This study examines how protégés in a formal mentoring program can influence mentoring functions received from mentors. Drawing from the proactivity dynamics framework and mentoring and proactivity research, we investigate the relationship between protégés' previous mentoring experience, their information seeking behavior, and the mentoring functions received. We also examine the moderating effect of mentors' mentoring self-efficacy on the relationship between information seeking and mentoring functions received. Data were collected at two points in time from 137 mentoring dyads participating in a formal mentoring program for new hires in China. We found that although protégés were more likely to seek job-related than career-related information from their mentors, career-related information seeking resulted in protégés receiving more mentoring functions. Also, we found support for a moderated mediation model. Specifically, protégés with fewer previous mentoring relationships were more likely to seek career-related information from their current mentors, which in turn, resulted in more mentoring functions received. Mentors' mentoring self-efficacy moderated the relationship between career-related information seeking and two types of mentoring functions (career-related support and role modeling). The implications of these results for research and practice are discussed.
Academy of Management Proceedings, 2016 (Meeting Abstract Supplement) 14476