There is a range of different styles to suit each individual mentor-mentee pairing. Styles range from the traditional to the long-distance, meeting the needs of every situation.
Keep reading to learn more about some of the most common types of mentoring and determine which could be the best method for you and your mentor/mentee.
1. Traditional one-on-one
Traditional mentoring is the most common form. It consists of a one-on-one structure where both mentor and mentee meet and communicate regularly at a regularity determined by both parties (e.g. Wednesdays, fortnightly).
2. Distance Mentoring
Distance mentoring is often utilised when the mentor and mentee are in different locations. It is not a particularly common method of mentoring, as communication is such an important part of the mentoring process and therefore, more convenient alternatives are sought out.
3. Group Mentoring
Group mentoring consists of one or two mentors working with a number of mentees, usually within an organisation that matches employees. This method is typically utilised when there is a shared interest e.g. mentors are all working towards the same goal.
4. Mentoring Circle
A Mentoring Circle is a ‘mentoring support network’ for friends and colleagues. Within these groups, members support and encourage each other’s professional and personal growth, from all levels.
5. Minute Mentoring
Minute mentoring is based on the concept of speed-dating in that it provides the opportunity for people to meet one-on-one at an event, for a few minutes at a time, and in this time, mentors are able to convey their knowledge and wisdom in a condensed format.
This form of mentoring is fast-paced, time-efficient and is a great networking opportunity for both mentors and mentees.
6. Invisible Mentoring
Invisible mentoring is done from afar. Invisible mentors are ones who are observed by mentees and may not even be aware that they are mentoring. Gonzaga University describes the Invisible mentor as “personify[ing] a potential future to the protégé or provide an example of how to achieve various career milestones.”
7. Reverse Mentoring
Reverse mentoring works in the opposite way, in that more senior members of staff are paired with newer/younger employees. In doing this, a cross of generations helps to bridge the gap in fields such as technology and social media where the senior staff get to learn and gain new perspectives on advancements that they may not understand and junior staff get the opportunity to spend time with the senior staff and get experienced advice.