Mentoring… A process that helps us to develop, maintain a teachable attitude and take a “new” look at what you are doing on a daily basis.
When I think of mentoring, my mind immediately thinks of two words – why and how.
I connect mentoring with these two little words because of many teachable moments. My 3 year old granddaughter is in the “why” stage. She will ask a question, I give an answer…and then the “why’s” begin. I can choose to answer each “why” with a logical answer or stop the conversation with the word….”because.”
There is something about that “because” word that ends the conversation.
Just like my experience with a 3 year old, a Mentor we can lose effectiveness and end conversations when we give a “because” response. The more they ask (and get a response), the more they learn, the quicker our mentee’s will grasp the knowledge that we are trying to help them reach.
So, as long as our mentee’s are asking questions…bring them on.
The “how” is also very important to explain. Sometimes the “how” is answered in step-by-step directions, and at other times it can be a one word answer. The significance is that it deserves a response. If a mentee has the nerve to ask their mentor “how” to perform a certain task, then, as a mentor, you need to have the tools to lead them in the right direction.
I firmly believe that the mentoring process – sometimes as a mentor and sometimes as a mentee – can have a profound impact on a person’s personal and professional life. We just have to take the time to answer the “why’s” and the “how’s” …and enjoy those teachable moments!!
No matter what the profession – you need to embrace the mentor inside you.
Author: Christine Dill, Firm Administrator