative intelligence techniques to reinforce the participants’ engagement over time.

Then we organized a wrap up session during which a speaker of each group explained the work of their group and expressed a question to us. We spent the next 10-15 minutes to answer those questions and some more during a short Q&A session.

The last session was dedicated to a synthesis and conclusion on the main key success factors to remember before launching a mentoring program.

3. After the Mission

Remotely, after the mission on the field we prepared this mission report on the consultancy that includes the expert’s presentation from the seminar, the participant booklet with added resources and a bibliography as well as a workshop training booklet.

Achievements of the consultancy:

  • The AWM members have a clear understanding of mentoring,
  • They know the key success factors to design and set up a mentoring program
  • They have a good understanding of the mentors’ required qualities and behaviors
  • They are aware of the necessity to design a structured and managed program and the different steps to set it up.

This seminar leads the AWM President to announce that the association will set up a commission in charge of mentoring.

In order to ensure long-term sustainability of the outcomes of the seminar, the consultant suggested to the participants to develop a partnership for the development of the AWM future mentoring program.