Mentor Meeting: Tips for the First Meeting with Your Mentor

Mentor Meeting: Tips for the First Meeting with Your Mentor

A recent trend among working professionals is seeking mentorship to tackle their problems. However, most people are clueless about what a mentoring session and the first mentor meeting entail. If you are worried about how to prepare for an appointment with your mentor and questions that you should ask during a mentoring session, then this article is for you.        

Remain Focused 

By remaining focused, you will ensure that your meeting with your mentor will be productive for you and worth your mentor's time. A mentoring session usually lasts 15-60 minutes, and you must ensure that every second counts.  

You must also keep your expectations in check. Try to be practical. That is not a realistic approach if you feel that you can find all your answers in one session. You must realize that mentors are not wizards. They cannot cover all the issues in a single sitting.     

Your mentor meeting agenda should try to pinpoint those issues that need immediate attention. Brief your mentor about the key challenge or challenges in your first meeting. Another thing that you must mention to your mentor is your definition of success. This can help your mentor reverse engineer a path to help you reach your goal.     

Prepare Ahead 

After finalizing your mentor, try to learn more about him/her. You can also look for their past roles and prepare accordingly. This will help you understand the mentor and be something you can discuss during your session. Additionally, you will have a better idea of how the mentor can help you and you can build rapport.  

Value their Time 

It may sound trivial, but you must value and respect your mentor's time. For example, try to convey this to your mentor if you are running late. In other words, do not waste their time. Even if you cannot show up on a particular day, let them know in advance. If the mentor sees that you understand the value of time and are not there to waste theirs and your time, it will give the mentor a much better impression of you and your work ethic.   

You must also ensure that you are not the only person talking during your mentor meeting. You do not need to tell them about your whole life. You will find plenty of time once you begin to work together. Therefore, try to keep yourself in check and be mindful of the time we have spent talking. You may try a simple trick for this. Keep a watch and notice if you have spoken for over 2 minutes. If you have, then pause for a few seconds off. Your mentor did not call you just to hear you speak. Hence allow them to speak and be attentive to their every word. You may be an articulate speaker, but nobody can help you if you are unwilling to listen to them.  

Forge a Genuine Relationship 

If you need a mentor, you must realize it will be a long relationship. A mentor is not a short-term solution, if you need any positive outcome, you must be involved with them for a long time. Therefore, try to build a genuine bond with them. Practice small gestures in every relationship, like being respectful, appreciative, polite, etc. Even before your first meeting, try to spend some time on the phone with them, and never forget to send a thank you message.  

You can also interact with them on social media by following them and liking, commenting, and sharing their posts. Always make sure to tell them if you have found their advice helpful. This will also help the mentors realize that their efforts bear fruit.  

Read Also: How to Make the Most of a Conversation with a Business Mentor

Be Honest with Your Mentor 

A critical aspect of any kind of mentorship is honesty. If you are not honest with your mentor, then there is no way they can help you. Never shy away from discussing topics you are uncomfortable with, as it will also help establish a trustworthy relationship. The more you provide them, the more they can understand your situation and problems and eventually provide you with better advice. While dealing with any mentor, you must also make it a habit to accept positive feedback. This is what will help you grow.  

Respect the Boundaries 

You must also realize that other than being your mentor, they are humans, and they have other duties. Your mentor may be mentoring other individuals as well. Hence, you must engage with them during the time assigned to you. You may be tempted to inform them about any unforeseen development or have follow-up questions after your meeting, but refrain from doing that. Your mentor's time is valuable, and they will observe if you are following their advice or making any improvements. Hence try not to disturb them until you have made any real progress.  

Extend Your Assistance 

While this may sound outlandish, you must be courteous and let them know you are also available if they need help. You may not be capable or qualified enough to help them but simply saying this will strengthen your bond.  

These essential tips will help during your first meeting with your mentor.  

The Editorial Team

The Editorial Team

Hi there, we're the editorial team at WomELLE. We offer resources for business and career success, promote early education and development, and create a supportive environment for women. Our magazine, "WomLEAD," is here to help you thrive both professionally and personally.

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