TWO KINDS OF MENTORING CONVERSATIONS
effective mentoring programs don't just assign
mentors and then hope quality relationships,
effective learning, and performance improvement will
happen. The most effective programs create
structures and strategies to ensure their desired
results will occur.
The fundamental truth is that the most effective
mentoring is a mutual learning situation. At the
foundation of all effective mentoring is the core
requirement that each individual is BEING MENTORED
and at the same time is MENTORING others.
Mentors must be positioned to give their own
experience and the wisdom that comes from such
experience. It is the access to that wisdom and
experience which accelerates protege learning and
development. You know that. What you may not have
considered is that...
Mentors need to be mentored and supported in
their own learning too. Mentors don't have all the
answers, especially not in today's fast paced,
accountability driven, ever changing, performance
and results-oriented environment!
Adjoining this text is what this concept looks
like in graphic form. In that graphic, the P
represents when I am a Protege, learning from my
mentor in areas where I want to grow. The M is when
I am a Mentor, sharing with others what I have
learned to support their growth. Of course, every
other mentoring relationship above and below the one
being discussed repeats this pattern.
So if mentors need to be continual learners too,
from whom will they learn?
Their PEERS - Other practicing and growing
EXPERT Mentors - Someone we call the Mentor of
Therefore, there are two kinds of mentoring
relationships in which we should all be involved,
expert-to-less experienced, and peer-to-peer. Here
are some examples of how this can look.