The mentor and mentee will likely learn new things about themselves But to make the relationship work, each party needs to understand the role they play. Morag Barrett is the author of the best-selling book “Cultivate. A good mentoring relationship provides mentees with valuable knowledge and expertise in the field. Good mentors can help with many. Successful mentor/mentee relationships: Both parties she would still expect you to take the lead, figure out how best to communicate, and.
In modern times, the concept of mentoring has found application in virtually every forum of learning. In academics, mentor is often used synonymously with faculty adviser. A fundamental difference between mentoring and advising is more than advising; mentoring is a personal, as well as, professional relationship.
An adviser might or might not be a mentor, depending on the quality of the relationship. A mentoring relationship develops over an extended period, during which a student's needs and the nature of the relationship tend to change.
A mentor will try to be aware of these changes and vary the degree and type of attention, help, advice, information, and encouragement that he or she provides. In the broad sense intended here, a mentor is someone who takes a special interest in helping another person de- Page 2 Share Cite Suggested Citation: Adviser, Teacher, Role Model, Friend: The National Academies Press. Some students, particularly those working in large laboratories and institutions, find it difficult to develop a close relationship with their faculty adviser or laboratory director.
They might have to find their mentor elsewhere-perhaps a fellow student, another faculty member, a wise friend, or another person with experience who offers continuing guidance and support. In the realm of science and engineering, we might say that a good mentor seeks to help a student optimize an educational experience, to assist the student's socialization into a disciplinary culture, and to help the student find suitable employment.
These obligations can extend well beyond formal schooling and continue into or through the student's career. The Council of Graduate Schools cites Morris Zelditch's useful summary of a mentor's multiple roles: Good mentors are able to share life experiences and wisdom, as well as technical expertise. They are good listeners, good observers, and good problem-solvers.
They make an effort to know, accept, and respect the goals and interests of a student. In the end, they establish an environment in which the student's accomplishment is limited only by the extent of his or her talent. Page 3 Share Cite Suggested Citation: In general, however, each relationship must be based on a common goal: You as mentor can also benefit enormously.
Different students will require different amounts and kinds of attention, advice, information, and encouragement.
Some students will feel comfortable approaching their mentors; others will be shy, intimidated, or reluctant to seek help. A good mentor is approachable and available. Often students will not know what questions to ask, what information they need, or what their options are especially when applying to graduate programs. A good mentor can lessen such confusion by getting to know students and being familiar with the kinds of suggestions and information that can be useful. In long-term relationships, friendships form naturally; students can gradually become colleagues.
At the same time, strive as a mentor to be aware of the distinction between friendship and favoritism. You might need to remind a student-and yourself-that you need a degree of objectivity in giving fair grades and evaluations. If you are unsure whether a relationship is "too personal," you are probably not alone. Consult with the department chair, your own mentor, or others you trust. You might have to increase the mentor-student distance. Students, for their part, need to understand the professional pressures and time constraints faced by their mentors and not view them as merely a means-or impediment-to their goal.
For many faculty, mentoring is not their primary responsibility; in fact, time spent with students can be time taken from their own research. Students are obliged to recognize the multiple demands on a mentor's time.
- Looking for other ways to read this?
At the same time, effective mentoring need not always require large amounts of time. An experienced, perceptive mentor can provide great help in just a few minutes by mak- Page 5 Share Cite Suggested Citation: This section seeks to describe the mentoring relationship by listing several aspects of good mentoring practice.
At the very least, spring for lunch every once in a while. Do everything you can to make sure your relationship is a two-way street, and you'll uncover a much more animated, energetic mentor. Know Your RoleUnderstanding each person's expectations is a key ingredient in relationship building, and the mentor-mentee relationship is no exception. Each party needs to understand her role in the relationship and approach the conversation with that attitude.
For example, if your mentor prefers to offer straightforward coaching, it's up to you to adjust your expectations and be flexible and responsive to her advice. This give and take allows both individuals to contribute to and benefit from the relationship.
What Exactly Is the Mentor's Role? What Is the Mentee’s?
Don't shy away from this fact in an effort to protect her feelings. Playing dumb will only make you a bad mentee. For example, if you're a Millennial mentee partnered with a baby boomer mentoryou might be able to provide insight into up-and-coming tech trends that could prove valuable to her. It's that give and take more emphasis on the give that will make the relationship between the two of you stand out. Take Advice and Offer FeedbackWhen your mentor invests time in your relationship and offers you advice, it's wise to consider taking it if it makes sense to do so.
There's nothing worse than a mentee who listens, ignores, and doesn't even follow up on practical advice that's offered to her.
What Exactly Is the Mentor's Role? What Is the Mentee’s?
If you're on the receiving end of advice, it's up to you to implement it and keep your mentor updated on how those strategies are working out. If you don't plan to take the advice, stand up for yourself and explain your thinking. This deeper discussion might help your mentor understand your position, or it might expose a misunderstanding that was preventing you from embracing the idea.