The mentoring process

Section subject: The phases in the mentoring process.

Introduction

The mentoring process may be seen as a number of phases within which communication takes place. This may include exchanges of information, ideas, views, feelings, behaviour, facts, stories and so on.

This section will take a closer look at the different phases of the process and specifically the most important part of the beginning phase – developing a relationship.

Learning objectives

This section helps you to:

The mentoring process

The mentoring process generally has four distinguishable phases. These are Beginning, Developmental, Confirmation and Ending.

Beginning phase

Developmental phase

Period where the mentor and mentee:

This phase may last 4– 6 months.

Confirmation phase

Period where mentor and mentee:

Ending

The mentor relationship has come to an end. This may be a natural end or it may be that you both agreed that the relationship would only last a specific length of time. This is usually 9–12 months from the first meeting.

Initial meeting

Developing a relationship is probably the most important part of the beginning phase of the mentoring process.

Some areas you may want to explore include:

Developing the relationship

The first meeting is all about setting parameters. Make sure you use boundaries to preserve and nurture the relationship.

Developing a relationship is probably the most important part of the beginning phase of the mentoring process.

Remember that it is important that your colleague feels valued, worthwhile, understood and is prepared to trust you. It is important that you are personally prepared, respectful and non-judgemental.

Developing the relationship – dos and don’ts

Make a list of dos and don’ts with respect to relationship-building skills.

Final word

Developing a relationship is probably the most important part of the beginning phase of the mentoring process. This is the period when the mentor and mentee get to know one another and set parameters for the relationship.

During the developmental phase of the relationship, the mentor should aim to build rapport with the mentee and develop trust in the relationship.

The confirmation period is when the mentor and mentee are comfortable with one another. They should both be willing to explore ideas and accept critical questioning.

You might like to reflect on the issues arising from this section and make some notes for the future.


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