The Importance of Being a Good Mentee
By: Kia Robinson
It goes without saying that an essential part of a career journey is a mentor – someone you can turn to for career-related advice, guidance and support. There’s so much to be learned from an individual who has enough career and life experience that they’re ready to share their knowledge with others in an effort to help them achieve their goals. A mentor-mentee relationship is not one that is developed overnight. They require work, from both parties, just like any other relationship. While there’s often so much talk about the importance of a good mentor, there’s very little said about the importance of a good mentee and how you can be one. We’ve developed four simple tips you can take to help you become a better mentee in no time and help you make the most of your relationship.
1. Take Initiative and Practice Consistency
Every now and then, make sure you check in on your mentor. You don’t always have to wait for your mentor to reach out to you. They’re busy people and sometimes just need a “How’s everything going?” e-mail too. It’s important that you’re putting in just as much effort towards the success of the relationship. Additionally, consistency is key in all things. Make sure you’re reaching out and connecting with your mentor on a regular basis to ensure that the relationship is progressing.
2. Offer Help
Mentee-Mentor relationships are two way streets. In addition to your mentor pouring into you, you should be able to offer your time, support or talent to any of their projects. Ask your mentor what he/she is currently working on. If you see an area that could use your support, speak up. Ask, “How can I help you make that happen?” or “Did you need help with that? Let me know how I can help make that happen for you.” This lets them know that you’re invested in their success just as much as they are invested in yours and that’s important.
3. Ask Questions
Make sure that every time you meet with your mentor, you have some questions to ask. Questions keep conversations going and show that you’re invested in your own growth and that you trust your mentor’s wisdom. Your mentor has a lot to offer and your questions will ensure that he/she is sharing information that will be most valuable to you.
4. Share Your Growth
People like to know they’re making an impact. When you can, share your progress with your mentor. Let him or her know that their advice is being put to good use and actually contributing to your success. Subsequently, make sure you’re actually applying their advice to your life and attempting to make changes. Trust and know that your mentor wants the best for you and would love to bask in the progress of your career journey.
Do you have a mentor? Are you a good mentee? Share some tips that have helped your mentor-mentee relationship flourish in the comments below.
Kia is a recent college graduate that's simply trying to grasp the concept of "adulting". She enjoys hugs, quotes, a good book, and all things motivational. Her favorite book is The Alchemist and she can watch Girlfriends all day long.