1 - Complete Your Member Profile
If you haven't already, the first step is to fill out your Leader2Leader profile. Make sure your contact information is up to date, add a photo of yourself, expand on your bio and import your education and job history information from LinkedIn. Having a complete and accurate profile will help prospective mentors or mentees get to know you better before requesting a match. Profile complete? Time to move on to step 2.
2 - Enroll as a Mentor or Mentee, or Both!
Complete your mentor/mentee profile so others can search for you. Profile categories include leadership experience, areas of expertise (mentors) or interest (mentees) and mentoring relationship goals and expectations. The more information you provide, the easier it will be to make the best match. Keep in mind in order to request a mentor or mentee, you must first be enrolled in the program.
3 - Find a Mentor
Search the Leader2Leader Mentoring Directory for someone with the leadership experience and areas of expertise you're interested in. If meeting face-to-face is important to you, make sure you search based on location. Once you've found a mentor or mentors who you think could be a good match, go ahead and request a match with them!
Once you've matched with a mentor, start the partnership off on the right foot by sharing your goals and establishing your mutual expectations. What do you both wish to get out of the mentorship? Do you have a specific, focused goal (e.g. resume review, preparing for a certification exam, etc.) or are you looking for something less structured? How do you each prefer to communicate? How frequently would you like to connect? You may find it helpful to set up regular meetings or phone calls so you keep momentum.
Make sure you take advantage of the mentoring resources we've provided. The Mentee Development Worksheet can help you think through your goals and prompt you to discuss your communication plan, the Suggested Structure provides an example timeline for a six-month mentoring relationship and the Helpful Tips are just that, helpful tips for both mentees and mentors as you embark on your mentoring relationship.
Bonus - Complete the AONL Nurse Leader Competencies Assessment
The AONL Nurse Leader Competency Assessment Tool is a powerful self-development instrument. Through the assessment, you can evaluate your skills, knowledge and abilities for the nurse manager and nurse executive roles. The simple exercise of rating yourself and asking others to rate you provides tremendous insight on hidden strengths, blind spots and areas for development. Use this tool to start your mentorship off with a foundational understanding of your own skills and areas of development.