Thursday, October 14, 2010

10 Obstacles to Mentoring

We all try to do the right thing... but sometimes when we're rushed, shortcuts and habits can get in the way. Here's my list of things to remember when mentoring:

1 - Telling: Am I simply giving the answer instead of encouraging exploration?
2 - Showing: Am I doing it for my mentoree instead of watching them try it their way first?
3 - Deciding: Am I proposing the solution instead of allowing a decision to come from debate and deliberation?
4 - Belittling Berating Mocking: Am I, in an attempt to be humourous, denigrading someone else's efforts?
5 - Me Me Me: Am I listening or pontificating?
6 - Unavailable Inaccessible: Am I too busy? pre-occupied? uninterested?
7 - One method: Do I believe there is only one answer? Do I start most sentences with "No..." or "Well, but..."?
8 - Sole source: Am I sharing my network and resources for further explorations? Am I trying to be the 'oracle'?
9 - No celebration: Do I remember to celebrate the steps & progress along the way?
10 - Fear: Am I afraid to make a mistake myself? Or admit I don't have the answer/experience to help directly?

What would you add to this list?


Suzanne Gerweck said...

I think these all add up - listening, which I am learning is the biggest task when mentoring.

Dennie Theodore said...

Listening is the biggest task in any relationship of any kind. I wish I was better at it!