MENTORING FAQ

 

On this page, we’ve listed a few common concerns you may have. We understand that committing to mentor someone comes with a lot of responsibility and may feel like new territory. You may worry that you won’t know what to do. You may have more experience that you think. Have you ever given someone advice or helped someone work through a challenge? Have you ever given advice to a family member or a friend?

By joining this mentoring program, you are simply formalizing your commitment to help develop another person. You commit to sharing your life experiences, lessons learned and best practices to help someone else achieve success.

 

W h a t   i f   w e   d o n ’ t   m a k e   a   c o n n e c t i o n   r i g h t   a w a y ?

It’s not easy to trust a stranger. It may take a while to build trust. Don’t interpret caution as rejection. Your mentee may not show it — in fact, he may not even know it fully — but your help is definitely wanted. Don’t withdraw. Keep sharing. It will all pay off in the end.

 

W h a t   i f   w e   f i n d   t h a t   w e   d o n ’ t   h a v e   m u c h   i n   c o m m o n ?

Initially, there will likely be differences in age, race, religion, education or gender identification. However, these are not insurmountable barriers. Actually, experienced mentors often report that mentoring a person from a different background broadened their own horizons and deepened their understanding of other people and cultures. Don’t rush to conclusions. Your commonalities will surface as you both invest time in the mentor/mentee relationship.

 

W h a t   i f   m y   m e n t e e   s h a r e s   s o m e t h i n g   v e r y   s e r i o u s   w i t h  m e ?

It is common for mentoring relationships to develop and thrive without any major challenges, but some times things happen that raise concerns. As a mentor, you have a very important role that takes on many responsibilities. However, you are not expected to provide family counseling, medical or psychological treatment. There are professionals who are trained and qualified to provide these services. Contact your Suits for Sons volunteer staff if you need assistance guiding your mentee to the appropriate source of professional help.

 

W h a t   i f   I   m a k e   a   m i s t a k e ?

No one is perfect. Just be there for your mentee. Listen and hear what’s being said. Do your best to counsel and not judge. Some people are more ready than others for a mentor. Some may even test your commitment. Try not to take this personally. Just keep giving it your best. If you have specific concerns, talk to your Suits for Sons staff.

 

W h a t   i f   m y   a v a i l a b i l i t y   f o r   m e n t o r i n g   c h a n g e s ?

This is an understandable and very serious concern. Mentoring is a deep commitment. However, things happen that are outside of your control.

Life happens to all of us. You may experience changes like a job relocation, sickness or a change in schedule. Unless the circumstance is absolutely unavoidable, It’s best to stay in your mentoring relationship and make good on your commitment. However, if you must withdraw from the mentoring relationship, notify your Suits for Sons staff right away.

 

H O W   M U C H   T I M E   I S   I N V O L V E D ?

Mentors can expect to spend about 3 – 4 hours each month meeting with their mentees. Mentors are also invited to attend Suits for Sons events.

 

W H A T   Q U A L I F I C A T I O N S   A R E   R E Q U I R E D   T O   B E   A   M E N T O R ?

The ideal mentor would have more than 1o years of progressive experience in a professional field or have been involved in a startup and have entrepreneurial experience. You should also desire to make a positive difference in developing a future professional.

 

H O W   D O   Y O U   M A T C H   P A R T I C I P A N T S   W I T H   M E N T O R S ?

Mentors and mentees are matched on a case-by-case basis. Both the mentors and mentees wishes are taken into consideration. While there are no guarantees, we usually try to create equilibrium of personality, interest, and opportunity.

 

W H A T   I F   T H E   S T U D E N T   A N D   I   D O N ’ T   F I T ?

It happens – not often; but it happens. This will be a mutually voluntary relationship. In such cases, either the mentor or the mentee can terminate the mentoring experience. We do our best to avoid these situations, but when it happens, we are committed to trying again to find the right fit.