Having a protégé seems challenging, but being a mentor is an important part of your success. This video provides examples, from Usher to Zuckerberg, on how to be a great mentor.
- What is a mentor? A mentor is one of a network of helping relationships that provides task and emotional support and also serves as a role model. I think the key to this definition is that mentoring does not have to be a monogamous relationship. This should take some pressure off of you. It is not your responsibility to fulfill all of your protege's needs all the time. Teach your protege what you're best at doing and help them connect for other support they need.
Encourage your protege to think about you as part of a network of mentors and not the only one. For example, when Mark Zuckerberg was starting Facebook, he was smart enough to know what he didn't know, which was being a CEO, so Zuckerberg wisely developed a mentoring relationship with Donald Graham, the CEO of the Washington Post. Zuckerberg needed coaching on leading an organization and in return, Zuckerberg reverse mentored Graham about social media.
So what do great mentors actually do? First, they give task support. They provide task support through sponsorship, introductions and critical feedback. For example, it's really interesting to know that Google co-founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page had the late, great Steve Jobs as their mentor. Jobs gave them critical advice and provided key introductions as their company was growing. Second, great mentors provide emotional support such as counseling, affirmation and encouragement.
For example, when singer Justin Bieber was starting out, the famous musician Usher took him under his wing and told him he believed in him. Speaking words of possibility and hope to your protege can be so powerful. Third, great mentors serve as positive role models. Remember, proteges are watching and learning from you all the time. Consider what is it that you most want your proteges to learn from you? And finally, great mentors know that the best mentoring relationships are a two-way street.
This means you can expect not only to give something in your mentoring relationship, but to get something back as well. For most of us, we spend more time working and being with co-workers than any other activity in our whole life. After 20 years of research into mentoring, I'm more convinced than ever that being a great mentor can make you feel more engaged at work and happier in general.
She also offers guidance on building trust and chemistry, providing feedback, and helping your protégé make critical career and work decisions and become resilient in the face of challenges. She also helps you address common obstacles, including a protégé that fails to meet expectations or violates trust, and explains how to gracefully exit the relationship.
- Building a relationship with your protégé
- Talking and listening with impact
- Giving feedback
- Developing trust
- Setting goals
- Developing your protégé's skills
- Managing mentoring relationships
- Overcoming common obstacles
- How to make time for mentoring