When deciding to pursue mentorship, there are various aspects to consider. Whether you are currently being mentored or considering to be, understanding the critical considerations, can have a direct impact on mentorship being happy and healthy relationship.
This in mind, mentoring is a channel that helps people to develop more effectively. It is a relationship in which a more experienced person provides guidance and wisdom to a less experienced and knowledgeable person. If you have not learned this in life, soon you will understand that it is not always what we see in ourselves that keeps us going, but also what other people see in us. Therefore the aim of mentoring is to build the mentee’s confidence so that ultimately, they are able to take control of their own development.
What is a mentor and their role?
A mentor is often described as a trusted and experienced advisor. Age does not really have to be a factor as long as the mentor has expertise in the respective area. A mentor does not need to be a qualified expert, they only need to be able to listen, ask questions, challenge you and help identify actions you need to take in the journey of developing yourself. They can provide advice on career development, qualifications, offer advice on different perspectives, share networks, encourage self-reflection and help you with a general understanding of a problem or situation.
It is important to note that mentoring is not necessarily the same thing as training and coaching. However, they can take on different roles such as networking, friendship, coaching, facilitating and counseling. Preferably, a mentor should not be directly responsible for performance but should be responsible for encouraging the mentee to reach their objectives.
Benefits of having a mentor
Mentorship provides the opportunity to think about things from a different perspective and develop skills by learning from other people. It can also help build your confidence and motivation. Having a mentor is a good platform to discuss ideas and approaches before action is taken. And if you approach the mentorship with the seriousness it deserves, you can obtain tangible and measurable gains if you work through your tasks. Beyond that, it’s always good to have someone neutral in your life journey, who might be less bias in comparison to your friends and family.
Being a good mentee
If you want to continuously progress a mentee, you need to be flexible and always open to learning The key to a successful mentorship is being open to different perspectives that might help to improve yourself. And If doesn’t work, you can always go back to the drawing board and try different options. Remember that being open to learning also involves making mistakes so don’t be afraid of making mistakes and trying new things. Always take ownership and responsibility for your own learning. As much as the mentor can equip with you tools, you must have the will and drive to take charge of your learning by asking questions and actively participating in the conversations.
Developing trust from the beginning of the relationship will be at the centre of a good mentorship. Be cognisant of the fact it may take time to develop trust but this is to ensure This is to make sure that you always feel the environment is safe enough to remain open and honest. In addition, trust goes with respect so it’s always key to remain respectful to your mentor. This means respecting their time by being punctual for your sessions and if you can’t attend a meeting or would like to reschedule, letting your mentor know timeously.
If mentee and mentor bear all these considerations in mind, a very valuable relationship can be developed. Always remember that the mentorship can end once the objectives have been achieved or if both parties feel the relationship isn’t working. However, it is up to your discretion as it can also continue long-term if both parties feel the mentorship adds value to their everyday life.