Mentoring is a powerful personal development and empowerment tool. It can help you gain a better understanding of your working environment – and how to progress in your career.
It should be driven primarily by you, the mentee, with the mentor supporting and enabling you to take responsibility for your own development. In this the mentor acts as a guide, supporter, sounding board and, sometimes, as a role model.
One-to-one mentoring is based on a positive supportive and confidential relationship, which helps to facilitate a wide range of learning and development. The mentee is the focus, but the process also enables the mentor to develop their own communication and people skills. The mentoring relationship should typically be outside the direct line-management relationship.
Queen’s staff have access to a range of existing mentoring schemes, including those organised centrally, e.g. gender initiative schemes and postdoc group mentoring and also within university schools. These schemes may differ in the groups of staff who participate, but they will have similar mentoring goals, focusing on:
- providing guidance and support for staff
- promoting a productive working environment
- providing an opportunity for personal and career development
- enhancing induction into the workplace
A definition of mentoring at Queen’s was developed by a group of colleagues who mentor and organise mentoring schemes across the University.
“Mentoring is a developmental partnership, in which independent support, outside the line-management structure, is provided by a more experienced colleague, to enable another to progress their knowledge and thinking. Mentoring involves listening, reflecting, encouraging and sharing experience, confidentially, to enable personal and professional learning”
Hear about the benefits of mentoring for mentees and mentors on the Postdoc Group Mentoring Programme