Characteristics of effective mentoring relationships
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Though no two relationships are the same, successful mentoring relationships have certain things in common. Here are the fundamental characteristics necessary for an effective mentoring relationship:
• The relationship is intentional – the mentor and mentee agree to the relationship
• The parties approach each other as professionals
• The parties have mutual respect for each other
• The parties are able to give and take feedback
• The parties communicate openly and honestly
• The relationship is founded on mutual trust and a guarantee of confidentiality
Though all of the characteristics listed above are important, the requirements for open, honest communication, mutual trust, and guaranteed confidentiality are fundamental and without all of these, a mentoring relationship will be of no value. Open communication is important in many types of relationships, but it is particularly important in a mentoring relationship because sharing private, personal information is so crucial. Trust and commitment to guaranteeing confidentiality are also essential because without them, people will not risk opening up.