Mentorship is often an overlooked area in an employee’s developing career, but the significance of a mentoring relationship cannot be overstated. At an individual level, mentorship becomes a symbiotic relationship between mentor and mentee. For the organization as a whole, mentors provide long-term financial growth and build a legacy that maintains the company’s vision, mission and culture. Here, we pride ourselves on creating and maintaining mentorships that guide our associates throughout their journey at Medxcel. Mentoring is important for anyone in the healthcare industry, a field that is ever-changing and requires consistent, meaningful conversations.
Finding Success in Mentorship
A key ingredient in successful relationships is allowing time for the mentor and mentee to build trust. A common misconception is that a mentor is expected to provide an opportunity or a job – this should not be the focus and takes away from the relationship. In a mentorship, the mentor and mentee need to talk about what is important to them – whether that is cultural, spiritual or otherwise. Different needs have to be met at different points in a career, so looking for a mentor that can offer advice with a track record of personal success is a valuable person to have.
Another common misconception about mentoring is that a mentee should always be younger and newer in their career, while a mentor needs to be more experienced. In reality, mentoring is up, down and across any demographic and dynamic. Remember that a mentor/mentee relationship is mutually beneficial; it is more than just a checked box on a resume.
In the same token, a mentee should be a curious partner in this relationship. The mentee should have the confidence to ask questions of the mentor and be humble enough to say, “I don’t know this.” Ask questions and be open to listening, and most importantly, have the willingness to follow through. The mentee should possess a high level of self-knowledge and be willing to explore their strengths and weaknesses, and the mentor should offer constructive feedback and encouragement. Every aspect of the mentoring relationship should be intentional.
Advice for Mentors and Guidance for New Mentees
A mentor becomes a spokesperson for their industry based on their knowledge and life experiences. The willingness to share these experiences is what makes for a good mentor. Some people find themselves in a mentorship role and become unsure of where to take it. If you find yourself in this position, embrace it. Sharing about your failures and challenges is what makes you a valuable mentor.
Another misconception for mentees is that your mentor should be your supervisor – often, this is not the right choice and is the wrong criteria for choosing a mentor. Mentees should first be looking for someone with a great reputation and integrity, not just for their knowledge and their communication skills but also their character. Look for someone who carries themselves with confidence and has a good reputation inside and outside the company. A good mentor may not necessarily be the top person in the company.
Mentorship Takes Time
Mentorship is meant to be a long-term commitment, not something that just lasts one conversation, one week or one month. It is dependent on where the mentee is at in navigating their career, their needs and the schedules of both parties. A mentee should take it upon themselves to reach out to their mentor to develop the relationship. While mentorship relationships are specific to each individual and their circumstances, the best mentorships are the lifelong ones.
Learn more about the importance of navigating mentorships in healthcare in this episode
of our podcast Outside the Patient’s Door. Tune in at outsidethepatientsdoor.com, or find us on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts and more. Steve Long, the President and CEO of Hancock Regional Hospital, and the Vice President of Client Services at Medxcel, Maureen Larkins, dive into their personal experiences with mentorship and the lessons learned throughout their careers.
Interested in learning more about Medxcel’s services? Contact us at email@example.com or 855-633-9235 to see what we can do for you!