2b. Understand Your Role as a Mentee

Spending time at the beginning of the relationship clarifying what each party can legitimately expect to give and get through mentoring is essential. It is especially beneficial for the individuals involved to discuss, negotiate, and agree upon expectations. You must be an active learner in this relationship, but also an active participant in furthering the development of your mentor. You must be open to sharing your career goals, successes, and failures, and receiving feedback and advice, as detailed below:

Core Performance Expectations

  • Be willing to discuss failures and successes
  • Demonstrate a genuine interest in being helped by mentor
  • Demonstrate application of learning obtained through the relationship
  • Exhibit a desire to improve in a certain area or learn a new skill
  • Identify professional development goals, priorities, and career interests
  • Listen actively
  • Provide honest feedback to the mentor
  • Seek ways to achieve objectives and contribute ideas for solving particular problems

Time Commitment Obligations

  • Be accountable for scheduling meetings with mentor
  • Be respectful of mentor’s time and schedule
  • Commit the requisite time and energy
  • Do the necessary pre-work for mentoring conversations
  • Follow up on action items identified during development conversations
  • Informally communicate on a regular basis with mentor

Mentoring Citizenship

  • Attend mentoring-related meetings and events
  • Maintain privacy/confidentiality of development conversations
  • Provide input to assess and improve the mentoring program
  • Take advantage of organizational resources
  • Track development and career progress
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