Mentorship

Mentors encourage and enable another person’s professional or personal development. A mentor can help focus their efforts by setting goals and giving feedback. As a result, companies that want to build employees’ skills often create mentoring programs. The mentors’ knowledge can help train and create a high-quality and productive workforce. Employees appreciate workplaces that encourage development, as it can demonstrate that their employer values them and wants to see them grow.

Become a Mentor

Why a mentor is important

Mentors support growth

Mentors encourage and enable another person’s professional or personal development. A mentor can help focus their efforts by setting goals and giving feedback. As a result, companies that want to build employees’ skills often create mentoring programs.

Mentors serve as a source of knowledge

Mentors can provide specific insights and information that enable the mentee’s success. For example, they offer instructions on how to perform particular tasks or develop useful skills. 

Mentors offer encouragement

When the mentee finds themselves struggling to perform their job or reach a goal, they can turn to their mentor for support. This encouragement can motivate them to keep moving forward despite challenges.

Mentors are willing to listen

When an individual has ideas, they can use a mentor as a resource to discuss or try them. The mentor can provide unbiased advice or opinions using their relevant knowledge and experience.

Mentors can offer constructive feedback

A trusting mentorship relationship enables honest feedback. By establishing trust, the mentee understands that constructive criticism aims to build their professional growth rather than make them feel bad.

Mentors have relevant experience

When possible, individuals should choose mentors who have the experience relevant to their profession or goals. When mentors convey their successes, the mentee can use them as an example to strive toward and copy the steps they took.

Mentors can help set goals

A mentor can help their mentee set personal or professional development goals. For effective goal-setting, they can create SMART goals—specific, achievable, relevant and time-based. 

Mentors maintain accountability

A mentor helps hold their mentee accountable for their goals. By tracking progress, the mentor helps the mentee stay focused and on track towards completing them. It can also ensure that the mentee does not forget about the goals they have set.

Mentors help make connections

A mentor can help build their mentee’s professional network. When the mentee identifies professional or personal goals, the mentor can connect them to potential opportunities or individuals who can help them.

Mentors serve as a trusted ally

Trust represents a core element of mentoring relationships. The mentee must trust that the mentor has their best interests in mind and will provide accurate and honest guidance.

Mentors provide guidelines

For individuals just starting their career, a mentor can help set guidelines on professional expectations. For example, they may clarify the priorities of the role and proper workplace behaviors. 

Mentors are a free resource

Mentorship typically occurs due to networking or company programs, so mentors do not seek payment. They offer to serve this role because they genuinely want to help the other individual grow and establish a more authentic and personal connection.

Importance of Mentorship

Individuals who have mentors often perform better at their jobs, earn higher salaries and achieve faster career progression than non-mentored individuals. In high school, mentorship can help students find a career path and connect with the right people and resources to support their advancement.

Why consider becoming a mentor

Being a mentor boosts interpersonal skills

Your interactions with a mentee offer numerous opportunities to practice and build interpersonal skills, such as communication, active listening, empathy and patience. Communication is especially essential to mentorship, as you may meet regularly to discuss the mentee’s goals, ideas or concerns and provide instructions or advice. 

Being a mentor expands your network

You can introduce your mentee to contacts to help build their network. In return, they may have relevant or interesting connections to share with you. Networking can aid your career, as these connections can lead to professional and advancement opportunities. 

Being a mentor establishes leadership skills

A mentor is a leadership position because you work directly with someone to guide them on professional development. Through your instruction, they hopefully gain useful skills or advance their career. 

Being a mentor serves as a learning opportunity

You teach and advise your mentee, but you can also learn something from them. If you and your mentee come from different backgrounds, they can teach you about things you have never experienced before.

Being a mentor can help you gain new perspectives

Mentorship serves as an opportunity to look outside your usual network and potentially connect with someone very different from you. For example, you and your mentee may come from different backgrounds or generations.

Being a mentor offers self-reflection opportunities

Mentorship lets you think about and share your experiences. While assessing your positive and negative experiences, you may discover lessons that benefit both the mentee and yourself. 

Being a mentor strengthens your knowledge

When working with a mentee, you share relevant knowledge gained through your career or experiences. You advise them or demonstrate how to perform specific tasks. For example, you may teach your mentee negotiation methods and then practice with them. 

Being a mentor can help you receive recognition

If your mentee finds significant success, it can demonstrate your value to others. Part of their success is due to your guidance, which can help your colleagues and peers recognize the skills and knowledge you offer. Other people may show interest in collaborating with you or asking for your mentorship.

Being a mentor adds to your qualifications

A mentor can help build their mentee’s professional network. When the mentee identifies professional or personal goals, the mentor can connect them to potential opportunities or individuals who can help them.

Being a mentor can build confidence

When you help your mentee succeed, you can gain confidence in your skills and abilities. It demonstrates that you have qualities that support others’ improvement or development. This confidence can help boost your professional and personal self-worth.

Being a mentor provides a sense of fulfillment

Beyond providing you recognition or other external benefits, mentorship can offer inner fulfillment. Knowing that you made a positive impact on someone’s life or career can make you feel good. If you received mentorship early in your career, serving as one can offer an opportunity to pay it forward.

Being a mentor can help strengthen your company

When participating in an employer’s mentoring program, you use your knowledge and experience to help strengthen their employees. When these employees understand their roles’ expectations and form positive work habits, it can make them more efficient and productive. 

Being a mentor establishes leadership skills

Through your instruction, they hopefully gain useful skills or advance their career. Leadership skills are valuable for any profession or role, so this experience proves that you can manage others effectively toward specific goals.