Mentorship Is A Two-Way Street

by May 14, 2020

Just as there are many ways to be a mentor and mentee, there are plenty of methods out there to find–and ask–the perfect person for you! Today we’re continuing to provide even more tips for seeking out the right guidance in your workplace. And then going beyond finding your best advisor to developing a meaningful, sustainable relationship with them. The methods we’ve assembled below will help you streamline your search process, developing yourself as an employee along the way, while reinforcing behaviors you can take with you beyond the mentor search to any workplace task.


Going into a conversation with a potential mentor, make sure you’ve taken this step suggested beforehand by the experts at WayUp: “Outline your professional goals. Before you can establish a relationship with a mentor, you need to know what you want to get out of it. Are you interested in developing your managerial skills or more focused on identifying a career path you can follow for the next three to five years? Your answer will determine what type of mentorship you need and help you get a sense of the kind of person who can help you achieve those goals. Pro Tip: If you’re not sure of your exact goals, make a list of the things that you’re most interested in achieving professionally. This can include projects you want to work on, positions you want to hold and the type of environment you want to work in. Once you have your list, structure your goals according to priority and create an actionable plan based on your highest priority goals.” Use these concrete actions to sort out what it is you’re looking for in a mentor before you go through the trouble of reaching out to them. Your time is valuable, as is theirs. Be prepared to make your mentorship request only after having done your homework. Be clear and direct in your ask–that way all parties involved know what to expect from the relationship. And even if your potential mentor says no, by making outlines and lists of your professional goals, you’ll have articulated for yourself the kind of growth you’re seeking in any professional environment.


We also love Matt D’Angelo at Business News Daily’s suggestions for making your mentor-mentee relationship a two-way street: “How to build a relationship with a mentor: Once you’ve met with someone and had an initial conversation, if you think they can provide valuable advice to you as your career progresses, make sure you think critically about how and when to follow up. If they’re open to continuing a dialogue, set calendar reminders on when to follow up. How often you speak with your mentor is up to you, but the goal is long-term, continued insight. That could mean hopping on the phone or meeting for coffee once a quarter, or even just twice a year.” Be proactive! Mentorship is a two-way street, but do bear in mind that your mentor is generously offering up their time and energy to share their experiences with you. Figuring out a schedule to work with your mentor shows initiative as well as organization, key qualities any mentor and any employer love to see in those they work with. Use these qualities to ensure that your mentor-mentee relationship is balanced. 

And balance is key, in the workplace and beyond. Whether it’s a relationship between you and your mentor, you and your employer, or you and your colleagues, make sure that you’re giving it your all. After all, you’ll get out of any relationship what you put into it. Join us again tomorrow as we close out the week with our Feel Good Friday: Guidance edition.


Image retrieved from Pixabay under the public domain.

This posting is brought to you by Contemporaries Inc., one of the best temp agencies in Boston MA. Also available for payrolling employees in Boston and Greater Boston

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