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Monday, February 24, 2020

Be a Great Mentee: 10 Tips

Throughout my 20+ year career, I have mentored and been mentored by many people. Each relationship has brought new ideas and experiences into my life, and taught me lessons that I’ve taken with me during my whole career.

When dealing with a mentorship, there are a few things that need to be taken into consideration. A good mentor is constantly aware of and improving their skills, so you must learn to continuously progress as a mentee. If you and your mentor fit together symbiotically, the mentorship will blossom into a valuable relationship.

Preparing yourself for you time with your mentor can help ensure that you have a happy and helpful mentorship together.

Here are the top 10 tips for being a good mentee.
1. Be an active listener with questions and body language that shows openness to what your mentor is saying.

2. Trustworthiness.

3. The ability to speak (with humility) when there are differences.

4. Respect for the time given by being prepared for your meetings.

5. Humility goes a long way - even if you already know what your mentor is saying, listen politely and follow up by asking about their personal experiences relating to that advice. You might get a perspective you hadn’t considered before.

6. Be ready to work! Be a mentee that follows through with tasks and assignments.

7. Be willing to take risks Your mentor may ask you to do something outside your comfort zone. Be open to it!

8. Be a great introduction Treat any introduction into your mentor’s network with the utmost respect - remember that you have been given access into a network you didn’t earn on your own accord.

9. Feedback loop Let your mentor know the status of the situations you’ve discussed; especially in situations they have given advice on or introduced you into.

10. Reciprocate! Giving thanks is a wonderful way to reciprocate, but also look for ways to give back in terms of a timely article, an introduction that would benefit them, or an offer to help where you can.

Mentorship is an important relationship from both sides. Yes, the mentor has to put a lot into it—but it’s also up to the mentee to be thoughtful about what they put into it and what they want to get out of it. By being a great mentee, you’ll not only advance your career, you’ll learn the lessons you need to be a great mentor in the future, too.

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