How to Be a Mentor Article from ASAE

By Lila Elliott Test Account posted Oct 28, 2009 05:45 PM


Got this today and thought was a good article on being a mentor and how to pay it forward.

Here are some tips on how to be a good mentor with ASAE’s Mentor Connector

  1. Be fully present. Mentoring requires excellent listening and your full attention. Set aside your daily challenges and pressures during a mentor session so that you can devote your full attention to your mentee. Whether the mentoring session is in person, by telephone, or via email, this means making yourself unavailable to others during the conversation. By not allowing interruptions, the quality of your mentoring will be significantly more effective and productive for both of you.
  2. Take time to make a personal connection at the start of the session. One of the pleasures of a mentoring relationship is the sense of connection between two people. Before launching into the focus area of the day, spend a few minutes making a personal connection. Small talk often helps both people to relax and get ready for a deeper conversation. Ask about their weekend, kids, hobby, or anything to get the conversation started on a positive note.
  3. Ask open-ended questions. In order to provide relevant perspective, the mentor must understand the mentee’s situation and concerns at a deep level. Rather than asking questions that can be answered with a simple “yes” or “no,” practice asking questions that call for a reflective response. Remember to ask early on why the mentee has sought a mentor and what s/he would like to gain from the experience. It is better to know some of the right questions than to have all of the answers. High-gain, open-ended questions typically start with “Who, What, When, How, Tell me more about…Give me an example of…” You will find a list of open-ended questions for mentors in our resources section.

Want to hear more tips? Click here to read eleven more tips on how to be a good mentor.

Ready to become a mentor?  Sign up now on the ASAE Mentor Connector! This online mentoring service aspires to pair experienced mentors with mentees to help advance their careers. Demonstrate your leadership and commitment to the association community by becoming a mentor today.

To become a mentor, you must be an ASAE & The Center member and have at least three years of association experience. Mentors are allowed to take on two mentees at any given time and the system is completely self-managing and easy to use. To become a mentor you need to register and receive an approval, which occurs within seven business days.