The next few months are critical to your mentee's ongoing success in their program or place of work. Now is the time to plan for the immediate future and the upcoming summer months. To start the conversation, send your mentee a quick text asking them about one personal goal and one program/job related goal that they would like to complete in the next three months. Be sure to include your own personal and professional goals in the text. This is a great way to jumpstart the conversation before getting into specifics. It also gives your mentee a glimpse into what is important to you at your place of work and in your personal life.
For mentees who have completed job training and are currently working, check and see what they want to accomplish. What can they do to improve their current job performance? Do they hope to be promoted or considered for a different job with more responsibility and better compensation? Knowing the next steps that are needed to accomplish these goals will be helpful for creating a plan and formal goal-setting.
If your mentee is in a gap year program, the end of the program is only a few short months away. What tasks does your mentee need to complete to fulfill their program requirements? If there is an educational award attached to their program, what paperwork needs to be completed? Is your mentee interested in doing a second year in their gap year program? If so, what is the application process and timeline?
For mentees in a credentialing or certificate program, what program requirements need to be met for them to continue in their program? Are there specific opportunities that they can pursue in the upcoming summer months? If your mentee is in a two-year program what can they do now to begin preparing for year two?
Regardless of pathway, the S.M.A.R. T. goal structure is a great one to suggest to your mentee. Your mentee was first introduced to this concept in high school and it is used in many different professions. The best part is that the structure lends itself to task completion which helps your mentee build a sense of accomplishment as they work toward a larger goal.
Prompts for Communication:
While S.M.A.R.T goals provide excellent goal-setting structure, avoid beginning the conversation with them. Otherwise, the interaction may seem a bit transactional. Start with a personal check-in instead. Here are some questions that you might ask your mentee, and give personal examples from your life as well. Another option is asking your mentee to take the lead on the conversation and ask you questions about how things are going in your life
- How is everything going? How is your family?
- What things at home or in your program,family or job have changed since we last spoke? What areas do you need support with? How can I help?
- What is something that you are doing outside of work and home that you are enjoying?
Here are some work/program-related questions that you might ask:
- How is your program/job going? What areas are you doing well in? In what areas do you need support?
- How are you connecting with other people in your program/on the job?
- Does your program/job still feel like a good fit?
- What are some things that you are learning? How are you growing from this experience?
Here are some ways to begin the conversation around S.M.A.R.T goals:
- Model a S.M.A.R.T. goal for your mentee based upon something you want to accomplish professionally or personally over the next 3 months.
- Help your mentee set their S.M.A.R.T. goals by providing them with additional context. Making goals for your professional and personal life is important to ensure that you are doing things you want and progressing in life. Are there any goals you want to set for yourself related to:
- Health & Wellness
- Financial Security
- Leisure or Fun
- Artistic & Creative Endeavors
- Public Service/ Giving Back
- Attitude/ Mindset
- SMART GOALS sheet: https://imentor.box.com/s/t072vibraw319w53q9uyo4n1m1inei31