Your mentor has made a commitment to your future, offering up their time and energy. So at Mentorloop we encourage all mentees to make it as easy as possible for their mentors. That can be as grand as drafting some actionable goals or as simple as picking up the coffee tab.
In a great mentorship, you get the benefits of learning from someone who’s been there before and your mentor gets the reward of paying it forward.
Ready to build a great mentorship? Let’s go.
If you haven’t already:
- Check out your mentor’s digital footprint.
Are they on Twitter or LinkedIn? Do they have a blog?
- Send through a quick bio or intro via Mentorloop chat.
No need to overcook it. Just a few paragraphs on how you got where you are, where you want to go, and how they can help you get there.
- Consider your goals for this mentorship.
When they ask you “what do you want to achieve through this relationship?” it’s good to have an answer, even if it’s a brief one.
- Help them help you.
If you had all the answers you wouldn’t need a mentor. But it can’t hurt to brainstorm a few ways they might help you achieve your goals.
- Who, what, when, where, how…
Think about your expectations for the relationship. How often do you want to touch base? Will it be a phone or Skype call? Or if you’re in the same locale, will you meet at the office or a cafe?
During your meetings:
- Eyes on the road, hands on the wheel – you’re responsible to drive this relationship.
At your first meeting, let your mentor know you’ll be tracking success and stay committed to it. Keep track of your journey with meeting notes and actions.
- Present your goals in a clearly articulated fashion.
Be ready to suggest some realistic timelines. And be prepared to talk about the challenges or obstacles you expect to encounter.
- Seek feedback.
A great way to make sure both parties are benefitting is by checking in with your mentor to see if anything could make the time more valuable for them.
- Pick up the tab. (Or split it!)
Find a way to show your appreciation. If you’re meeting virtually, send a quick thank-you email afterwards. If you’re meeting in person let them know the coffee is on you.
After your meetings:
- Follow up with a summary email.
Include your meeting notes and actions. And share your availability for the next meet-up.
- Get connected!
Send them an invite to connect on LinkedIn or follow their blog. What’s the point of a great relationship if you can’t stay connected?
- Wax on. Wax off.
Preparing for each upcoming meeting is similar to the first. Have a clear agenda and make sure you’ve actioned any items from the previous meeting.
- Sunrise, sunset.
At the last meeting, take the time to reflect on your accomplishments and share your next steps from here. Discuss how you’d like to maintain contact going forward. And ask them if there’s any way you could be a better mentee for your next mentor.
- Be grateful and pay it back.
Don’t take your mentor for granted – at the conclusion of each meeting thank them for their time and don’t forget to ask them if there is anything you can help them with. The best mentoring relationships are reciprocal.
Things to remember:
- A mentor is not a therapist. Try to avoid conversations that veer away from your goal or objectives.
- They’re not a recruitment agent either. Avoid the temptation to ask them for a job.
- And they’re definitely not your parent. They’re not here to solve your problems for you.
- Don’t be too clingy. Contacting your mentor every time you have an issue is a quick way to kill the vibe.
It’s as easy as that. Not rocket science, but a little preparation goes a long way. And demonstrating that you’ve given this meeting some proper thought ahead of time will put your mentor at ease.
Looking for our mentor checklist? We’ve got some quick tips for the other side of the coin.
Haven’t yet found your mentor? Speak to your workplace culture champion about the benefits of Mentorloop.
Not sure where to start with a mentoring program? Download the toolkit.
Ready to launch your program? Get in touch with our team today.