Mentoring, coaching, teaching, and leading are few terminologies that are used interchangeably. Keeping the explanation simple for now, all the mentioned advisory-genre terms have a different context of reference. Though each one of them possesses individual scope of guidance style, ‘mentoring relationships’ are the ones difficult to be found or to be precise it’s a bond without any book-bound definition.
Mentoring is basically a communication-based relationship wherein an expert (irrespective of the age, gender or race) lends a helping hand to the learner, in any set-up. There are no exact commands to follow but a lot of discussions happen between a mentor and a mentee to travel deep down the subject matter. This relationship may last for as short as a lunch meeting or as long as a lifetime.
Getting an empathetic mentor or being an amazing mentor, both are complex achievements at any stage of life. Mentors are the trusted guides with whom an individual can share the in-depth feelings and thoughts; here the discussions may go beyond the professional or personal environment. On the opposite side, mentors are the ones who guide the mentees, taking an unbiased holistic approach rather than using a scientifically proven framework.
To begin with, let us take a tour to types of mentors to extract the best out of the mentoring relationship.
TYPES OF MENTORS
We all have people in our lives like friends or colleagues to whom we speak up about everything. These individuals are mentors in disguised because one may initiate open discussions with them on any topic without any fear, bias or reprisal. The relationships with these types of mentors never go wrong because they know you in and out. They will celebrate your successes, or bear with your struggles, or join you to bring you back from a difficult situation. You always know the disguised mentors are just two blocks away from you!
Also known as ad-hoc mentors, these are the people with special expertise. You may not remain connected with them all the time, but whenever complicated situations arise, they are just a call away.
Do remember, the short-term mentors may not give you the direct answers to your problems but lead you to a groundbreaking solution by filling up you with all the resources needed to reach there.
Contender as Mentor
Or we can call them as the challengers. They are a bit different types of mentors. You may not find a comfort zone with them yet they are the ones who will always stretch your productivity level to the next level.
The contender mentors will question your working style, behavior, or actions and call for the justification. They will force to think beyond the horizon and take a broader approach while finalizing anything concrete.
Do not take their style in a negative aspect. In fact, they will be the first one to appreciate you on your big feats.
These are the most obvious category mentors. Your parents are your first mentors who encouraged you to pursue your dreams. Meanwhile, they guided you to figure out the upcoming life issues. And, to be true, their pieces of advice are generally effective.
Other than parents, you have teachers, who, with their bank of information exposed you to the unknowns of worldly life. They shared lessons with you, leveraging the depth of their experience and packed you with attitude, skills, and knowledge necessitated to grow further.