Mentors and Protégés

In the Building Supply industry are there mentorship programs? Is it a Family member? Does your lumber yard have any mentors or mentees? Below are some tips from Managers as Mentors: Building Partnerships for Learning by Chip R. Bell, Marshall Goldsmith.

Quick Tips for Mentors and ProtégésManager as Mentors

Mentoring on the run requires a few quick tips just to keep the edge honed and the skills sharp. The following quick tips are focused both on the mentor and the protégé. Remember, success comes through a partnership. Mentors need ideas for their side of the relationship just as much as protégés need ideas on the other side.

Tips for Being a Great Protégé

•             Select a mentor who can help you be the best you can be, not one you think can help you get a promotion.

•             Remember, you can sometimes learn more from people who are different than from people who are “just like you.”

•             Get crystal clear on your goals and expectations for a mentoring relationship.

•             Communicate your goals and expectations in your first meeting

•             Mentoring is about learning, not looking good in front of your mentor. Be yourself and be willing to take risks and experiment with new skills and ideas.

•             When your mentor gives you advice or feedback, work hard to hear it as a gift. Just because it may be painful does not mean it is not beneficial.

•             If your mentoring relationship is not working like you hoped it would, clearly communicate your concerns to your mentor.

•             Great mentoring relationships take two people-a partnership. Look in the mirror before you conclude a poor mentoring relationship is all about your mentor.

•             Mentoring relationships are designed to be temporary. When you have met your mentoring goals, be willing to let the relationship end.

Tips for Being a Great Mentor

•             Mentoring is about establishing a partnership that helps your protégé learn. It is not about your being an expert or the authority.

•             Great mentors foster discovery, they don’t instruct; thought-provoking questions are much more powerful than smart answers.

•             Your protégé will learn more if you create a relationship that is safe and comfortable. Be authentic, open, and sincere.

•             Your rank or position is your greatest liability-act more like a friend than a boss.

•             Great listening comes from genuine curiosity and obvious attentiveness.

•             Give feedback with a strong focus on the future, not a heavy rehash of the past.

•             Mentoring is not just about what you say in a mentoring session; it is also about how you support your protégé after the session. Focus on helping your protégé transfer learning back to the workplace.

•             If your mentoring relationship is not working like you hoped it would, clearly communicate your concerns to your protégé.

•             Mentoring relationships are designed to be temporary. When your protégé has met his or her mentoring goals, be willing to let the relationship end.

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