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McGraw Hill Partners with Chronus to Help Employees “Stretch Forward” with Mentoring

“The program has been a great way to share information and strengthen relationships between McGraw-Hill divisions, functions and geographic regions. I’d especially recommend this program to international team members who may be interested to learn from their cross-regional counterparts.”– Mentor


The Business Challenge

In the textbook world, a mistake is a disaster. A single typo tarnishes the entire product and the brand’s reputation, and the only available solution—to reprint and redistribute the edition—is costly. It is no wonder that perfection evolved to become a key cultural attribute of McGraw Hill, a staple of education materials since the late 1800s. Perfection earned the company a world-renowned reputation for high-quality products for over 130 years.

As McGraw Hill transformed from traditional textbook publisher to digital learning technology enterprise, the organization needed to foster its spirit of innovation, encouraging employees to stretch outside their comfort zones and embrace potential failure as a way to learn and iterate.

In that pursuit, the team at McGraw Hill organized and implemented “Stretch Forward,” an award-winning learning initiative designed to reinforce new organizational core values in support of cultural transformation and business strategy. Stretch Forward comprises several different components, building on each other to offer all employees opportunities to challenge their thinking, increase self-awareness, reach outside their comfort zones and partner with a mentor. The program includes webcast presentations, personalized learning plans, a strengths assessment and more. All of the components come together with mentoring as the centerpiece of the Stretch Forward initiative.

“Because we are in the education business, the people we work with are passionate about learning,” said Melissa Janis, Global Head of Leadership and Organizational Development. “Our analysis showed McGraw Hill employees feel most supported and invested in when a leader (in addition to their manager) is dedicated to helping them grow.”

The challenge was how to offer high-quality mentoring at scale to McGraw Hill’s global workforce and reduce the administrative effort to orchestrate matches and monitor partnerships at the same time.


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