As anyone who has been there before will tell you, mentorship is not a job to be taken lightly. Rather, it can be one of the most important roles you may ever have in your life so just how do you go about being the best mentor you can be? Well, as a general rule, it tends to vary as every mentee is different but here are just some of the basics that tend to apply to just about anyone.
The first thing you need to know is patience is a virtue. It may be a bit cliche but that does not make it any less true. If you do not have this quality, you will not be able to mentor someone in the proper way. You see, the process by which you edify yourself does not just happen overnight. Sometimes it can take years, maybe even decades for mentees to go from where they are to where they want to be which brings me to my next point.
As a mentor, your job is to ensure that you teach your protege all that you can until the point where he or she is ready to take on that type of mentor role. Once they have reached that stage, the mentee does not necessarily have to take on a protege of their own but can if they so choose. So as a mentor, patience is one of the best weapons in your arsenal.
One of the others is knowledge. No matter what type of subject you’re trying to educate your mentee on, you need to have at least some idea of what you’re talking about. The last thing you want to do is lead them astray or leave them misinformed. At the end of the day, that will not be a good thing for anyone. This is why it is imperative that you are one of the utmost authorities on whatever it is you are trying to teach them.
Next, it is important to be kind. In addition to being a mentor, you always want to be a friend to the person you are trying to educate. So if you come across as rude, standoffish, or aloof, you will most likely drive them away & cause them to seek another mentor who is much nicer. So you want to try & bond with them not just on a mental level but also on an emotional level as well.
One of the last things I want to mention is reliability. It is imperative that you are there for your mentee whenever they need it. If they don’t feel like they can count on you to be there whenever you need them they will not want to be your protege for much longer. So you need to make them realize that your door is always open to them. So as long as you follow all of these steps, you should be on the right track to becoming the best mentor you can be.