How to Mentor Other Apprentices
One of the most useful relationships that you can build at work is with a mentor. A mentor will share their experiences and help you find your path in a new career. Whether you were lucky enough to have a mentor or not, it is still a great idea to mentor other apprentices. As well as passing on what you have learnt it can also help you to reassess your own working life.
Finding Someone to MentorYour company may run a mentor scheme but if not then it may be something that you suggest, or an informal arrangement. The relationship works best if the apprentice and you have something in common and are both equally committed to the process.
Draw on Your Own ExperienceBeing an apprentice is a steep learning curve and you will have learnt a lot during your time in the role. Think back to when you first started your apprenticeship and what you found difficult, or wanted to know. The most useful thing you can offer is practical examples of how you overcame obstacles or developed your skills and confidence as an apprentice.
Listen to ThemTry and put yourself in the shoes of the apprentice you are mentoring and remember how you felt at the time. However, everyone is different and this apprentice may think and deal with things in their own way. You need to open your ears and really listen to what they have to say, their concerns and their areas of weakness.
Learn From ThemBeing a mentor is a two way process. Not only does it greatly help the person you are mentoring but you can also gain a lot from the experience. When you have been in the role for a while it is easy to become blinkered and working with a new recruit can help give you a fresh perspective on the work, your attitude and your working relationships.
Be Open and AvailableIn your role as a mentor is it important that you are committed to making time for the apprentice and being there when they need you. Set regular meetings but also be willing to be contacted in between. While you may need to set boundaries, you will both get much more out of the relationship if you are open and available.
Monitor ProgressYou may decide that you want to monitor progress in a formal way or just through informal chats. Either way, it is important you help the apprentice move forward. By setting goals or measuring progress, you will be able to see the tangible impact that you are having.
Being a mentor is a very rewarding role and as well as playing a key part in the life of the new apprentice, can also help you look at your own career path. You need to take the commitment seriously and be open and available to your mentor when they need you. Make sure that you listen tot their concerns, learn from them and use your own experience to help them develop as an apprentice.