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Mentoring Myths

We have all heard of mentoring, but is a mentor a parent, a husband, a friend or colleague, a brother, a sister, an aunt or a cousin? Could a mentor be all of these?

In this article, we will cover some myths about mentoring.

Let’s first define mentoring; according to Cambridge university mentoring is:

“The act or process of helping and giving advice to a younger or less experienced person, especially in a job or at school”.

As Mentoring plays a key role in any person's growth and development it is important to understand the myths around it. Here below some common myths about mentoring.

  1. Mentoring is a one way street : it is important that every mentor and mentee understand that without the commitment of both sides, the mentoring won’t be a success. Take it as a two way street relationship.

  2. A mentoring relationship can only be face to face : ALWIS is the best example of how e-mentoring is just as effective as conventional mentoring. Since 2020 ALWIS team has committed to mentor more that 50 Algerian girls. Our mentors are located all over the world, Japan, Europe, Australia, Malaysia, USA, Canada.They still have one thing in common, their commitment and goodwill to help the Algerian youth. The move to the virtual is also a positive option and is more efficient in some cases.

  3. Mentoring is a time consuming process : If you start thinking that every investment in yourself takes time, you will not be that successful person! Have you heard of Pareto's 80/20 law? Try to put 80% of your effort into each task and expect the other 20% to be the results of your hard work. Mentoring does not take time, it is a personal investment. Take it this way

  4. The Needs of mentees are the same : Many mentoring relationships have failed because the mentee's needs were not well grasped from the start. Every mentor has a responsibility to understand the mentee's needs before starting any action! Strategizing and discussing on an ongoing basis can help change the methodology. It also makes me mention another point that is very important. COMMUNICATION! The mentor must be an effective conversationalist while the mentee must be an effective listener!

  5. The mentor must be older : Your mentor may be younger than you! Does age determine expertise? Of course not! Age is just a number! I think there are many other ideas behind it. Many people think they know a lot because they are older. This is totally wrong! With all the technological advances in our world, even 10 year old kids are getting to know a lot more. The only thing that affects your expertise is your level of exposure to information, not your age!

  6. You need only one mentor at a time : You can still have 100 mentors at a time if you feel the need and each mentor is working on the growth of a specific skill of yours.

In conclusion, I would like to highlight a very important point:

You are the master of your destiny, nobody else! But asking for help to develop yourself is not bad, it is your responsibility to ask the right person to help you!

_ By Nina Challah

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