Discuss

How do I get more value out of my mentor?


#1

Mentorship is a weird thing; you want help, but you’re not sure how to extract that value from another person. You know they have the knowledge, and they want to help, but maybe they’ve never been a mentor before!

It’s a little bit of an awkward start for all involved. But, do you want to know a tip?

Ask questions of your mentor. Ask your mentor to ask questions of you.

Questions are the BEST basis for starting a conversation with your mentor.

What are some other ways that you interact with your mentor that helps you get more value?


#2

So, yes, questions are the key here. If you find someone who claims to be a mentor, and he/she spends a lot of time telling you what to do, or telling you his/her own stories, I’d urge you to look pretty hard at the relationship and what you’re getting out of it. Because in my experience, the people who’ve consistently told me that they value my mentoring tell me it’s because I ask challenging questions, what-if questions, and “have you thought about” questions. In my mentoring, I’m always trying to open the mind of the person I’m interacting with, trying to get him/her to “think wide” and go beyond the frame or constraints in their thinking. I think that’s the real skill you want to look for when you’re evaluating someone as a mentor.

I’ll post more on this thread in a couple of days as I have more thoughts as well.

Martin