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Resources for Mentors

How to Use this Page

Click a topic heading below to expand it and review the available resources, including videos, podcasts, and downloadable PDFs.

Note that the topics are organized based on the mentoring relationship lifecycle.

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Stop by the ASN Career Advancement Community to share:

  • Specific questions about the mentoring resources on this page.
  • Mentoring-related questions and experiences with your peers.

Mentoring Presentations, Case Studies, Activities, and Resources

Click a heading to view the subtopics:

1. Communicating Effectively During All Phases

Effective communication is the foundation of all successful mentoring relationships. This section explores what it means to be an effective communicator and covers such topics as building trust, active listening, giving and receiving constructive feedback, interacting with mentees who are different from you, and communication styles.

Best Practices for Interpersonal Communication

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Description

This presentation explores communication best practices that you can apply as a mentor or mentee. It includes specific techniques for verbal and non-verbal communication that you'll find can improve all relationships.
Approximate duration: 06:25.

Providing Constructive Feedback

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Description

This case study discusses ways that you can provide constructive feedback while maintaining trust and openness in your mentoring relationship.
Approximate duration: 05:45.

Communicating effectively across diverse dimensions

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Description

This case study explores issues related to mentoring those different from you in terms of gender, race, religion, or other areas. Find out how you can foster a productive relationship with mentees from diverse backgrounds.
Approximate duration: 05:45.

Identifying different communication styles

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Description

This downloadable PDF activity gives you a tool to assess your own communication style. You can uncover your tendencies, such as traits you show under stress, to better understand how to communicate effectively with others.

Engaging in active listening

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Description

Active listening is a critical skill that can help create shared expectations and foster meaningful communication throughout the mentoring relationship. This case study explores what can happen when active listening is missing from the conversation.
Approximate duration: 05:15.

Using multiple strategies to improve communication

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Description

This downloadable PDF activity provides a structured role-play opportunity to assess how you communicate with others and identify areas of possible improvement.

2. Selecting a Mentee

The drivers that lead you to mentor others are critical to your long-term success in that role. At that same time, choosing an appropriate mentee and assessing your personal fit are also essential to a long and productive relationship.

Mentor Competency Areas

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Description

This downloadable PDF provides a useful exploration of the competency areas expected from you as a mentor. It illustrates each specific competency with one or more examples to help you embody and apply them.

Getting started: What you should know about being a mentor

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Description

If you're new to mentoring, the responsibility might seem a little overwhelming. This presentation explores the common expectations for mentors and details how typical mentoring relationships develop over time.
Approximate duration: 04:55.

Supporting Resources

Common Expectations for Mentors — This downloadable PDF provides another perspective on the functional expectations for mentors. Review this list to help ensure you embody the best a mentor can be. Download Common Expectations for Mentors

Early Mentoring Conversations — This downloadable PDF provides some general strategies you can use during early conversions between mentors and mentees. Use the suggested questions as a starting point to ensure you each get what you expect from the relationship. Download Early Mentoring Conversations

Third-Party Mentoring Links — This downloadable PDF contains additional third-party links that may go beyond — or provide a different perspective than — those provided here by ASN to support you in your mentoring career. Download Third-Party Mentoring Links

Assessing if there's a good fit with your mentee

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Description

This presentation will help you assess whether a prospective mentee might be a good fit for you and how well any relationships with current mentees are working out.
Approximate duration: 02:55.

Supporting Resources

Assessing the Fit Checklist — This downloadable PDF provides a brief checklist of questions to verify that you've found a good match with your mentee. Consider sharing the list with your mentee to confirm that you are equally committed to the relationship. Download Assessing the Fit Checklist

3. Aligning Expectations

An effective mentor-mentee relationship is built upon a shared understanding of your and the mentee's expectations. As a mentor, it is incumbent upon you to have in-depth conversations with your mentee early in the relationship to identify the goals and career aspirations of the mentee and ensure that you are providing timely and meaningful support.

Establishing mutually beneficial expectations for the mentoring relationship

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Description

This case study explores the expectations that you and your mentee bring to the relationship. It also discusses how to realign expectations when they get out of synch. Approximate duration: 05:15.

Aligning and communicating mentee and mentor expectations

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Description

This downloadable PDF informational guide provides basic guidance for a mentor-mentee agreement. Such an agreement should be the foundation of your relationship. You can add, remove, or edit items to fit your situation.

How personal and professional differences may influence expectations

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Description

This case study examines the importance of you and your mentee having a shared understanding of the mentee's career goals and professional interests throughout the mentoring relationship. Approximate duration: 06:00.

4. Cultivating the Mentoring Relationship

Navigating a mentoring relationship can be at once challenging and extremely rewarding. Diverse perspectives, varied personal backgrounds, and mentees' intellectual and professional growth during the relationship will require that you reevaluate their needs periodically to ensure you're providing meaningful support. This section examines several aspects of the evolving mentoring relationship and how you can best respond to these changes, opportunities, and challenges.

4.1 Managing Mentoring Challenges
Identifying and managing common mentoring challenges

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Description

This presentation explores some of the common challenges in the mentor-mentee relationship and strategies for you to address them. It also gives each participant insight into the relationship from the other's perspective.

4.2 Addressing Equity and Inclusion
Managing Equity, Inclusion, and Diversity in the Relationship

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Description

This presentation provides several important tips to help you recognize preconceptions you may have about your mentees, appreciate their diverse backgrounds, and address any differences openly.

Recognizing and Managing Unconscious Assumptions

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Description

This downloadable PDF provides a tool for you to examine any unconscious assumptions you might make about people based on their professional titles.

Identifying Hidden Biases

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Description

This link to the organization Teaching Tolerance explores the concept of bias. It also provides several fascinating online tools that you can use to test yourself for hidden biases.

Fostering inclusion

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Description

This case study provides guidance for creating a safe and welcoming environment when mentoring those who are different from you. It includes appropriate strategies for personal connections in a professional setting.

4.3 Assessing Understanding
Assessing the mentee's understanding of core concepts and processes
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Description

Presentation — Assessing whether your mentees understand the content and processes related to their discipline can be challenging. This presentation provides you with some best practices to assess your mentees' skills and knowledge and address any shortcomings you identify.

Case study — Your mentees' fundamental understanding of content and processes related to their discipline is critical to their long-term success in nephrology. In this case study you'll examine what can happen if you make assumptions about your mentees' skills and knowledge. You'll also explore some ways to assess what mentees know early in the relationship.

Identifying lack of understanding, including expert-novice differences

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Description

As an expert, your deep knowledge of nephrology helps you organize and draw on information to solve problems. Your mentees have far less knowledge, and it can affect their learning. This presentation examines differences between novice and expert knowledge and provides useful tips about how to transfer knowledge to your mentees effectively.

Exploring strategies to enhance mentee understanding

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Description

Presentation — You'll review specific strategies you can employ to bring a mentee up to speed in areas you've deemed knowledge or skills are deficient.

Case study — You'll explore issues that can arise when mentoring someone outside your specialty area. It provides specific strategies for supporting mentees working in areas with which you are less familiar.

4.4 Fostering Independence
Examining independence and how it changes during the relationship

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Description

Mentors and mentees may define independence differently, and their view of independence often changes as a mentee's professional and intellectual abilities evolve over time. This presentation explores the phases of independence that often occur throughout the mentoring relationship.

Creating confidence, trust, and independence in the relationship

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Description

This case study explores the phase of the mentor-mentee relationship when the mentee seeks additional independence. It provides techniques you can employ when the mentee feels they are ready to move on, but may not be.

Balancing competing demands, needs, and interests

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Description

This case study examines what can happen when a mentor provides inequitable professional opportunities to mentees. You'll also explore ways to avoid the appearance of favoritism.

5. Concluding the Mentee Relationship

When it's time to let go of a relationship with your mentee — either because it has naturally run its course or for other reasons — there are some specific attitudes you can adopt and actions you can take to make the transition easier.

Concluding the mentee relationship

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Description

This presentation explores best practices for concluding your mentor-mentee relationship, as well as advice on taking the relationship to a different level, if appropriate.