Sunday, April 2, 2017

Your Mentoring Playlist

Music is an important part of our everyday lives.  It can evoke strong emotions, motivate, and help set the mood of the environment.  Many students have playlists for different activities; to study, exercise, or to pump up for an athletic event.  I present you with my mentoring playlist; a list of song titles that can help direct how you interact with your mentor!

Million Reasons, Lady Gaga; Stronger - Kelly Clarkson
Mentoring has loads of benefits; for example, it can help you learn more about your desired career area while providing you with practical information you can use to build related experience.  In addition, the connections you make with your mentor may lead to contacts which may generate your first internship or job. Identifying and communicating with a mentor can help you sharpen your communication skills, your employment materials, and overall make you better equipped to pursue opportunities as the strongest candidate.

Hello, Adele; Call on Me, Starley
Make regular contact with your mentor.  Many students are great at the initial introduction with others, but fail at maintaining the relationship.  Your mentor needs to know how you are doing!  Did you take their advice?  How did it go?  Are you looking for work now?  What has been your progress?  Regular communication keeps you fresh in the mind of your mentor and allows them to help you in meeting your personal and professional goals. Mentoring is about establishing personal relationships.  Get to know your mentor and let them get to know you.

I Got You, Bebe Rexha; Stand by You, Rachel Platten
Asking for help is part of the mentoring process and in many cases, your mentor WANTS to help you! However, you have to be specific in how your mentor can support you; mentors are not mind readers.  It also helps to ensure you are asking for appropriate requests based upon your relationship. It’s not necessarily appropriate to ask a mentor you just met for access to their professional contacts.  Instead of asking directly about jobs, perhaps ask where you should be looking, what sites would be recommended, or ask your mentor if they would be willing to review your employment materials and provide a critique.

Treat you Better, Shawn Mendes; In Case You Didn’t Know, Brett Young
Mentoring is a two-way street, as well as a mutually beneficial relationship.  You might wonder how you could help someone in a professional position as a college student, but you have to think outside the box.  Providing information on your generation can be helpful to your mentor, whether they market products or supervise other employees.  If your mentor has a family with children or grandchildren, do you have connections that could be useful to them (ie; tutoring, babysitting, athletic lessons, etc.)  Send your mentor an article about their industry, tag them in a post on LinkedIn, and let them know that you are thinking about them too.  The more you can add value to the mentoring relationship, the more valuable you become to your mentor.

Can’t Stop the Feeling, Justin Timberlake

Who can listen to this song without feeling great??  And after you have landed a great career opportunity, you will feel like singing and dancing!

Written by:  Stacie Hays, Morningside College
Career Counselor, Career Services 

Edited by:  Bobbi Sullivan, Simpson College 
Director, Career Development and Civic Engagement

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