I recently blogged about PR Job mentoring responsibilities, but what about the responsibilities of the mentee? Last week I attended the NYC #HAPPO Hour with John Muscarello, the young professional I have been working with. As we walked around the room, I was proud to be able to introduce him to many potential employers and industry connections. John takes his responsibilities as a mentee seriously and it occurred to me that a good mentorship is a relationship… a partnership both parties must take responsibility for.
So along with those suggestions for mentors, here are some tips for young professionals to help make the most of their relationship with a mentor:
- Listen: Get to know your mentor. Follow them on Twitter, read their blog or published works and learn more about their areas of expertise. You’ll be able to ask better questions if you take some time to listen!
- Ask questions: Mentors want to help, but are often busy. Ask questions!
- Be sensitive to your mentors time and preferred method of communication: Most mentors are extremely busy. They take the time to build these mentoring relationships because they care. Help them to be a good mentor, by finding out how they prefer to communicate. A set weekly phone call or meeting? Daily emails? Twitter DM’s? Every relationship is different, but do make sure that you are on the same page.
- Take advantage of opportunities: Attending events with your mentor or offering to help out with a project they are working on is a great way to learn!
- Strive to pay it forward: Yes, you may be the “mentee” in the relationship, but you have a lot to give. Share your success’s with your mentor (they will take such pleasure in your good news!), support your mentor and help connect other young professionals and mentors. And always strive to be the professional they are proud to be associated with!
Do you have a mentor? What efforts to you take to help build the relationship?