Your First Mentoring Conversation
Begin your journey with a plan and take your time – the start may just be the
most important step you take.
As the bridge that connects the organisation and its people, HR is in a unique position to embark on mentoring as a way to build better rapport and bring to reality, their people development plans.
However, in any mentoring conversation, understand that the “getting to know you” phase is the most critical stage of the relationship, so don’t rush it. Building a trusting relationship requires time, dedicated effort, patience and yes, even courage. Your primary focus is to get to know each other, sharing your experiences and goals, as the initial step to better understanding.
Be curious. Ask questions about why your mentee has chosen to work at your organisation. What kind of goals does she have for herself? What is she troubled by? What opportunities is she reaching out towards?
However, in any mentoring conversation, understand that the “getting to know you” phase is the most critical stage of the relationship, so don’t rush it.
At the same time, to make this relationship work, trust needs to be built. So, share why you have chosen to work in HR and what hopes you have for your mentee. Share your personal experiences with the organisation and why you’ve chosen to embark on mentoring as well.
By sharing your own personal experiences, you display vulnerability, courage and a sense of openness which are key to building trust. Trust can only be attained, when people feel that they know you, the person behind the façade and when they believe they can connect with and relate to your own experiences.
While you build your relationship, also begin planning your meetings. Make them more frequent at first and ensure that both of you are actively involved in the mentoring process. Be predictable and consistent, and don’t miss appointments.
Create a Road Map
Once you both have a solid understanding of the problem faced, work with your mentee to establish goals and objectives toward solving this problem—i.e. a “road map” for your mentoring relationship…[more]
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As featured in the August 2015 issue of Accelerate Magazine. This article is locked for further viewing. Please consider subscribing to Accelerate to view this and many more great articles. You can choose to purchase an annual subscription or just a single issue.