Mentorship is powerful—both for the mentor and the person being mentored. And professional growth is enhanced when a trusted mentor provides guidance and when we assist in the growth of others. In the early 1900s, Napolean Hill described the successful person as one with arms stretched out in two directions. Upwards, to climb further, pulled by those going before. Downwards, to assist those behind him. So don’t think of mentorship as either/or….being the mentor or being the mentee.
Ideal mentorships do not involve an administrative hierarchical relationship and are focused on the mentee’s well-articulated objectives. Mentorships may grow organically out of existing relationships or be sought out by participants who do not have a previous relationship. Mentorships can be arranged specific to an individual’s growth or a group with shared goals. Mentorships can be accomplished across geographic divides or by a mentor/mentee who are able to meet face-to-face.
Interested in engaging in a mentorship as mentor and/or mentee? Start by self-assessment. As a mentee, consider what are your goals, what actions are on your to-do list to achieve your biggest goal? Envision what could be achieved through a positive mentorship? As a mentor, consider your achievements, talents, and knowledge and how these prepare you to mentor another person with similar interests. If you are ready to pursue mentorship, there are many online resources regarding identifying mentee or mentor. Future blogs will address these.