About Mentoring

Mentoring of junior faculty at Stanford is integral to scientific and clinical success.

Mentoring junior colleagues into the complex roles of faculty in academic medicine is not only a good cultural practice, but is required by university policy.

Effective faculty mentoring relationships have three prerequisites:

  1. clear articulation of what each person expects from the relationship at the onset,  
  2. deliberate intention to mentor and openness to receive feedback and advice, and
  3. non-competitiveness between the mentor and mentees.

What is a Mentor?

Mentors are not counselors, supervisors, coaches, teachers or therapists. Mentors:

  • Role model by demonstrating the behaviors, attitudes, values and ethics that lead to success at Stanford.
  • Challenge mentees and encourage new ways of thinking, research directions, and push mentee to stretch his/her capability.
  • Sponsor by opening doors that would otherwise be closed.
  • Give exposure and visibility by facilitating professional exposure and access to talks, and similar opportunities.
  • Protect mentee by acting as a buffer and help with damage control.
  • Accept and affirm by supporting their mentees and showing respect for their goals and interests.
  • Give feedback by reviewing their mentee’s accomplishments and advise on career progress.
  • Care by demonstrating concern for the well-being of their mentees.
  • Counsel by helping their mentee deal with difficult dilemmas (e.g., work life integration, administrative mishaps, and difficult decisions).

Quick Guides to Mentoring