Won’t You Be My Mentor?

How to Set Up a Mentoring Agreement

We often have many mentors throughout our lives, some of them casual relationships and others more formal with specific goals. To get the most out of your mentorship, it’s helpful to create a mentorship agreement that clearly outlines expectations, says Neen James, productivity expert and speaker.

In writing your agreement, James offers these suggestions:

  • Create a vision of what you want to learn and draft an outline. Make a list of your expectations—the experience you hope to gain from your mentor—to help formulate your goals.
  • Review your overall vision to identify specific goals. A list of goals will give focus to the mentoring relationship.
  • Realize the mentor doesn’t do the work for you. You do it yourself. The mentor’s role is to share experience, but you do the hard work.
  • What will be the length of time for the mentoring relationship? Set a specific time frame to give the mentorship a sense of focus or urgency that it might not have otherwise.

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Journalist, podcaster and southpaw Shelby Skrhak is the former director of digital content and social media for SUCCESS.com. Before joining SUCCESS magazine, Shelby launched the weekly suburban newspaper Plano Insider, and covered topics ranging from cops and courts to transportation and fashion. Her handwriting should be a font.

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