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How to Build the Relationship with Your Mentee

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Time you spend building rapport and trust with your mentee will improve the success of the journey. 
Here are key components you need to build that relationship -

1. Confidentiality in both directions is key. Do not discuss anything your mentee shares with you unless you have their permission. Remind your mentee of confidentiality at the beginning and end of every session. 

2. Building rapport and trust are essential. Here are some ways you can build trust.

  • Don’t rush. Spend enough time in the beginning getting to know each other, rather than rushing into goal setting and solutions. 
  • Do your research about your mentee so you’re not starting cold. Acknowledge their strengths.
  • Believe your mentee has the best answers within themselves. Your job is to ask the right questions.
  • Follow through – do what you say you are going to do.
  • Be prepared to be vulnerable – don’t just share your hero stories. Also share the times you failed.
  • Ask for and be open to feedback from your mentee.
  • Be non-judgmental.
  • Listen a lot! Talk a little.
  • Ask open-ended questions

3. Ask open-ended questions to get to know your mentee.

  • What are your values? 
  • What do you believe are strengths? 
  • What are you passionate about? 
  • What motivates you? 
  • What are you most proud of? 
  • What successes have you had? 
  • What have you taken away  from your failures? 

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What to do in a Mentoring Meeting as a Mentee

Mentoring works best with a structure.
2 mins

Mentoring works best with a structure. After having mentored thousands of people across many countries, we’ve developed a tested structure. 

A structure will help both you and your mentor make your meetings more productive. Discuss the format with your mentor and ensure it suits them as well.

1. Feedback And Update (10 Minutes)

  • Do a time check. “We scheduled an hour for this meeting. Does that still work for you?”
  • Describe your progress-to-date.
  • Keep track of the time.

2.Discussion (30 minutes)

Spend most of your time on the Discussion. Your mentor may ask questions to help you think more deeply about your options. Don’t just ask for advice straight away; explore the possibilities. This is your time to have an in-depth discussion. After you’ve thought through the options, you can ask your mentor to share their experiences and advice. 

3. Close (20 minutes)

Review your tasks and goals with new timelines. Make edits if necessary.

  • Discuss each action. Do you understand them?
  • Do a reality check. Is your plan doable given other constraints? Update your goals to be realistic.
  • Determine when and where you will meet next. Set up a recurring meeting if you mutually agree on a time that works for both of you. Make sure this is in both of your calendars. Set an agenda, sync your Calendars, select your preferred video conferencing tool or choose a location for meetings.
  • Thank your mentor.