Then there is this brief article by Gerry Riskin on female mentoring. Gerry compliments the use of mentoring as a career building tool and challenges law firms to embrace it beyond a fad or fashion.
Here are my thoughts on making mentoring a viable tool for your firm:
- The mentoring relationship IS a relationship. It requires a chemistry between two individuals not found in a spread sheet or personality profile. Not every senior attorney in your firm will be selected as one, and not every person that needs one can find it within your firm.
- Selecting a mentor should be in the hands of the person wanting a mentor. Only they can pick the person they will listen to and honor what is advised.
- Treat mentoring as a therapeutic relationship where progress is not measured in numbers but in personal growth. A mentor helps someone mature in their profession and it is the maturing process that produces the result.
- Never ask for the details of what happens between a mentor and mentoree. That MUST remain private.
- To enable the mentoring process schedule roundtables of mentors to discuss best practices, and schedule roundtables of mentorees to discuss what they are learning.
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