10 Simple Exercises for Mentorees

  1. Ask them to observe other leaders in action. Ask your mentoree to watch not only for content but also for process – how does the leader do they do what they do? What is the impact on others? What works and what doesn’t?
  2. Facilitate your mentoree learning and reflecting. When they attend a conference, read a book, participate in a webinar or hear a podcast; ask them to reflect on the lessons learned. Discuss these in the next session. Evaluate the useful helpful ideas and action them.
  3. When your mentoree raises a question or an issue, take a step back, imagine this has been raised by a third party and work on the issue together, discussing ideas and options. Deliberately shift gears from teaching to collaborating on a response to the issue.
  4. Invite your mentoree to journal and bring several passages along for reflection together.
  5. Ask your mentoree to prepare and present their work on a project succinctly in a 3-minute window. Then be prepared to answer key questions you raise following the presentation.
  6. Ask your mentoree to put together a brainstorm, mind-map, or concept map on one the issues you are working on. Include existing knowledge, key questions, values, unresolved issues, causes, implications, bright ideas, hopes, dreams etc…. Discuss this at the next session.
  7. Use a common leadership, personality or skill assessment survey, tool or questionnaire. Ask your mentoree to complete this and they ask for 3-10 others around your mentoree to complete the same instrument and give the feedback to the mentoree. Ask them to reflect on what they learn from this feedback.
  8. Ask you mentoree to research and prepare a dot point position paper on an issue you are working on together.
  9. Work with your mentoree to break down a significant goal into a step by step plan for implementation. Put it into action and evaluate every session, keeping the plan live and adjusting as you learn how it works in reality.
  10. Do something together, attend a seminar together, read a book together, listen to the same podcast etc. Spend time discussing your different ‘takes’ on what you learn and what you get out of something.

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