The Mentor / Mentee Value Exchange

Originally posted on David by Design

For the past five years or so, I have been informally mentoring people. I’m happy to report that some of the earliest are ridiculously successful and I still keep in touch. I’m also a mentee to a few people I look up to. Here’s what I’ve learned so far:

Understand Your Motivation Before You Become A Mentor or Mentee

You’re entering an informal agreement and you should know what’s motivating you and clearly articulate that to the other person. In my case, I realized I had not been seeking out mentors so becoming one was an intentional act.

Embrace That It’s A Two Way Learning Street

Regardless if you decide to seek or provide mentorship, you are accepting the role of both teacher and student. As a mentee you will be teaching your mentor on a daily basis. Understand this dynamic works both ways.

Be A Mentor Means Being An Active Listener

If you want to become a valuable mentor, you either are a serious active listener or want to get better at it. Don’t become a mentor if you don’t value listening. It’s the number one requirement.

Being A Mentee Means Being You

If you’re not comfortable being yourself, you may not be ready for mentorship. Being a mentee means bringing your true self to the informal arrangement. There’s no room for anything less.

The Mentor/Mentee Value Exchange Transcends Professional Development

Being professional is a core value of my being. I strive to act ethically. I’m also a follower of radical candor and encourage mentees to explore a degree of personal life as part of professional development.

Trust Is The Literal Foundation Of Mentor/Mentee relationships

In every engagement where I have been both mentee as well as mentor, I seek to build trust. It’s the bedrock of the Mentor/Mentee value exchange. And it also flows both ways.

Don’t Become A Mentor or Mentee If You Can’t Make The Time

Time is our most precious asset and it’s limited. We have demanding projects, family duties, self care, etc. all competing for time. If you can’t prioritize being either, you aren’t ready for it.

The Mentor/Mentee Value Exchange Is A Human Investment

In the age of crypto and a red hot housing market — becoming a mentee or mentor is an investment in another human being. If you value the ROI that comes with human investment, you’ll benefit from being either.

--

--

--

Marketer, strategist, thinker and doer. I write about human behaviors and the relationship we have with technology and brands

Love podcasts or audiobooks? Learn on the go with our new app.

Recommended from Medium

Anxiety, Sleeping Tablets and Panic But I Still Had To Quit My Job

Saturday Cup of Joe from Detroit

Consider these 3 things before pursuing a career as a programmer/coder

Coleen Haines of Your Town Media Training: Five Things I Wish Someone Told Me Before I Started My…

An idea may take 10 minutes to create. Or 42 years.

Camera Lens Contact — The art of eye contact in a post-pandemic age

12 Rules for LinkedIn: An Antidote to a Chaotic Profile

Lisa Quackenbush

Lisa Quackenbush — Boys and Girls Club of Greenwich Youth of the Year

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
David Armano

David Armano

Marketer, strategist, thinker and doer. I write about human behaviors and the relationship we have with technology and brands

More from Medium

When you laugh and cry at the same time..

What if nobody wants me? — The emotional roller-coaster of a job search

Facts to know before you go for ‘Job Hunt’ as Developer

Want to Leave the Law?