As a Mentee, what can you expect from your Mentor/Mentee experience?
A mentor has achieved one or more of the personal goals you have set for yourself in education or career. They can advise you in one or multiple aspects of this path.
You should begin the partnership by establishing your goals and expectations for the experience. Know what you want to gain from these encounters and articulate those objectives. It will not be the mentor's responsibility to define what you learn during these interactions, but instead, they present experiential guidance to help you achieve your goals.
Remember, one mentor relationship may not give you all the answers and advice you need. At times different mentors will bring different skills to the relationship, and you will develop your career based on the input of multiple mentors throughout your journey.
For your experience to be productive, impactful, and respectful, the below are advised:
Do your homework on your mentor
Look up your mentor's profile on LinkedIn. Learn as much as you can about them and the mentor's employer or educational institution. If you determine that you are not well-matched to the mentee, please work with your mentor to contact Casey Kimball to help connect you with a new mentor.
Make commitments and stick to them
Your mentor is a busy person with professional obligations of their own. Respect the time your mentor is committing to you and try to make the most of it.
- Be on time for meetings and prepare yourself for each session
- Respond to emails promptly
- Have regular effective communication, regardless of medium
- Be reliable and consistent
Use your time wisely
- Come prepared
- Take notes
- Have a schedule
Be open and honest with your mentor
To get the most out of this relationship, you need to be open about your aspirations, concerns, and doubts. The mentor should treat any information you share as confidential unless you agree otherwise.
- Push yourself outside your comfort zone
- Ask questions – even if you think you know the answer, ask anyway
- There are NO dumb questions
- Be respectful of the advice or feedback is given to you
- This is meant to help you grow, not to criticize you
Advice is just that; it's okay to seek alternative opinions or confirm information with others. Just because a mentor recommends something doesn't mean it's the only path forward. Always do your due diligence and remember to always choose what is best for you!