“Mentoring is a brain to pick, an ear to listen, and a push in the right direction” – Dr Ekwow Spio-Garbrah. As you begin your journey toward becoming a mentor, you will need to thoroughly understand the role of mentoring. Most of us have had a supervisor, a boss or coach who has been a positive influence in our lives. These individuals may have impacted out lives as, delegators, role models, cheerleaders, policy enforcers, advocates and friends. As a mentor we anticipate that you too will have a positive impact on the lives of your mentees. Mentors understand the need to assume a number of different roles during the course of a mentoring relationship. Successful mentors generally possess these qualities:
- A sincere desire to support the development of young people
- An active listener
- Drive and diligence
- Personal integrity
- Flexibility and openness
As you and your student mentees begin building a relationship and begin to explore their values, interests and goals, you will start to build a trusting relationship which will ultimately have a positive effect on their lives particularly in helping to develop their confidence, career goals and aspirations. Mentors can also benefit from the relationship, as they will learn more about themselves and also develop their mentoring skills. Mentoring is a shared and mutual opportunity for learning and growth.