Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Department of Systems Engineering and Management

First Advisor

Sharon G. Heilmann, PhD


Businesses and organizations are continuously trying to make people more productive by using mentoring. The benefits of mentoring include higher levels of career satisfaction, incomes, promotions, self-efficacy and productivity. Past research has supported two general approaches referred to as informal and formal mentoring. Informal mentoring relationships are spontaneous and occur between two people without the involvement of the organization. Formal relationships are managed and sanctioned by the organization. The United States Air Force has a formal mentoring program. The purpose of this research was to evaluate the perceptions of mentoring effectiveness by company grade officers in the United States Air Force. Specifically, this thesis sought to determine the perceived effectiveness of mentoring by participants in a formal mentoring relationships compared to participants in informal mentoring relationships using secondary data collected by the Defense Manpower Data Center. The results indicated that formal mentoring was perceived as more effective than informal mentoring in overall mentoring and career development functions. The results for psychosocial mentoring were insignificant. Results suggested that the current formal mentoring program is effective in terms of CGOs perceptions of general and career related mentoring.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number