Mentoringby Helen Moulsley
The ongoing mentoring relationship
The primary responsibility for progressing the mentoring relationship lies with the mentee. However, both the mentor and the mentee have a role to play throughout the relationship.
The deal for the mentor is to honour the terms of the contract:
- Achievement of agreed objectives and review of outcomes
- Attending the agreed meetings and not rescheduling
- Following through on any actions agreed
- Respecting confidentiality
- Exercising skills, such as listening, giving feedback and coaching the mentee to arrive at their own solutions
- As the mentoring relationship progresses, the mentee will increase in confidence, becoming more self assured and beginning to come up with solutions for themselves; your role as mentor is to step back and adapt your style with them as they progress.
For the mentee:
- You own the relationship and you should continue to be proactive; this is a good opportunity to practice your management skills, ensuring that the terms of the contract are adhered to and that your scheduled meetings take place
- You should undertake to ensure that the objectives you jointly agreed at the first meeting are being worked towards; it’s your responsibility to track the outcomes
- As you grow in confidence and experience, your relationship with your mentor should change, with you taking more of a lead and lessening any dependency you may have on the mentor
- Your aim should be to move towards closure on the formal mentoring relationship, thus avoiding the risk of dependency on your mentor; you may, however, agree to continue informally, albeit acting more as the equal you have become
- Finally, think about what you can do to make a contribution back to your mentor (see Benefits for the mentor).