Mentoring relationships are innately goal-centered partnerships. They are indispensable to the work of mentoring. Goals focus the work of mentoring, enable mentee growth and development, and, ultimately, determine the success of the relationship. Setting SMART — specific, measurable, action-oriented, realistic and timely—learning goals is one of the most daunting challenges mentors and mentees face.
Mentees are often reluctant to identify goals that appear too ambitious to a senior leader who, they fear, might not think the mentee capable of that level of achievement. Mentors find themselves tasked with making sure that goals will produce the kinds of tangible results that warrant time and energy and move the organization and mentee forward. Be SMART about helping your mentee set SMART goals! Here are some winning strategies for facilitating a mentee-driven goal setting process.