The Power of Mentoring as a Career Development Tool: Part II

Continuing on from our initial post on the power of mentoring as a career tool here are a few helpful hints on some of the qualities you should look for when choosing a mentor and secondly the steps you need to take to arrange the mentor/ mentee relationship. Enjoy!


Look for the Following Qualities in a Mentor!


  • Choose someone that you admire
  • Someone who works outside your immediate work circle
  • Someone who works in another area of your organization
  • Someone who has had a career path similar to your goal
  • Consider possibly having multiple mentors
  • Knowledgeable in their field
  • Generous and honest with advice
  • A good communicator
  • Someone who will get to know their mentee
  • Someone who will make recommendations for the mentee's career development
  • A mentor that creates learning opportunities and heightens the mentee's career
  • Someone who will introduce the mentee to key people.
  • A mentor who will introduce the mentee to key professional organizations


How to Arrange a Mentor/Mentee Relationship?


1. When looking to arrange a mentor /mentee relationship you should always consider the following:

  • What do you expect from your mentor?     
  • What do you want to focus on?
  • How much time do want to commit to this relationship?
  • What do you expect from your mentor? 

2. It is  important for you to be clear about your expectations for your own benefit and in order to communicate this to your potential mentor.

3. Invite the potential mentor to lunch or coffee to discuss your intention. Mentors appreciate the recognition, and are willing to share their knowledge and wisdom.

4. At the meeting, effectively communicate your need for a mentor, your vision of the future. Define the relationship and why you would like this person to be your career mentor.

5.Find out how involved the potential mentor wants to be in this relationship.

6. Provide  them with an opportunity to think and consider your request and  tell them you will get back to them in a couple of days.

7. Set up the parameters of the relationship together, ie. How often when & where you will meet, and the length of the meeting.

8. Always be respectful of  your mentors time. which means Showing  up on time for your meetings and providing at least 24 hours’ notice if you have to cancel your meeting.

9. Set up and respect boundaries for phone calls between meetings.(call only if absolutely necessary).


Anyone interested on adding to the discussion on the power of mentor ship as a career development tool please comment on the blog or contact Brian Lambier, President of Career Vitality Services Inc.