Helpful Hints for Mentors

What sorts of things should I encourage a protegée to do?

It will always help to start from the basics:

  • Get them to reflect on their existing skills and experience with appropriateness and validity being the key
  • Once they have constructed their skills/experience, you will be more able to advise and suggest a course of action for them
  • Help them to think about their objectives for the future
  • Encourage them to rationalize their goals, personal value system and motivational drivers
  • Finally, advise your protégée to develop an action plan and present this to you

How much time should I be spending on my protégée(s)?
Unless you are happy to do so, we would not expect you to commit to more than 1-2 hours per month. This will comfortably cover a number of questions by 1 or 2 protégées via email or even the occasional personal meeting or phone call if you are happy with this.

How many protégées should I be helping?
You should probably aim to have not more than 2 or 3 protégées at any one time.

If I am receiving multiple contacts, what can I do?
We would prefer you to spend time on a small number of protégées rather than try to feel obliged to help everyone! When you have reached your personal comfort zone, contact us and we will 'hide' your details from potential protégées until you are ready to receive more.

How can I monitor whether my help is useful or not?
In the first instance you should ask the question directly of your protégée. We will also be ensuring that an annual monitoring system is established to ensure that help or advice is being correctly directed.

Term of the mentoring relationship
We recommend a term of at least 9 months to a year. It takes a few months to establish the mentoring relationship, which is of optimal benefit once the mutual trust factor is achieved and both parties become comfortable with one another. If you would like a shorter term of 6 to 9 months, please indicate this on your questionnaire so we can be sure to accommodate.

What if I feel I could also use a mentor?
Then you are welcome to become a protégée too! The program is there for you to benefit as well as helping others.

Who do I contact for help?
Mentoring Committee
Women’s Law Association of Ontario