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My Mentee is Not Engaged – Part I

A Mini Case Study on Mentoring Employees

Jackson has been mentoring Jeb for about four months under a new program established within the organization. Initially they met in a face-to-face meeting but all meetings after that have been via the phone since that seemed better for Jeb. Jackson decided it was time for another face-to-face meeting. He reached out to Jeb and finally, after four attempts, was able to schedule a face-to-face meeting.

The morning of their meeting, Jeb sent an email saying he needed to cancel the meeting, with no reason provided. Jackson suggested that they could talk via phone if that would work better. But Jeb said he was too busy.

The mentoring relationship seems to have stalled. No real progress has been made. Jeb collaborated to set some goals in the first meeting with Jackson, but nothing has happened to achieve those goals since that first meeting. Jeb had some “homework” to do, but never did the additional work he was supposed to do to outline specifics on achieving those goals. Jackson even suggested a few activities via email that may help Jeb to work toward achieving his goals, but Jeb never responded.

Then, to make matters worse, Jackson hears through the grapevine that Jeb was complaining to a few colleagues that he finds his mentoring partner a waste of time and of no value to him. Jackson, Jeb told a few colleagues, doesn’t want to do what he is supposed to do as a mentor. It is obvious, according to Jeb, that Jackson doesn’t want to help Jeb succeed. Jackson was shocked to hear that Jeb said these things.

How do you think Jackson should address the situation with Jeb? What would you do?

Part II will share a few ideas on how Jackson might handle this situation.

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