There’s a reason 71% of Fortune 500 companies foster employee development by establishing mentor-mentee relationships.
Those are ideal results in terms of staff engagement and workplace culture, but getting your mentorship program there requires a key ingredient: the right mentees.
While every employee is unique, mentees with great potential generally display traits covered by three C’s:
Becoming a mentee is accepting an invitation to receive constructive criticism. At the root of a positive mentorship is the ability to trust their mentor and hear and accept their perspective.
To succeed as a mentee, one needs to have the ability to self-reflect, process feedback on their performance and behavior and understand the need for growth.
Good mentees are often competitive - but not in a self-serving way where they’re driven solely by climbing the career ladder as fast as possible and by any means necessary.
Instead, they display competitiveness through an endless drive to be the best they can in their current role and for their team to perform as well as possible.
Smart competition - and the confidence that may come with it - can also help a mentee build a stronger bond with their mentor. They should be prepared to politely disagree with their mentor’s opinion vs. always accepting it as fact. Those instances of differing opinions are opportunities for positive discussions, which can in turn create a deeper, more valuable relationship.
For a fully successful mentorship, a mentee has to be committed to the program. That starts with an understanding of what they seek from a mentor and the ability to communicate. Then it’s showing up prepared for each meeting, completing assignments and holding themselves accountable to achieve the agreed upon goals and, ultimately, gain their sought-after skills.