Characteristics of Excellent Mentors

A mentee-mentor relationship entails work, commitment, and follow-through on both sides if it's going to be successful. Consider the following traits to assess your mentoring skills and areas that you wish to develop to ensure that the mentoring you offer is effective and has lasting value.

  • Good listener/sounding board
  • Flexible
  • Value diversity of perspectives
  • Knowledgeable
  • Nonjudgmental
  • Able to give constructive feedback
  • Honest and candid
  • Able to network and find resources
  • Successful in career
  • Willing/able to devote time to developing others
  • Eager to learn

Do a self-assessment and know what you are offering to your mentee and what you expect of yourself.

  • What are my strengths as a mentor?
  • What are my challenges as a mentor?
  • In what ways can I compensate for my mentoring weaknesses (e.g., books, training, advice from good role model)?

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