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How To Maximize The Benefits Of Having A Mentor

by Beverly Aarons 17. May 2012 09:13

Whether you’re already on the job, or you’re in the middle of an intense job search, mentorship can be a valuable tool. But how can you maximize the benefits of a mentor? Below are a few tips:

  1. Have a clear purpose in mind when you take on a mentor. What do you want to get out of the relationship?  Your answer should serve as a guide when choosing your mentor and when relating to him/her during the mentor relationship.
  2. Communicate your goals and expectations with the mentor.  Let the mentor know what goals you have and what you hope to gain firm the relationship. But Remember, this is a two-way street. Your mentor will also have expectations and goals.  It’s important that you find out what the mentor expects from you and work your hardest to meet those expectations.
  3. Build and maintain trust. Your relationship with your mentor won’t last if there isn’t a foundation of trust. Build this trust by following through on your promises, meeting your goals, listening to their advice and respecting their time.  Cancelling meetings and failing to do your part to fulfill your responsibilities in the relationship will destroy trust.
  4. Express your gratitude and selflessness through reciprocity. Identify skills and experience you have that your mentor lacks.  Take the initiative to offer your mentor your time and expertise.
  5. Respect your mentor’s time.  Avoid taking up too much of your mentor’s time and energy, especially in the beginning of the relationship.  Mentoring is a lot of work; don’t overwhelm anyone willing to give of their time in this way. Keep your meetings brief and on topic.

 


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