At the moment I am not involved in professional mentoring at all, my final CILIP mentee chartered recently and I’m not intending to take on any more candidates until I resolve whether to remain in CILIP membership or not.
I mentioned last year that I’ve never had a formal librarianship mentor and this remains the case. I read someone else’s (sorry I didn’t note down who) post on Thing 11 recently suggesting that those of us further into our careers don’t really need a mentor and pondering on this I am happy to carry on without a mentor but with the excellent support given by the Scottish Law Librarians Group.
If I were to change careers (I’m not planning to) I would definitely seek out a mentor. My lovely friends are kind enough to act as mentors when I hit obstacles in my personal life so maybe I’m not too old for a mentor after all.
Here’s what I had to say about mentoring in 2011 –
This shall be a short post, I am offline for a couple of months whilst I move house so writing this on Dad’s terrible old PC and equally terrible internet connection!
I have never had a formal mentor, this is probably an error on my part as I spent the early part of my professional career effectively working on my own. I am pretty sure that a mentor could have been hugely beneficial. Looking back there were definitely times when I needed extra support or someone other than my boss to bounce ideas off.
What I do have though is a very good informal support network of peers. Although none of them is more experienced than me in number of years in the profession one has packed so much more into her career that she has at times been able to act as a mentor when I have needed her to. I am very grateful to them all for their support.
As I am registered as a CILIP Chartership mentor, I was interested to see the qualities that a good mentor should have listed. Definitely some things I need to work on as I don’t feel that all my mentor/mentee relationships have worked out as well as they could have. I am finding working with my current mentee particularly challenging but I am pretty sure that much of the fault lies with me. Perhaps I need to be brave and ask her for some honest feedback ….