Day to day challenges of a mentor

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Since the yesteryears, a mentor has been loosely described as an individual who offers support, guidance and assistance to a mentee. In recent times, the word ‘mentoring’ has been redefined by several notches. General consensus would dictate that mentoring isn’t exactly a walk in the park. Like any other activity that requires responsibility, mentoring comes with its own share of challenges. In other words, mentoring isn’t a trivial task and requires work and effort.

No matter what your approach to mentoring is, you are certain to face any of the common challenges mentors around the world face. Understanding what these challenges are and how you can go forward will certainly help a lot.

Gauging your mentee’s nature 

As mentors, it is essential to gauge your mentees’ personality traits and remind them of what is expected from them. This can take a while and if done patiently, you can decipher their nature quite easily. The key to this is to remain patient and non-judgmental. Refrain from jumping into conclusions and don’t be hasty as you can mistake their true nature.

Setting goals for the mentoring program

Setting goals at the beginning of your mentoring program helps to stay organized and have a hands-on approach to your mentoring program.  It will lend clarity to your mentee and he/she will work towards the goals instead of being confused. The main purpose of setting goals ensures that both the mentor and mentee have something concrete to work on. Goals certainly define the purpose and meaning to the mentoring program.

Building trust in the mentee

Your mentee should be able to get to the point where he/she is able to confide in you without any second thoughts or inhibitions. Building trust is an integral part of mentoring. Once trust is built, the relationship has a firm foundation with which it can propel forward.

Identifying the mentee’s talents

Often, just being a source of support isn’t enough. A mentor’s role extends to identifying hidden talents of a mentee. You need to analyze your mentees completely in order to determine their areas of excellence and areas needing improvisation. When mentors are able to comprehend a mentee’s knowledge level or expertise in necessary skill sets, it gives rise to better correlation.  

Allocation of time for completing specific tasks

Time is an invaluable resource, which once lost, cannot be gained back. Stay abreast of time by 

preparing schedules or time slots for meetings, discussions and reviews, and completing tasks within the specified time. Refrain from delaying so that both the parties benefit.

Giving feedback to your mentees

Feedback is important during the course of your mentoring program. It can help your mentees improve in numerous ways. Once feedback is given, it has to be worked upon for more fruitful results. Documenting these results is sure to lend some leverage in your program and mentees will feel appreciated once you highlight their improvements.

The magnitude of challenges can range from simple to severe and may differ from one mentor to the other. 

Do you know any other challenge faced by mentors often?  Do you have any suggestions or solutions for the same? Share with MentorCloud