Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Really Great Mentors

I would like to be a really great mentor so I was attracted to Stephen Kohn and Vincent O'Connell's book:  9 Practices of really Great Mentors - How to Inspire and Motivate Anyone.

The book  is a self-actualizing and highly motivational read that portrays the many facets that mentors hold.

Starting off with more than one definition of what a mentor is, this book is incredibly inspiring and practical making it the fitting last book of a three part series by Stephen E. Kohn and Vincent D. O'Connell.

All of the key ideas discussed are applicable in developing a person’s full potential in life to help optimize an organization’s assets and to benefit from their own day to day life.

The use of the terminology ‘stretch goals’ clearly defines the role that a mentor plays in helping the protégé identify the process in hopes to accomplish their goals given that stretch goals are not reached immediately, but framed from a longer-term perspective.

Including a chapter explaining the difference between coaching versus mentoring someone was a nice touch as often times these two terms get muddled in the mentoring role.

9 Powerful Practices of Really Great Mentors displays positive and motivational messages that encourage the growth of the relationship between mentor and protégé. The relationship that develops between two individuals is mind-enriching and possesses the responsibility that both sides have to uphold in order for the relationship can grow. 

The mention of EQ (emotional quotient) having to be either near or at the same level as IQ (intelligent quotient) in chapter 6 acknowledges that there are other ways to measure intelligence and that not just one form of intelligence can define the human mind.

What was a bit disconcerting was stating that, “certain people might be at some sort of disadvantage within the organization or professional environment,” in chapter 3 followed with the confirmation that women are seen in this regard.

With many things in life, it is best to draft out your goals and strategy before putting your plans into actions. 9 Powerful Practices of Really Great Mentors is a great resource to use as a guide and inspiration in becoming the best mentor for your next protégé.

Quotes from the book:

"...the better you are at the mentoring role, the more likely your protégé will benefit from the relationship."

The moment of self-actualization for me is when I read, "...what I am aware of empowers me, and what I am unaware of controls me..."

A mentor's mantra should be, "seek first to understand, than to be understood. It is listening that is crucial along with fully understanding what is going on with your protégé- giving sound advice with context." 

Keep your eyes on the stars, but keep your feet on the ground – Theodore Roosevelt. 

There is an interesting article in HBR on the reasons not to send emails after work hours.  Interesting points.  It conflicts with my efficiency slightly.  I like to get things off my plate.

And cactus from my recent trip to Palm Springs where the weather is perfect.  The citrus fruit is unbelievable.  And the people are nice (like everywhere else)


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