TIP of the DAY
Wednesday, January 22, 2014
How Long Do I Mentor? Part 1
As the Founder of a Mentoring organization that has been in Buffalo for over 12 years, we believe that long term mentoring is the best case scenario. In some cases, we have mentored young people for over 10 years - and they still need guidance. You may not have 10 years, so how long should you plan on mentoring somebody?
One of the drawbacks in the traditional mentoring model is the inability for a mentor to continue the relationship for extended periods of time. This can be particularly damaging, especially if a young person has a history of abandonment or rejection in their lives. A good antidote to the problem of not having enough mentors is to form a mentoring collaborative. That's the goal of Mentor Force.
We all need mentors. Most of us are busy in many areas and life changes quickly. Mentoring is a commitment that should be taken deadly serious. I used the term "deadly" on purpose because here in the City of Buffalo we have seen too many young men die as a result of violence and too few mentors. Please be aware that you can do more harm than good by not fulfilling your word as a mentor. Do not step onto the mentoring playing field unless you can finish the game.
Several avenues of mentoring can be traveled over short periods of time. A business mentor, coach or teacher may have somebody mentor them for as few as 3 months, 6 months or a year. If you are guiding a young person in a a one on one mentoring initiative, I would strongly suggest extending your relationship for at least a year. It takes time to build a relationship. It takes commitment, compassion and perseverance to really make a difference in someone. Whatever the length of your mentoring relationship, be open and honest about how much time you have to share and your goals for the relationship.
Thanks for your time.
Go do something nice for somebody.
Please contact us if we can help you teach your mentors the best way to build mentoring relationships. firstname.lastname@example.org