TIERNEY’S TIPS for Being a Successful Mentor & Mentee

I facilitated a discussion on mentoring programs among HR professionals from CPA firms throughout the U.S. Interesting findings are in my article in Accounting Today.

I admit to having made some assumptions on how this conversation might go and was surprised by some of the answers to my questions as well as what surrounded the motivation and the challenges that these programs presented

As a compliment to the article I wrote which appeared in today’s Accounting Today, I am adding some content which was left out due to their word constraints.  Here are my tips for being an effective mentor – and mentee.  Read on:

For the Mentor:
·         Commit to getting to know your mentee. Shares stories of your own struggles in order to make them feel comfortable

·         Try to put yourself in their shoes

·         Actively listen and ask thought-provocative, open-ended questions

·         Try to help them figure out what they want – or, more importantly, identify the essence of what they want

·         Encourage them to figure out next steps for themselves, rather than tell them what to do

·         Regularly initiate meetings with your mentee by friendly, sincere invitation

For the Mentee:
·         Honor the time and commitment from your mentor

·         Be brave and open up about your dreams, goals, and areas for improvement (in a professional, accountable manner)

·         Realize that, in a multi-generation workplace, you each have things to learn from each other

·         Accept all feedback as positive – the kudos as well as suggestions for improvement or alternative solutions to an issue or problem
·        Actively listen and ask lots of questions

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