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20 Tips for Mentors and Mentees


20 Tips for Mentors and Mentees is part of a presentation delivered by Onyekachi Umah at the “ASK Mentorship Hangout” and “the 29 Sabi Law Lecture Series” on 11 JULY 2020 (6:00 PM)

20 Tips for Mentors and Mentees

  1. MENTORSHIP is the transfer of wealth (experience, skill, knowledge and time) from a more experienced and willing person to a willing person in need of wealth, so that both parties may grow. A mentee must have genuine hunger for the wealth of the mentor and the mentor must be willing and available to lead and cheer his mentee for free. The relationship is long term and often informal. Mentors selflessly make other people’s dreams come true!
  2. A mentorship is a two-way traffic. Both Mentor and Mentee grow and learn in a mentorship relationship. Mentors must have open minds to pick up new ideas from mentees in order to better lead mentees through their often creative and innovative quest.4th Edition of Sabi Law Video Challenge #SabiLawVideoChallenge
  3. Mentorship is far from classroom teaching rather it is a priceless life experience. There is often standard curriculum, rather it is bespoke. There is no special training for mentors. Mentors are not coaches. Coaches are often in need of some level of showmanship rather mentors are often better observed in their ecology.
  4. Mentees must seek for people that have gone through the paths that mentees desire. You don’t need people that have read or studied about the way (mere consultants/professionals) rather people that have walked through the way, no matter how little.
  5. Mentors must not be successful but must be experienced! Most coaches of world best teams and athletes were never world champions but have the skill and experience to make champions. There are better lessons in the heart of the one that has failed severally. Go for mentors with process and not necessarily results. Success is often not a direct proof of a reliable process but reliable processes and approaches are often multiple routes to success. This is important in a world where there are many successful people without a transferable process or approach.
  6. Avoid having one mentor for all aspects of your life, if not you may become a mere copy of a fading original. Every person is a unique being that can achieve what no man has attempted in life, so why be a counterfeit? Do not copy a mentor rather aspire to understand him, learn his approach and apply your own initiative. Mentors provide a baseline for greater impact and innovations and not crowns of success.
  7. A mentor is not perfect so be ready for a shocker or mistake. You must not always agree with your mentor but learn to be courteous and courageous. Always apply your own logic and avoid being a gullible extremist. Story of Malcolm X and his mentor (Elijah Muhammad) is instructive.
  8. There is no room for competition in mentorship. A mentor like a good father, praying and working to have his son greater than him, with louder exploits. Strive to go pass your mentor and not to be your mentor. Every good mentor wants a greater mentee. The reward of a mentor is the testimonies of his mentee.
  9. Mentorship can be acknowledged or unacknowledged. It can be physical and or remote. It can be via meeting, walks, visits, books, tapes and publications.

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    Sabi Law On BeatFm
  10. Mentorship is mentee-driven. Mentors want to see enthusiasm, passion and hunger for knowledge. Mentors have information and knowledge that mentees need and it is the duty to mentees to passionately seek for such from mentors.
  11. Mentee is not a servant rather a respected and respectful person willing to learn from the experiences of another. Mentees should never be abused or taken advantage of, after all proper legal action can be taken against a mentor. Also, mentors should never be abused by mentees.
  12. Mentorship is better without any financial considerations. The moment you pay for mentorship, it becomes coaching and a lecturer-student relationship. It becomes short term and the mentor will have no long-term commitment. Go to school and coaching sessions if you want a paid coach for a specific issue, a specific time and result.
  13. Appreciate your mentors (kind words) and avoid bribing/buying them or showing off wealth. Mentors need your sincere comments and feedback, so don’t send wrong signals.
  14. Avoid disturbing a mentor’s personal space. There is time for everything and avoid losing your consciousness.
  15. Mentee must be serious with mentorship and do all assignments with genuine hunger for more. Don’t be pulled rather show eagerness and willingness at all times. Failing and failures are part of mentorship, so bury your fear and shame.
  16. Mentees must have some minimum/baseline knowledge (not necessarily experience). Mentors are not trained teachers and may not be patient for lack of basic fundamentals. So, mentees must do some homework and self-training. Hence, some mentors send out assessment tests to prospective mentees before accepting a mentorship relationship.
  17. Mentors must Consult, Counsel and Cheer their mentees. Mentors must be approachable and detailed enough to inquire and lead mentees, as well as advice, encourage and celebrate every little improvement of mentees.

    Call for Legal Awareness Articles in English or Pidgin Languages.
    Call for Legal Awareness Articles in English or Pidgin Languages.
  18. Mentees Stages in Mentorship: Preparation, Negotiations, Application and Transition. Mentorship starts with preparing to be led, negotiating to be led, being led and then transforming the relationship.
  19. How to choose a mentor: write you desired deliverables (what you want); justification (why you want what you want. Your justification must align with your purpose in life); scout, study and list leaders in your chosen area; reduce the list to 5 desired mentors in order of priority; reach out professionally (physically or remotely); wait for response (avoid being a pain) and when accepted as a mentee, commence with appreciation and an open mind.
  20. Don’t worry, you must not have a mentor to be successful but life is easier climbing on the right shoulders!


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