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Dear Career Coach

My company has introduced a new policy which is to encourage us to find mentors. To be honest, I'm not sure how to go about it and what good it will really do me. I would appreciate your advice.


Emmet, London

A mentor, quite simply, is a trusted counselor or teacher who can advise someone and serve as an example. Having a mentor in your workplace will give you the opportunity to get exposure to and learn from someone who has experience of how your organisation works and what it takes to become successful.

In companies, mentors provide their expertise to less experienced employees and can be a valuable source of help in advancing your career and building your networks. Of course, this means that it is critical to choose your mentor wisely in order to get the best out of the relationship.

If you have a question for our Career Coach, e-mail us at   careers@ReConnectAfrica.com


There are a few tips I would suggest you bear in mind for finding and working with a mentor:

  • Try to choose someone who is different from you and who has some skills or qualities that you can model yourself on. Someone of a different gender and age can also help you see/address issues from other perspectives.
  • Do your research and ask around about your intended mentor – what is their reputation in the company? Have they mentored others? If so, what were they like? What sort of feedback did previous mentees give?
  • Set goals for the relationship with your mentor. You need to think about the areas where you might need help or support so that you are working to the same agenda. Be open to receiving constructive criticism and see it as a chance to help you get feedback that no-one else might be prepared to offer.
  • Keep up your end of the bargain. You have to be ready to trust your mentor and commit to whatever is agreed between you in terms of actions and deadlines. You also have to be trustworthy about any sensitive information your mentor may share with you.

All the best!

Need some help to solve your career dilemma? Whether you are a recent graduate or a seasoned professional, our experienced careers coaches can work with you – on an individual or group basis – to help you get back on track with your career.

From online CV checking to face-to-face coaching, presentation skills training to making the right impact at interview, our careers services will help you reach your goals.

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