- Work on developing a close bond with the mentee that’s rooted in trust and respect.
- Maintain a steady presence in the mentee’s life.
- Be reliable. Make every effort to show up for scheduled meetings, and give the mentee ample advance warning if you need to reschedule.
- Focus on the mentee’s needs and goals, not your own.
- Identify your mentee’s strengths and help him or her learn how to use them.
- Teach your mentee to learn from his or her setbacks.
- Solicit the opinion of your mentee when making decisions.
- Share your experiences and knowledge.
- Respect your mentee’s culture, perspective and life circumstances when guiding his or her life decisions.
- Have an agenda or activities in mind before meeting with your mentee.
- Encourage and praise, but also be honest and sincere.
- Emphasize the positive and be enthusiastic.
- Respect your mentee’s choices and privacy.
- Expect to bond immediately. It takes time.
- Adopt an authoritative tone.
- Act as a substitute for the mentee’s parents.
- Be judgmental or impose values inconsistent with the mentee’s life circumstances or beliefs.
- Make promises you may not keep.
- Be too accommodating just to be liked. It is important to teach your mentee responsibility and commitment.
- Violate confidentiality except where crisis intervention is necessary.
- Lend money.
- Be afraid to admit when you are wrong or uncertain. Learning together can strengthen a relationship.
- Be all business and no fun.
- Take it personally if a mentee does not always heed your advice.
- Forget that the MentorPrize and the mentoring program staff is there to help you.
Additional information on being a mentor
Tips to get the most out of mentoring sessions, for both you and your mentee:
Tips for building a mentoring relationship: