Many people feel that being a mentor requires special skills, but mentors are simply people who have the qualities of good role models.
They maintain eye contact and give mentees their full attention.
Mentors are there to help their mentees find life direction, never to push them.
They give insights about keeping on task and setting goals and priorities.
Mentors educate about life and their own careers.
Mentors use their personal experience to help their mentees avoid mistakes and learn from good decisions.
Mentors are available as a resource and a sounding board.
When necessary, mentors point out areas that need improvement, always focusing on the mentee's behavior, never his/her character.
No matter how painful the mentee's experience, mentors continue to encourage them to learn and improve.
Mentors give specific advice on what was done well or could be corrected, what was achieved and the benefits of various actions.
Mentors care about their mentees' progress in school and career planning, as well as their personal development.
Mentors not only are successful themselves, but they also foster success in others.
Mentors are usually well respected in their organizations and in the community.
Courtesy of The Connecticut Mentoring Partnership and the Business and Legal Reports, Inc. - Best Practices in HR, Issue 653, September 30, 1999.