How To Be a Career-Changing Mentor: 5 Tips To Make a Difference
What comes to mind when you think of professional development? Is it a big promotion, or a hard earned raise? Those things make total sense, but for some, mentoring peers is an avenue for professional fulfillment and development that rewards not only you, but your mentees as well.
Mentorship is a form of investment in the workplace by focusing your energy on the progression of your peers. It allows you to build your team of professionals into fully developed employees who are confident in their skill sets and capabilities. Getting this kind of guidance allows the mentee to feel comfortable when asking questions compared to going to senior managing members. If you’re thinking about becoming a mentor, learn how to be one that makes a significant difference by following some of the tips provided below.
Ways To Be a Good Mentor at Work
Ask about career goals
The true purpose of mentoring is for seasoned professionals to guide mentees towards their personal and professional goals, prioritizing the needs of the mentee. Simply ask them why they sought out a mentor and the goals they want to accomplish your help.
Get to know them! Ask about the things they want to improve on professionally, and their preferred way of getting feedback. The answers you take note of will guide the way you structure your meeting and communication style.
Adapt your mentoring style
After you’ve gotten an understanding of their preferred communication style and goals, think of a mentoring style that works best for who they are as individuals. If your mentee is more concerned with accelerating their career? Expose them to a wide variety of tasks to get them out of their comfort zone. If they’re more experienced, try to have a more distanced approach to show you trust their work and experience.
Be Available for Your Mentee
Investing your time in your mentees is essential to having a productive and beneficial relationship. Make sure you’re utilizing every meeting or call to impose some of your knowledge and experience.
Set Clear Expectations
Clear expectations are necessary for mentorship to be successful. Outline your professional boundaries early on to set a consistent tone. Also, allow the mentee to express their expectations for your relationship and the boundaries that make them feel comfortable.
As a mentor, your mentee should feel comfortable with going to you with any idea they think of for advice. Be a positive and engaging sound board for them to turn to. Use your experience to give them direction as to what they want to accomplish or suggest pivots to make it more attainable.