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Why Become a Mentor: The Benefits for Mentors

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Why become a mentor? Many people assume mentoring only benefits the mentee. In fact, mentoring can be mutually beneficial, with the mentor gaining as much as their mentee. 

Here are some reasons why you should become a mentor -

  1. Personal Reflection: Mentoring gives you the rare chance to reflect on your own career, values and purpose, and sometimes to course correct. 
  1. Learn New Things: Mentoring forces you out of your comfort zone. Your mentee can share insights on new technology and trends, and you can learn new things and stay fresh. Make sure your mentee knows you are learning from them too. 
  1. Improve Your Interpersonal Skills: Mentoring requires developing your social skills, such as listening, feedback and questioning. Through mentoring, you will have a lot of opportunities to practice with them. 
  1. Give Back: Experience the satisfaction of making a difference in another person’s life and seeing them grow and learn. It’s the right thing to do and will make you feel good. 
  1. Strengthen  Your Leadership Bona Fides: Mentor experience is required for many executive positions and will boost your career development. 

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What to Do in a Mentoring Meeting as a Mentor

Having a structure can help you and your mentee make your time more productive.
2 mins

Having a structure can help you and your mentee make your time more productive. The format can be adapted to suit your requirements so there’s a natural flow. 

1. Feedback And Update 

Remind your mentee about confidentiality as well as any ground rules. 

Talk to your mentee about:

  • Feedback on their progress on the action plan. 
  • An update on what has happened in their work or personal life since you last met. 
  • Progress on what you committed to do since the last meeting.

2. Discussion

This is where you will spend the bulk of your time. Ask your mentee to go through the discussion points on their agenda, and identify the issues they want to discuss.

Example of prompting questions:

“What would be most useful for you to discuss today?”

“What would you like this session to focus on?” 

Ask questions to clarify the issues your mentee has presented; be sure you fully understand before moving on.

Guide your mentee to think about their issue more thoroughly. Ask open-ended questions to encourage them to think more deeply.

Example of prompting questions:

“What options have you considered?”

“What do you see as the pros and cons of each?”

You can then share some of your experiences and advice, if it's requested.

3. Close

Action Plan - Ask your mentee to put together an action plan of what they would like to work on before the next meeting. If needed, help them to think through options. Make a note of anything you could provide, such as an article or video, to help them.  Make sure you send them to your mentee.

Discuss and schedule your next meeting. Set up a recurring meeting if you mutually agree on a time that works for both of you. Finally, sincerely thank your mentee for their hard work.