Throughout your life, you will receive requests to be a mentor. This is your opportunity to give back by sharing your knowledge and expertise with others. As you jump into the mentor role, ask yourself: What is the most important piece of advice that you gained from a mentor? At some point in your life, there was someone who said something that helped open your eyes to other possibilities. Think about what your mentor said to you and how they said it. What did you respect about them? What characteristics and traits did they have? Were they a good sounding board? Did they provide you with encouragement? Did they provide you with honest feedback? How did they inspire you to achieve more? Now think about yourself and the type of mentor that you would like to be. What value can you add to a Mentees life?
The Mentee should have questions prepared and be ready for the conversation. So, this makes your job a little easier, as you will need to:
- Listen intently and answer the Mentees questions to the best of your abilities
- Be open to questions. Every question is a good question
- Stay focused on the Mentee
- Be honest. It is okay not to know everything, but the things that you do know will add great value to the Mentee
- Provide honest feedback to the Mentee. If the Mentee says something during the conversation that may be holding them back from success, let them know. Receiving these types of suggestions may change their life and the way that they are being perceived
The most important tip is to have fun and be you. Mentoring is just about having conversations with people, sharing your knowledge, experiences and stories. These powerful conversations will help you to reflect on your own skills, your career and help you to further develop your mentoring, leadership and communication skills.