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Building the Relationship

Role of the Mentor

Mentors and mentees alike look forward to a productive and rewarding mentoring experience. Building an open and enjoyable relationship of mutual respect will be your key to achieving this goal. Your ability to create and maintain a relationship will be a significant part of your success.

Please remember that the role of a mentor is not to find a job for the mentee. This expectation can put a strain on your mentoring relationship. Instead, maintain a focus on helping the mentee gain a better understanding and knowledge in the three key areas addressed by The Mentoring Partnership:
         Workplace culture in the Canadian context
         Information about the profession, industry, sector
         Networking to build professional links

Successful mentoring is all about

  • conversation
  • sharing of knowledge, information and experiences
  • learning from each other
  • opening doors
  • providing inspiration
  • validating another’s experience
  • helping an experienced professional to transfer their knowledge and experience so that they can achieve success in a new situation       

Staying focused

It is inevitable that you will get side-tracked, distracted or slowed down by various developments during your time together.

Here are a few tips for what you can do at each meeting that may help you stay focused on your goal: 
  • Follow up on earlier commitments – what has been achieved, what challenges came up, how can they be addressed?
  • Check on new developments in the mentee’s life – do they present a new opportunity or a new challenge that needs to be addressed?
  • Attend to anything that needs immediate attention, including a lack of motivation.
  • Briefly go over your goals and milestones – are you still on target?
  • Work on a topic or issue that you have selected for the day.
  • Identify next steps, with deadlines and outcomes.
Always take some time for small talk and catching up with each other.

Tips