Mentoring – The Mentee Perspective
Mentoring is often described as ‘giving back’, and that’s OK. Just don’t expect to make a business out of it in that case. If you want to create a mentoring business then set out to build it as you would any business idea. Set out your stall. How much do you want to work and who do you want to work with. What income do you want to generate and what will you use that income for? These simple questions to get started are relatively easy to answer.
However, the key question is how do you as a mentor present yourself. Since the essence of mentoring is passing on hard won knowledge, how you do that can have differing outcomes. How does your mentee see you? Perhaps as a superior being (well knowledgeable professional) divulging secrets of the business world. Maybe not. As a peer who happens to have experience that is valuable to share. Possibly. As a vulnerable individual happy to discuss a mentee’s view of the world and offer insight. Probably not.
The Case For The Vulnerable Mentor
If the mentee benefits from the interaction does the mentor approach matter?
It probably does.
From a learning angle we know that we learn best when we are engaged in the conversation. Therefore the more we know about the person mentoring the more likely we are to value that opinion, or not. The point is the more a mentee can relate to the mentor’s life, the more real the learning will be.
Preaching vast experience and huge success has little value. There needs to be a reference point. So, that reference point I suggest is that the mentor acknowledges their vulnerabilities, their failures.
People buy into others’ insecurities, a mentee is no different. Whether you are ‘giving back’ or building a mentoring business how you choose to approach a mentee will directly impact outcomes. At The Coaching Revolution we are knowledgeable, experienced and vulnerable. We know how to build a business, to give back and to value others.