If you’re taking an intern onboard, you’ll recognize that the opportunity to mentor someone reach their full potential is an exciting thing. The mentor/mentee relationship goes both ways. Your intern will be eager to learn and your guidance is what will help them feel more confident in their new role. So, let’s get into it – here are our top tips to be a truly #MarvellousMentor!
Before you begin planning for your mentee, it’s important to determine what a successful mentor/mentee relationship will look like. It’s a case-by-case thing. You want to be sure they integrate happily into their new work environment, and to make sure they are secure in the work. Set SMART goals(Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Time-bound) to make the most of your time as a mentor. Ideally, this is a conversation you will have with your mentee. You might also consider asking them whatthey would like out of their time with you – it will help you align your goals together, and open conversations are best (more on that below)!
Independence and support go hand-in-hand
Consider giving your intern a little more freedom than you’re comfortable with, but follow up often. You may be happily surprised at the outcome (Here’s a recent blog that will show you just what they can do!) Remember that a fresh face brings a fresh perspective. Give them space to express their ideas – they might give you some new insights about the industry, or show you a great new skill for the job. With that said, though, even the best intern might flail a bit without support. Be sure to provide regular check-in sessions. Consider providing a scaffolded plan for your time together, and let them know you are an open ear if they have any questions or concerns.
More than an Intern
To be truly marvelous, be sure you are taking a genuine interest in your mentee as a person. Hold open conversations that aren’t just about the tasks at hand and make an effort to learn more about them than their working style. Listen actively and invest a great attitude into your mentorship. Of course, this should go both ways – a marvelous mentee should respect you equally! Try to catch up regularly, especially if you are a mentor to more than one mentee. They will feel a little less in the deep end, and are more likely to become invested in the work if they know that their effort is really valued.
Hurdles to stepping stones
The best way to be a #MarvelousMentor is to foster an open and friendly dialogue throughout the mentoring process. It’ll turn hurdles into stepping stones! Showing genuine enthusiasm to teach your intern new skills will go a long way. It’ll also make your intern feel way more engaged and comfortable. Though you are here to teach, don’t underestimate the power of listening – your mentee will come to you with the questions that will fill in the gaps, and your answers will help them ace the role. Keep a distress radar going. If they seem wobbly, they might just need a bit of extra structure in an area that is new to them (or they might just need a good vent). Check-in, ask how they’re doing regularly, and offer honest feedback.
We hope these key tips help you to become the most marvelous mentor you can be! We’ve written a couple of blogs with handy tips like these in the past – if you’d like to know more about how to support an intern during their first week, click here, and here’s ANZ’s How-To On Effective Mentoring!
It’s still possible to register to hire interns for summer 2020! Although we have already managed to find 335 students an internship, we have 2247 amazing, talented, awesome students on our platform keen to help you with your next project. Click here if you’d like to check out how to get in touch with them