A One Year Sample Outline of a Mentoring Relationship

10 Nov

The following table outlines a mentoring relationship over the course of 12 months.

Forming the Mentoring Relationship

An Informal Meeting to Explore the Possibility of Mentoring
To explore the possibility of a mentoring relationship, there is often an informal meeting with no commitments on either side to discuss the relationship, expectations and how it might work.  This is a chance to test the chemistry and see if both mentor and mentoree can see the relationship working.

Sharing Life Stories
The mentoring relationship is established built on the trust created through the sharing of life stories. The mentoree’s story provides for deeper understanding of the individual to be mentored. It gives an indication of the key issues in the mentoree’s life. The level of vulnerability gives an indication of the desire of the mentoree for growth, accountability and development. The mentor’s story creates the credibility to invest in the life of the mentoree and often establishes points of connection.

Setting Clear Objectives for Growth
A clarifying feature of a mentoring relationship as distinct from Spiritual direction and basic discipleship is the use of clear objectives.  The objectives are developed from the mentoree’s issues, desires, roles and goals. These are documented and become the basis of mentoring.  The cover ‘whole of life’ issues but are geared toward leadership development. 

Some mentors like to work with a couple of simple inventories to get an understanding of their mentoree’s goals, personality, spiritual gifts, life experience, stress factors etc.

A Mentoring Covenant
The covenant documents the commitment and expectations of mentoring by each party including time, availability, confidentiality and accountability. It sets up how the mentoring relationship will be expressed in action.

7 Key Dynamics of Mentoring

Pastoral Support
The mentor becomes a significant support person and nurtures the mentoree through the stages of life and ministry development. At times of crisis the mentor might increase the amount of support in the relationship.  There is usually some time given at the outset of each mentoring session for a ‘how are you going’ catch up. 

Accountability
The mentor is prepared to hold the mentoree to account for commitments voluntarily made by the mentoree for their own growth and development.

Development
Mentor and mentoree journey together working on achieving the growth objectives documented by the mentoree. These include specific action steps and growth in knowledge, skills and commitments made to achieve each of the overall objectives. The mentor is committed to the development of the mentoree in his / her life roles.

Prayer
The mentor prays for the mentoree.  Prayer is a significant aspect of mentoring and often leads to insight and reflection on the needs and growth of the mentoree. 

Networking
The mentor networks the mentoree into new relationships and provides opportunities for her / his growth through connecting them to others, to events and areas they might not be otherwise exposed to. 

Resourcing
The mentor collects, develops and prepares material for the mentoree. The mentor provides the mentoree with resources that encourage growth and development.

Reflective Practice
The mentor sets exercises for the mentoree’s reflection aimed at empowering growth. 

Evaluation – Conclusion or Re-Covenanting

Reflection and Evaluation
There is a period of time in which both mentor and mentoree evaluate the relationship based on the objectives and the covenant.  Both together discern whether the relationships will be re-covenanted or whether the time is right for it to conclude and the mentoree move on to another mentor or another supportive and developmental process. 

Completion Celebration
If the relationship is to close, a careful symbolic process of giving thanks for the relationship is held.

1 Year Model (PDF)

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