The Manager's Pocket Guide to Effective Mentoring

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This book is a practical reference to effective mentoring in a format that provides quick access to the important concepts and techniques of this unique, powerful, one-to-one learning model. The Manager's Pocket Guide to Mentoring is a convenient and comprehensive reference, offering valuable, pragmatic guidance that mentors can use in assisting mentees to: Participate in constructive interpersonal dialogues during the mentoring experience; Map out attainable personal and professional goals; Analyze problems, formulate realistic solutions, and make constructive decisions; Plan workable strategies for promoting career, training, and educational development; Initiate positive actions to achieve stated objectives. This guide presents an expanded view of the behavioral expertise required of today's mentors who are faced with the challenge of establishing and sustaining mentoring relationships within more complex workplace, academic, and social environments.

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The Mentor Role: An Introduction

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✵ The Manager’s Pocket Guide to Effective Mentoring

There are four important points about mentoring which should be used as basic guidelines when applying this model:

(1) Planned Sessions—Mentoring sessions must be planned to ensure that an adequate number of mentor-mentee meetings is scheduled, and that a sufficient amount of time is allocated for meaningful dialogue and activities.

(2) Holistic Experience—From the mentee’s point of view, mentoring can be properly understood as a holistic experience which results from the interaction between the mentor and mentee over an extended timeframe. The primary influence the mentor exerts on the mentee is that of advocate for constructive change and positive growth.

In this critical role, the mentor assumes responsibility that is similar to the traditional profile of the fully engaged adult educator.

Successful mentors attempt to utilize all six mentoring dimensions competently during their relationships with mentees.

(3) Active Participation—Instead of relying on the assumed power of the mentor as an elevated role model influencing unknown protégés from a distance, the mentoring model of active learning requires participation in direct dialogues and shared activities as a means of promoting the mentee’s personal and professional development.

 

The Complete Mentor Role: Actions and Purpose

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Phases of the Mentoring Relationship

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Phases of the Mentoring

Relationship

Introduction

Mentees should experience the personality of a mentor partner as dynamic rather than static.

An experienced and proficient mentor would ideally be capable of functioning with reasonable competence in the complete mentor role at the first session. Of course, not all mentors will be seasoned practitioners, and as continuing learners themselves, they will benefit from three directly related and enriching events:

(1) ongoing one-on-one interaction with mentees

(2) self-reflection and assessment regarding their own mentoring practice

(3) the opportunity provided by training programs to engage in critiques and receive feedback from their more knowledgeable mentor peers

However, it is important to recognize that in applying the term phases to mentoring, the focus must remain on the mentee as the primary adult learner and beneficiary of the mentor’s experience.

Certainly, a simultaneous training program provided by the sponsoring organization to enhance mentoring skills will make a meaningful

 

Applying the Six Mentor Dimensions

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Applying the Relationship Dimension

Moreover, the participants could range from the open-minded and receptive to those who appear resistant to the announced program objectives and still invested in substituting their own erroneous expectations.

Familiarity—Pluses and Minuses

With respect to the specific issue of familiarity, the extent of background commonality may have a significant positive or negative influence on the direction of the evolving relationship. For example, if the participants know each other reasonably well, this reference point could enable both mentor and mentee to move reasonably quickly into direct issues such as specific goal planning and identification of immediate work-related development activities.

Barriers

However, the same familiarity useful in accelerating the action planning and learning curve could also act as a subtle barrier between the pair, who may repeat some aspects of their prior relationship which detract from the mentor-mentee experience.

For example, if the pair had been previously associated as manager and subordinate, then they might approach current issues and concerns from the perspective of the older relational situation rather than engage in the collaborative interpersonal interaction more suitable to mentoring.

 

A Concise View of the Six Mentoring Dimensions

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