In the summer issue of YALS the article “Learning from Each Other: Successful Mentoring/Protege Relationships” provides an overview of the skills and knowledge that successful mentors and protégés bring to mentoring relationships. Ideas include that:
- Both mentors and protégés have to be self-reflective and understand their own skills and needs as they get ready to mentor someone else and/or seek support from another person.
- Mentors need to know how to facilitate thinking while protégés need to listen and know how to ask good questions.
- Mentors need to be open to learning from their protégés and protégés have to be open to failure and learning from that failure.
Readers of YALS most likely have some ideas of their own about successful relationships of this kind with experiences that highlight what works and doesn’t work. Now is the time to let others know – from your perspective what does a successful mentor/protege relationship entail?
Add your thoughts, ideas, questions, and comments on this topic in the comments. (You may also want to respond to the thoughts, ideas, questions, and comments that others post.)
YALSA members and YALS subscribers can read the article (and the full issue) online in the Summer 2017 digital edition (Login required).
I bet that many YALSAblog readers have been fortunate enough to have a professional mentor. Maybe that experience was serendipitous and the mentoring relationship wasn’t planned but nonetheless ended up being an important part of professional growth. I’ve been fortunate enough in my career to be mentored both spontaneously and through specific planning. Each has been a fantastic experience and I am grateful to the mentors I’ve had in my professional life.
I’ve also been a mentor and was fortunate enough to act as a mentor as a part of YALSA’s formal virtual mentoring program. That too was a great experience. Not only did I get to help a newish library staff member move forward in their work, I also learned a lot from the people I worked with. Learning about their work, their questions, and the projects they wanted to pursue helped me to think more about what are the best ways to serve teens with and through libraries.
Now you have the chance to make a difference in a library staff member’s life and also perhaps gain some new insights yourself. YALSA’s virtual mentoring program is accepting applications for both mentors and proteges through June 1. It’s a perfect opportunity. And, if you know someone who you think would be a great mentor please pass this information on to them.