So last spring I invited all you Millennials to share your perspective on mentoring, the response was fantastic! Twenty-five of you completed the survey, sharing your insights about mentoring your more senior colleagues in the workplace.
In addition to publishing the results in a paper for the University of New Mexico’s Mentoring Institute, I wanted to share the results directly with you.
So here it goes:
Question 1: What values, attitudes, skills, or knowledge could you share with an older or more seasoned colleague as their mentor?
The overwhelming response was your new and different perspectives on life and business. Times have changed and you want to share your new worldview.
The specific attitudes you identified most were adaptability and flexibility. The specific skills and knowledge you most identified were:
- Problem solving
- Intergenerational understanding
- Current trends
- Digital and social media,
- The use of technology to problem solve, collaborate, and create new work flow processes.
And I would have to say that this has been consistent with my experience and why I get so excited to work with Millennials!
Question 2: Have you mentored a more senior colleague before?
Question 3: If yes, what was the focus of your mentoring?
As mentors, you offered a variety of attitudes, skills, and knowledge. Here they are:
Attitudes: openness, patience, cultural awareness, fresh perspective, youth-led perspective, confidence
Skills: listening, communication, intercultural communication, conflict resolution, overcoming adversity, multi-tasking, group facilitation, non-formal learning techniques for facilitation, integrate fun into facilitation and learning, public speaking, networking
Knowledge: IT workflows, Leadership, Quality Management, Technology, New Computer Programs, Psychology, Life Coaching, sewing
Question 4: If no, why not?
Out of those of you who have not mentored a more senior colleagues, 100% of you said it was because you did not have the opportunity. And only 2% of you said it was because you were not confident that you had something to offer.
So what does this all mean?
It means you all are potentially great mentors for colleagues of any age, and that you have much to offer your senior colleagues if given the opportunity to mentor them.
I say, pursue as many opportunities as possible to mentor others. Like the quote above says, “If opportunity doesn’t know, build a door!” and create your own opportunities.Whether formally or informally, face to face or virtually, mentoring isn’t just good for those you mentor, it’s also good for you.
Read this recent blog post for the 5 Reasons Why Mentoring is Good for You!
Proudly, I will also present these results at UNM’s Mentoring Institute Conference in October, be sure to catch the live feed. I’ll send out a reminder early next month. And the full report will be available in the Free Stuff section by November.
I have also published papers and presented on Millennials and Mentoring in 2013 and 2012. You can watch my 2013 presentation, and read both of the papers Mentoring GenY’s and The Evolution of Online Mentoring in my Free Stuff section here!
Thanks to all of you who participated!