What is mentoring?

PHILADELPHIA—According to Chip Bell, PhD, keynote speaker at the 44th Annual American College of Health Care Administrators (ACHCA) Convocation and Exposition, mentoring is a leader or coach whose goal is to educate.

“Mentoring is not training,” Bell says. “It is helping people to learn.” Bell is a speaker and author of several best-selling business books. He has been featured on CNBC, ABC, USA Today, and Businessweek. His ACHCA presentation was entitled, “Managers as Mentors: Creating a Partnership for Learning.”

Mentoring is critical to a business to help employees cope with change and it also helps companies acquire and retain great talent. “The goal of mentoring is fostering a never-ending learning relationship. A good mentoring partnership is boundless, expansive,” he says.

There are four attributes that make mentoring work: surrendering (showing humility), accepting (listening without judgment), extending (support a learning community), and gifting. This entails giving advice without resistance. Step 1 is to acknowledge the particular problem or goal; Step 2 receives their agreement that there is a problem; Step 3 is to get permission to give advice; Step 4 is when you state your advice in first person singular; and Step 5 is for feedback on the usefulness of your advice.

Bell says mentoring must be done by “anchoring to the heart” of the person being mentored. We remember things that are meaningful to us.

Topics: Articles