When should a mentoring relationship end?

In a formal mentoring program, the program itself provides the time when the relationship must come to an end. However, sometimes one or the other partner feels like it's time to break up before that period of time. I have found that this is very common when a mentor is assigned or imposed, usually within the framework of one of the many competitions or university programs. You've spent time and effort finding a mentor, setting goals, meeting with your partner, and working on your personal and professional development.

You might find that you haven't made the most of your mentor's experience, for example. And just because you take a break from a mentor doesn't mean you have to take a break from mentoring. It's best for you to maintain informal contact with your mentor as you build your contacts throughout your career. Frank offered to continue mentoring Chris after he left the agency, but Chris politely deflected requests.

And for those more formal programs where there's an assigned end date, keep in mind that you and your mentor can continue an ongoing, less formal mentoring relationship if both of you are open to it and still see the value of connecting. That's why I recommend that you think about when, why, and how you want to end your mentoring relationship. In the case of a mentor, this is a good way to suggest new mentors who can offer a new perspective on the future of the mentee. But what if you don't have a designated end date in mind? Then, you decide when you'll end the relationship, and it's something you should discuss with your mentor to reach an agreement on the end date.

Circumstances change, and just because it's time to say goodbye to your mentor right now doesn't mean you have to say goodbye forever. Always end a mentoring relationship in a professional manner if you have achieved what you set out to achieve. This can give you and your mentor time to evaluate your progress and celebrate the achievements you have achieved. Mentoring relationships can take emotional and mental energy, so it's a good idea to take a break from time to time to recharge your batteries.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *