Note from JJ: A few years ago, I was approached to “mentor” an employee (not one if my direct reports. I soon learned from the senior executive who asked me to do this that he actually wanted me to “fix” this person. That’s not mentoring. Dan Rockwell has written a great post on what mentoring should be about…
I knew too much when I was younger. Now that I’m older, I have the same problem. But, the thing that most expands leadership is the belief that we don’t know.
Those who think they know are worse off than those who know they don’t.
Everyone who’s afraid to look dumb, remains dumb. We learn and grow in community. Mentors grow us most.
But, know-it-all’s outgrow community.
Mentor-ready is ready to:
1. Not-know with an open mind.
2. Believe people, more than circumstances, change us.
3. Have confidence, even though you don’t have all the answers.
4. Shift strategies.
5. Expand options.
6. Nurture curiosity.
7. Stop pretending you know when you don’t.
6 gifts of the mentor. Mentors:
1. Give time for reflection. Without a mentor you keep circling the same thoughts.
2. Explore inconsistencies.
3. Dig into priorities.
4. Press for clarity.
5. Instill confidence.
6. Honor growth.
4 marks of lousy mentors:
1. Fix rather than explore.
2. Advise before understanding desired outcomes.
3. Do all the talking.
4. Act like they know.
7 keys to successful mentoring: