Seven Mentoring Elements for an Effective Manager

December 9, 2014 by  

Effective managers require  good mentoring abilities if they expect to help guide their team members to reach their potential.  By following these 7 elements, managers can more successfully support and encourage their people toward higher performance…an advantage for everyone.

1. Develop and define the relationship
This involves assessing your own readiness, and selecting someone to mentor and get to know over time. The two of you will build trust, set goals, and develop a strong bond.  The results will be of benefit to the entire team.
2. Sponsor
Creating new opportunities for your mentee will allow them to develop new skills that will improve their performance and increase their visibility in the organization.  Again providing benefits to everyone.
3. Survey
Mentors always keep their eye out for new opportunities as well as harmful situations. It is important to watch out for rumors, people taking an adversarial position relative to the mentee, shortcuts through the system, low-visibility or no-win assignments, and high-visibility or win-win assignments.  Making sure that relationships are based on trust, respect and rapport is a key role for the mentor.
4. Guide and counsel
In time, you will become one of your mentee’s most trusted confidants. You should help them understand conflict, and tell them when their actions are a poor fit for the organization in a constructive manner.  Humans do make mistakes, these are opportunities to learn.
5. Teach
This may be one of the more fun aspects of mentorship. You’ll impart your knowledge as well as assign tasks that will further your mentee’s education and increase their skill set.  This can ultimately provide them with other opportunities.
6. Model
You have to be aware of your own behavior, because mentees will pick up cues from you, adopting your sense of ethics, values, beliefs, etc.  You set the example, so need to commit to a respectful, encouraging, supportive and acknowledging culture.
7. Motivate
Inspiring, encouraging, and validating your mentee is all part of a mentorship program. When you are able to link their personal goals to the values of the organization, their engagement and productivity will improve.  This will again benefit everyone.

Every mentorship is different, and these tips will need to be adapted based on every unique situation. Remember, too, that mentorship isn’t a one-way street; the mentee will need to be flexible, honest, and engaged. You will learn as you mentor, just as much as the person with whom you are working.
People will seek a mentor. Make yourself available, and be the best mentor your employees could have…..this will be a win/win for all involved!

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