Ten tips for being a successful mentor

Mentoring can be useful, fun and even life changing. McCarthy Mentoring research Managing Power, People and My Career reviewed mentoring best practice and identified the top 10 tips for mentors:

  1. Advisor: A valuable mentor creates a learning environment and helps build a culture of trust by encouraging, advising and guiding the mentee
  2. Commitment: Mentors should be available and committed to the success of the relationship.
  3. Attributes: A good mentor is a strategist, trusted advisor, role model, leader, nurturer, teacher, supporter and challenger.
  4. Style: The best mentor has many different working styles and will adopt a style that suits both the situation and the mentee.
  5. Listen: Being an active listener, truly hearing and understanding what the mentee is saying, is one of the most important aspects of good mentoring.
  6. Objectives: A clear purpose and understanding of the goals, expectations and obligations should be established at the start
  7. Wisdom: mentors need to have 'walked some decent miles' – although not necessarily in the same industry
  8. Guid:, don't drive. Let the mentee be the driver of the relationship. The mentee sets the pace and goals and the mentor provides the trusting learning environment.
  9. Trust: When a mentee truly believes that you can hold in confidence what they tell you, trust will grow exponentially.
  10. Equality: The partnership should be one of mutual respect and equality. In a successful partnership both the mentor and mentee is stimulated, engaged, learning and inspired.
Sophie McCarthy

Sophie McCarthy is executive director of McCarthy Mentoring.

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