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Mentoring Best Practices: Create an Action Plan

Although open to all, this blog post is dedicated to those mentoring partnerships who are part of the GovLoop Mentors Program!

By now, most of you have completed your first meeting with your mentor/mentee. As Kathy Wentworth Drahosz outlined in her blog on the first meeting, you have broken the ice, and have set your goals and expectations for the remainder of your partnership.

But now what?

Now that you have established a mentoring agreement along with some clear goals, what are you going to do with your mentor/mentee to achieve them? Our friends at The Mentoring Connection have shared some best practices on how to achieve your goals. They outlined 5 steps:

Step 1 – Review Your Top 3 Mentoring Goals

  • List your mentoring goals in order of priority.

Step 2 – Create a List of Learning Activities
The most successful plans are those that have a range of learning activities that encourage:

  • Learning by doing (ex., special project, writing a memo, etc.)
  • Learning from others (ex., shadowing, situational mentoring, etc.)
  • Learning from challenging experiences or “stretch assignments” (ex., project outside of department, leadership role, etc.)

Step 3 – Create a Timeline

  • Determine how many hours, days or weeks it will take to complete each activity.

Step 4 – Get it in Writing

  • Tip: Mentees can create the plan within the Mentoring Connection website and share it with their mentors – similar to the Mentoring Agreement.
  • Continue to update and fine tune your activities, timelines and schedules as needed.

Step 5 – Begin Your Mentoring Journey

  • Always keep in mind that the actual journey is an important part of the mentoring process and many times can be the most rewarding!

2012 Partnerships: How are you planning to achieve your goals?

2011 Partnerships: What kinds of activities did you do with your mentor/mentee? Which were successful, and which weren’t?

Everyone Else: What has kept you on track in your past mentoring relationships?

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