GETTING SKILLS EXERCISE
A mentoring relationship becomes truly powerful when you intentionally engage experiences that stretch your professional “muscles.” Getting out of your comfort zone and engaging in learning exercises that actually challenge you, will help you grow in new directions. The following examples are often components of formal mentoring programs:
—Activities in which both success and failure are possible and the outcome is obvious to others.
—Opportunities that require assertive “take charge” leadership.
—Assignments that involve working with new people, a lot of people, or both.
—Projects that require influencing people, activities, or factors over which you have no direct authority.
—Work that can be closely watched by people whose opinions count.
—Tasks that are intellectually challenging and involve a lot of variety.
You can ask your mentor for such skills exercises, and/or you can invite your mentees to “muscle up!” by developing new skills from learning challenges like these. Similar skills exercises can become part of your life-long-learning; a sort of personal Olympics in which you “push the envelope” of your previous abilities!