When you successfully mentor, both you and your mentee grow and develop, and you will discover rewarding experiences and new opportunities.
To help you understand the mentoring process and its potential, Dr. Lois J. Zachary, President, Leadership Development Services, LLC, offers Top Tips to Mentors. The Center for Mentoring Excellence is a division of Leadership Development Services. http://centerformentoringexcellence.com
Top Tips to Mentors
► “Listening is critical,” Lois explains. “You should not talk more than the mentee. Mentoring is about the mentee’s growth and development. Don’t make assumptions without checking them out first. You might jump to incorrect conclusions if you do. How good are you at listening, asking questions and clarifying your mentee’s perspectives?”
► “Try to walk in the mentee’s shoes. Different generations see the world differently. They have different experiences and interests. Ask questions so that you can understand your mentee’s perspective. In conversation, check things out. Say ‘I am assuming…’ Or, say ‘I’m curious about…’ Your mentee will appreciate that you’re trying to understand where they are coming from.
► “Mentoring is mentee-driven, so clarify your role and mentee expectations, and as you move along in the process, make sure you’re on the same page.”
► “Hold yourself accountable for supporting your mentees and helping them develop a vision and a goal for the future. At the end of every mentoring session, ask the mentee if the feedback you provided was relevant and useful.”
► While you are helping and supporting your mentee, “look at mentoring as an opportunity for self-development and growth,” Dr. Zachary explains. “Always consider how you can become a better mentor. It will help you become more effective with co-workers and strengthen your skills as a leader.”
► “Your mentees must leave with the capacity, competence and confidence to achieve their goals.”
The potential for your growth and development, new personal insights and lessons you will learn as a mentor are transferrable to many situations as you consider your potential – and whether you might seek a mentor for yourself.
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