Tips on Virtual Mentoring Relationships
Make your relationship as productive as
- Work hard to give a sense of yourself; share
things that are important to you both at school/work and in your
- Frequency of contact is important, especially in the first
few months. It will help you move beyond small talk and show
that you want to discuss a variety of issues.
- Electronic messages can be supplemented with phone calls or video chats whenever you
feel it is important to talk. Talking will definitely will add
a new dimension to your relationship.
- Be sure to ask questions and initiative conversations as well as just responding. Start
another topic if a discussion seems to be dying out. Give feedback.
- Show enthusiasm. This means giving thoughtful
answers, thanking your mentoring partner for sharing ideas, giving feedback, and
telling him or her that you're enjoying the experience.
- If you don't hear from your mentoring partner, send
a message asking sharing what you've been doing.
- Keep copies of all conversations. This will help you
evaluate the experience and will enable you to go back and
follow up on earlier discussions.
- Be aware of mirroring! If you write short, quick answers,
you are more likely to receive responses with short answers. Be open and go into more depth.
- Don't feel you have to start a new conversation each time;
tell your mentor what has happened since your last
- If you don't have time for a thoughtful reply, send a quick
note saying when you will be able to respond.
If your mentor seems unresponsive or you are having another
problem, contact [email protected].