What is mentoring?
Mentoring is a learning relationship between two individuals based on a mutual desire for personal and professional development. It’s usually between a person with less experience (mentee) and a more experienced person (mentor). The relationship is a two way street where both parties learn form each other and benefits from the mentoring relationship. Mentoring is also a tool that can improve the lives of both individuals. It can help both parties discover their strengths, develop and improve their skills, and enhances relationships with others. Finally, mentoring connects people to information and resources that can help them reach their personal and professional goals.
Benefits of mentoring
Both mentors and mentees benefit from the mentoring relationship. Here are a few benefits for mentors:
- It’s fun!
- You can achieve personal growth and learn more about yourself
- Improve your self-esteem and feel good that you are making a difference
- You can gain a better understanding of other cultures and develop a greater appreciation for diversity
- Feel more productive and have a better attitude at work
- Enhance your leadership skills
- Your relationships with other people in your life can also be enhanced
Mentoring with conNEXTions
conNEXTions will match mentors with young adults based on interests, schedule and personalities. We will also provide training, ongoing support and resources for mentors and mentees to ensure an effective match. Every young adult will have different goals and will be in different stages of their life. Our goal is to create a mentoring relationship that will last long enough to where the young adult will be confident in themselves, know what steps they need to take to achieve their goals, and be able to go out into the real world on their own.
As a conNEXTions mentor, you will help guide, support and encourage young adults with their career aspirations as well as share insights into your own career. By sharing your own experiences and expertise, you help create awareness, build confidence, and provide opportunities and connections for young adults.
What we are looking for in a mentor:
- A sincere desire to help others
- Respect for younger people
- Ability to identify opportunities
- Active listening skills
In addition to these basic qualities, a good mentor takes the time to get to know their mentee, understand what is important to them, takes initiative, has a willingness to learn and try new things, can motivate and inspire, and can connect their mentee to other people and resources in the community.
What we will expect of mentors:
- Mentors will be expected to meet with their mentee in person, once a month, for a minimum of six months
- Attend a 3 hour mentor orientation training
- Attend training that can help improve mentoring relationship with mentee
- Take mentee to after work and/or networking events
- Help mentee look for job shadowing or internship opportunities through current employer or other connections (conNEXTions will help with this)
- Share knowledge and experiences
- Give advice and support to help the mentee reach their career goals. This may include helping them identify steps to reach their goal, figuring out if they need a degree for their career, and/or determining who else they can to talk to or shadow to learn more about their career interest (conNEXTions will help with this)
- Provide transportation for the mentee to attend monthly one-on-one meetings, workshops and/or events
- Be a positive role model
- Time commitment would be approximately 4 hours per month (2 hours meeting in person and another 2 hours or so if you can take your mentee to a workshop or networking event)
Benefits of mentoring with conNEXTions:
In addition to the benefits mentioned above, you will also have opportunities to attend our workshops and networking events with your mentee, which can help you build skills such as money management, public speaking, and networking skills. These opportunities can also connect you to other great people in our community.
By mentoring with conNEXTions, you will make a big difference in a young adults’ life. Not only does the mentee benefit from the mentoring opportunity, so does our community. Many underrepresented young adults in our community have limited connections and resources to help them reach their personal and professional development goals. Exposure to different types of career fields and opportunities may also be very limited for underrepresented young adults. By being a mentor with conNEXTions, you will help young adults realize their potential, build their knowledge and skills, connect them to opportunities that they may not have, and help them reach their goals.
We’ve also partnered with Dane County TimeBank where you can receive services offered through the TimeBank program in exchange for your time as mentor. Volunteers do so much for our community and partnering with TimeBank is a one way to show our appreciation for all that you do.
So, are you ready to join this awesome team and become a mentor to help make a difference in our community? Please click on the link below to fill out the mentor volunteer application.