5 Lessons I learnt as a Mentee

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If I have seen further than others, it is by standing upon the shoulders of giants.” That was Isaac Newton’s assertion about the beauty of mentee and mentor’s relationship. I have written about the tips about mentoring here. One of the best gifts we could ever have in life is people. It has been my major blessing to have mentors who showed me the path through life. Among the many lessons I have learnt, here are five critical ones that could make the relationship enjoyable.

  1. A mentee must be willing to learn by asking questions, engaging in healthy debates and accepting counsel or open to disagree respectfully. As people age, they tend to speak less because they have seen things in life that words now matter to them. It takes a lot of patience and curiosity to learn from them at this stage. Sometimes, a scar is all they will show you and nothing more. It behooves on you to probe further because there are lessons to learn from that scar.
  2. A mentee should accord honour to his mentor. This is very important as you are dealing with a person of value. There is the tendency to disrespect them as you get closer, do all you can to avoid that. Learn to respect his views, respect his privacy and little secrets shared with you. Place a lid on your lips to watch your words that they are not rude. Send token gifts while showing genuine honour.
  3. Growth is not a choice, it is a must. Once you subscribe to a mentoring process, you are ready to grow. Failure to exhibit any significant improvement is nothing but a discouragement to your mentor and perhaps a fault in the process which should be reexamined. Your growth gladdens your mentor and relieves him of work as time progresses.
  4. Faithfulness is required which includes loyalty, honesty, and truthfulness. You cannot afford to be double faced while dealing with a person of integrity. If your mentor knows you are insincere, they will cut off the relationship. A mentor is not perfect but the sincerity a relationship requires must be present. Accept the fact that he is well intentioned and deal with him with absolute sincerity.
  5. Show gratitude and avoid premature solicitation. A guy once requested that I mentor him, I oblige. Every call or SMS I got from him afterwards was a request for money. The day I rebuked him, he cut off the relationship. Premature solicitation has ruined many relationships. Accepting to mentor you already come at a huge cost to your mentor more than you can afford. Never take the relationship for granted. Understand when your mentor is too busy to attend to you. Don’t join others to vilify him. You can read about tips for mentoring.

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6 thoughts on “5 Lessons I learnt as a Mentee”

  1. Pingback: What to know about mentoring - Sola John

  2. One of the finest pieces on mentorship. To add to that, show your gratitude to your mentor by buying a gift from time to time. This is not because the mentor needs it, the mentee needs it

  3. Deborah Nwaohiri

    Thank you for this piece. It is quite easy to get carried away when you begin to get really close to your mentor and become privy to information that others don’t have.

  4. Joseph Oladimeji

    Some mentees also sometimes begin to dishonour their mentors later in life simply because they think they are also now experienced.
    However, we need to understand that finishing life well and strong should be our ultimate goal.
    The fact that you and your mentor are now elders does not give you the excuse to retrieve previously extended honour.

    I am sure we have seen examples of old people giving honour to some older persons before. This happens because they have identified value and they also understand that blessings/mantles/precious insights drop via honouring such identified values.

    May the Lord help us not to miss the blessings of the generation of mentors who have already ran their race and in some cases, may be beginning to transcend a phase of visible generational impact.

  5. Yes Sir.
    One of my mentor usually say this “the mentee might do greater things than his mentor but that those not make him lose respect for him” Example is Jesus and His disciples.

  6. This is a timely piece for young ones like us. I completely concur Sir.
    I think the part of the mentee asking questions is very vital. Especially learning to ask the right questions and recognizing the right time to do so.

    Thank you so much Sir for this lovely piece.

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