Phases in Mentoring Relationships

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Mentoring > Best Practices > Phases in Mentoring Relationships

Phases in Mentoring Relationships
Doug Lawrence, Entrepreneur, Canada, SIG Leader
There are a number of different research positions on the various phases of a mentoring relationship. I have condensed it down to three:
  1. The Trusting phase
  2. The Learning and Development phase
  3. The Maintenance phase
Each phase provides for some outcomes that benefit the mentor and the mentee/protege in their growth. Each phase is based on the previous phase and its duration is driven by the mentor and mentee/protege.

Phases in Mentoring Process
Jaap de Jonge, Editor, Netherlands
Hi Doug, looks like an interesting subject. Could you perhaps add a brief description of the characteristics of each of the 3 phases? And perhaps who thought of these phases?

Phases in Mentoring Process
Doug Lawrence, Entrepreneur, Canada, SIG Leader
  1. The trusting phase is all about building the trusted relationship. This is where as the mentor you may need to share something personal in order to build the trust. The trusting phase can be one meeting or several, dependent on your ability to build trust.
  2. The learning and development phase is where the heavy lifting in the relationship is done. This is where you both work together to grow personally and professionally. Initially you would meet weekly, moving to every two weeks and then to once a month.
  3. The maintenance phase is where you are still maintaining the relationship but the meetings are less frequent and are sometimes just touching base to see how things are going. Contact can be every 6 months or perhaps once a year. This would be something that you would both agree on.
You can move back to the learning and development phase from maintenance if need be.
I came up with these three phases.

Trust in All Phases of Mentoring Process
Diana Chee, Student (MBA), Singapore, Member
Thanks for this. I feel that the 'trust' issue is relevant not just at the beginning but throughout the working relationship. As I reflect this with my relationship with my management, I am thankful and grateful for the trusting relationship. Work gets done, solutions found, we are always moving forwards. A happy working place.

Phases in Mentoring or Coaching?
Andrew Blaine, Business Consultant, South Africa, Member
According to both Professors Clutterbuck and Mbali, mentoring is a defined programme with a set aim/objective that runs for a specified period and the result is then confirmed after the completion of the process. How does this scenario match that defined by Doug Lawrence above.
In my opinion, the scenario outlined above refers more to a coaching than a mentoring environment?

Phases of Mentoring
David Clutterbuck, Professor, United Kingdom, Member
The phases we have defined from observation and interview are:
  • Rapport building
  • Direction setting
  • Heightened Learning
  • Winding up (Editor: ~ending, summarizing): Winding up is important, because relationships that drift away are usually seen by both parties as unsatisfactory.
  • Moving on

Mentoring Relationships: Phase One TRUSTing
MARTIN Christian, Consultant, France, Member
I agree with Dough, building trust should be the aim of both Mentor and Mentee (or would you say Mentoree?) - Trust is the cornerstone of fruitful conversations.

Trust is the Door to Mentoring and Coaching
Angel Guevara, Strategy Consultant, Spain, Member
Trust means a peer to peer relation from one person with the other, for example from coach to manager. I agree trust is the door to the entire process, whether it is mentoring or coaching.
If you just want to give a speech you don't need it.

Trust is Key in Team Mentoring and Coaching
MARTIN Christian, Consultant, France, Member
@Angel Guevara: Yes, Angel, and I think it doesn't only apply to one on one relationships, it's even more important when you are coaching or mentoring a team.

Mentoring, Apprenticeship and Trust
Andrew Blaine, Business Consultant, South Africa, Member
In the good, old, bad days an apprentice was assigned to a journeyman for training. There was no consideration of trust, the assignment simply took effect. Thereafter trust developed between the two parties, based on the effectiveness of the training and the value of information passed both ways between them.
Yes, trust is important, but is it either essential or a pre-requisite? I wonder!

Special Interest Group Leader
Doug Lawrence

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