Leaders need mentors. Few of us can truly be as effective as we'd like without a solid mentoring relationship in place. Once you've secured a mentor, kick off the relationship the right way. Here are three things you can do as a mentee to help create a successful partnership:
- Get to know your mentor. Don't immediately ask for advice. Take the time to acquaint yourself with your mentor. Ask questions about her experience and working style, and share in return.
- Air concerns. You may be nervous about admitting your mistakes and fears. Establish an expectation of confidentiality up front, and remember this discretion should be mutual.
- Set milestones. To gauge progress, set goals and chart a path to achieve them. To expedite the process, draft a list of milestones and ask your mentor for feedback.
Adapted from Guide to Getting the Mentoring You Need (HBR OnPoint Collection).