Mentoring Program - Working together

Mentoring Relationship Success tips


Many mentee/mentor relationships are unsuccessful due to unavailability. Talk about this upfront. How often will you meet? What days are best? Fridays at noon? How should the mentor schedule with you?

Understanding relationship goals

As a mentee, what advice/support/guidance are you seeking? Will this be a formal or informal relationship?

List of topics to discuss

Although the mentee should drive the discussion topics – they may need guidance. Be prepared with a topic or topics for each meeting. Mentoring is more than showing up to receive information from an oracle. Remember “Expect support, not miracles”

Assignment ideas

A mentor that gives small assignments may help motivate mentee, and also helps them with their learning goals. You need to understand the mentees workload. Read a book, take an assessment, interview this person, take this class…


Every month it’s good to check in to see how the relationship is working. Be open to feedback. Are they getting anything out of the sessions? Are there too many distractions? Could we be doing anything differently?

Identify when to say good-bye

All relationships ebb and flow. The decision to end a mentoring relationship should primarily be based on the mentee’s learning development plan. Have the objectives been met? Are you receiving the level of guidance or support that you need? Is someone else better suited to provide guidance? Regular check-ins will help determine when the relationship should end. Alamo PMI suggests that this program last no longer than six months. Gather lessons learned.

Mentor and Mentee Roles

mentor roles mentee roles

Getting Acquainted

  • How long have you been in your current role?
  • What is your current role?
  • What do you like best/least about your current role?
  • What successes have you had in your role?  Why was it successful?
  • What accomplishments are you most proud to have achieved?
  • Personally? Professionally?
  • What are your plans for 3 years from now? What are your plans for 5 years from now?

Setting Expectations

  • What do you see as the role of a Mentor?  Role of the Mentee?
  • What ground rules should we set and agree to hold each other?
  • Open, Candid, Timely, Confidentiality, etc.
  • Any off limit topics?
  • What challenges will we encounter?  How can we overcome them?
  • What area of focus shall we address?  Pick 1-2 or a skill.
  • How should be communicate between meetings.
  • Best time to meet?  Location?
  • Any urgent issues or difficult conversations we should begin to address first?