Summary

A good mentor has been described as in these terms

"...Someone absolutely credible whose integrity transcends the message, be it positive or negative

Tells you things you may not want to hear but leaves you feeling that you have been heard

Interacts with you in a way that makes you want to become better

Makes you feel secure enough to take risks

Gives you the confidence to rise above your inner doubts and fears

Supports your attempts to set stretch goals for yourself

Presents opportunities and highlights challenges that you might not see on your own..."

Thomas DeLong et al, 2008

In other words,

"...good mentors describe their role as being the facilitation of learning and development, and describe their skills as being how they facilitate learning. They talk about leading being important and that they care about helping others to learn. They describe the learning process as involving trust; that it has to be integrated with work; and the learners need to learn for themselves. They believe that the learner wants to learn, and that it is important for them to learn.....Mentoring should consider the following principles

- mentoring is always about encouraging learning

- learning needs always to come from the employe

- learning is always best achieved through doing and reflecting on what was done

- the mentor always has to earn the trust and respect of the mentee

- actions which lead to learning always require a performance focus

- learning actions always involve specific behaviours

- learning is always invisible and the mentor can only find out whether it is happening by hearing the learner reflect on his/her experiences

- learning always happens at the edge of our comfort zones

- mentoring is never about the mentor and always about the mentee

- there are always multiple ways of doing things and there is never one best way...."

Harry Onsman, 2004d

Does mentoring work? Some research has shown

"...training program alone increased productivity 28 percent, but the addition of follow-up coaching to the training increased productivity 88 percent..."

David Rock et al, 2006

(sources: Peter Senge et al, 1999; David Clutterbuck, 2001; Steven Berglas, 2002; James Hall, 2004; Harry Onsman, 2004d; Fiona Smith, 2005a; Sue Mitchell, 2006; Joan Sheldon et al, 2006; Rachel Lebihan, 2006; Narelle Hooper, 2007; Catherine Fox, 2007e; Sally Patten, 2007; Narrelle Hooper, 2007c; Martyn Newman, 2007; Catherine Fox, 2008a; Thomas DeLong et al, 2008; David Rock et al, 2006; David Rock et al, 2006a; Rose-Anne Manns, 2008; Bob Selden, 2008; Rose-Anne Manns, 2008a; Rachel Lebihan, 2012; Ann Whyte, 2012)

 

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